Stoya-WFH0121-004, sex school, xo

But What is Porn-Porn?

August 2, 2017
Stoya in Focus
Essay from the book “Philosophy, pussycats & Porn”

Apneatic was in my kitchen the other day. She’s a human nude model, not a personification of
sleep disorder.
She was describing a shoot she’d done recently, and Steve Ronin said he didn’t realize she’d
started shooting porn-porn (as opposed to soft-porn, art-porn, sort-of-porn.) Both of us turned to
him all like “That isn’t really porn-porn,” prompting him to ask what the demarcation line of porn- porn is.
I shouted, as I do, that it’s only really porn when you wake up in the middle of the night worrying about a spelling error on the 2257 age verification documents. It’s only really porn when you dread some kind of cop busting in demanding to see that paperwork.
It’s only really porn when VISA gives you a hard time and AmEx won’t even touch you. When
you don’t know when your bank account might be closed, much less have any chance of getting a small business loan.
When you’re shut out of PayPal, paying ~13% instead of ~3% for a payment processor. When Big Cartel will host your store but you can’t sell videos because that violates Stripe’s TOS. When you’re unsearchable on Patreon/Tumblr/etc., waiting for Facebook or some armchair hacker to out your legal name—making it easier for strangers to call every aspect of your garbage, instead of just your public persona.
I’d add it’s only really porn when doctors routinely insist on an even fresher HIV test than the one you just had done the prior week, but that’s specific to on-camera talent.
Clearly, I’m a bit tired of art dudes collecting the street cred of pornography while knowing that they can talk their way out of trouble if they shoot in the streets, while Kickstartering their books, while keeping their mainstream clients.
Even though a lot of those dudes are acquaintances, and some of them are close friends and confidants. Their nipples are not a deleting offense on Instagram, and mine are.
It’s not about sharing the suffering, so much as sharing the effort to access the same level of
infrastructure that media companies can use to broadcast hardcore violence or hateful
misogyny.