The British aren’t cumming! The British aren’t cumming!

I struggled with quite what to call this post. At first it was going to be The Prudish are coming! The Prudish are coming! Then it struck me that, considering what the post was going to cover, it ought to be The Prudish aren’t coming! The Prudish aren’t coming! But that seemed to be getting too far from Paul Revere’s apocryphal quote. So I settled for The British aren’t coming! The British aren’t coming! Because it seems we aren’t. Or at least we’re not supposed to. I’m pretty sure that it’s written into the Magna Carta that we Brits are supposed to be prudish.

A long list of sex acts just got banned in UK porn
Source: The Independent.

WPbnm

Pornography produced in the UK was quietly censored the other day through an amendment to the 2003 Communications Act, and the measures appear to take aim at female pleasure.

The Audiovisual Media Services Regulations 2014 requires that video-on-demand (VoD) online porn now adhere to the same guidelines laid out for DVD sex shop-type porn by the British Board of Film Censors (BBFC).

[AM’s comment: I’m not sure I entirely have a problem with this. Porn is porn, no matter how you access it, and applying diffrernt standards to different porn sourced in different ways seems illogical at best. However…]

Seemingly arbitrarily deciding what is nice sex and what is not nice sex, the board has banned the following acts from being depicted by British pornography producers:

  • Spanking
  • Caning
  • Aggressive whipping
  • Penetration by any object “associated with violence”
  • Physical or verbal abuse (regardless of  if consensual)
  • Urolagnia (known as “water sports”)
  • Female ejaculation
  • Strangulation
  • Facesitting
  • Fisting

The final three listed fall under acts the BBFC views as potentially “life-endangering”.

[AM’s comment: I’m not sure how Strangulation can be any more “life-endangering” in a porn film than in an “action movie”, nor how depictions of Strangulation, Facesitting or Fisting can be any more “life-endangering” than depictions of shooting someone with an AK47. Although I can’t recall the title, I’m pretty sure I’ve seen a movie certified by the BBFC  for cinema release in which a violent assault culminates in the perpetrator urinating on the victim. Any number of Hollywood blockbusters show women being beaten and verbally abused. And as for “any object associated with violence” – I present Exhibit A: the British indie hit movie, “Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels”.

Anyway, back to the Independent’s article.]

While the measures won’t stop people from watching whatever genre of porn they desire, as video shot abroad can still be viewed, they do impose severe restrictions on content created in the UK, and appear to make no distinction between consensual and non-consensual practices between adults.

Femdom porn will be hit particularly hard by the regulations.

“There appear to be no rational explanations for most of the R18 rules,” Jerry Barnett of the anti-censorship group Sex and Censorship told Vice UK. “They’re simply a set of moral judgements designed by people who have struggled endlessly to stop the British people from watching pornography.”

[AM’s comment: Now this, I think, raises a more important point; that of what should and should not be allowed to be depicted in porn, rather than whether regulations covering VoD porn are in line with R18 DVD porn.]

More worryingly, the amendment seems to take issue with acts from which women more traditionally derive pleasure than men.

“The new legislation is absurd and surreal,” Itziar Bilbao Urrutia, a dominatrix who produces porn with a feminist theme added to Vice UK. “I mean, why ban facesitting? What’s so dangerous about it? It’s a harmless activity that most femdom performers, myself included, do fully dressed anyway. Its power is symbolic: woman on top, unattainable.”

[AM’s comment: Erika Lust, my current favorite pronographer, also wrote the following in The Independent.]

Today, pornography in the UK has been quietly censored, with a long list of acts now banned from film. As an erotic film maker, I’m saddened by what I hear, not only because my fellow producers will suffer as businesses, but because what is most apparent is the enforced restriction on what appears to be acts from which women derive pleasure.

Porn and adult film has always been a very male dominated industry – we need more women in porn as it is –  but it seems that we are now back in an era of Victorian morality. The suppression of sexuality in the UK is not a new development, but recently it appeared that we were making some progress. The last year, for example, has seen a huge increase in women speaking out more freely about their sexuality. Suddenly, we’re seeing more female porn producers, and more adult film created specifically for women. So it should come as little surprise to me, knowing the struggle that we have had to break porn away from the masculine industry and regulation, that these same women are now being oppressed.

It’s 2014, and we need to acknowledge that sexuality is key to human nature, whether that be the so-called “normal sex” as we imagine it, or kinkier desires.

The fact is that porn does need to change, and on a big scale. But this legislation is not a step in the right direction. It has been put in place because of a supposed need to safeguard children, but prohibiting something doesn’t make it unattainable, it only makes it more desirable.

Teenagers will watch pornography probably before they’ve even had their first sexual encounter. Rather than denying them access to porn completely, which simply doesn’t work when it is so endlessly available online, or limiting what they can see, therefore limiting what they perceive as “normal”, we should be educating them better. Is it correct to teach our children that certain sexual acts are wrong and others not? When a lot of these “R18 rules” are targeted at censoring female pleasure – female ejaculation is one of the banned activities – doesn’t that perpetuate the poor gender education our children are already receiving? We should be teaching them about the importance of female pleasure, not censoring it.

With this legislation, the UK is in danger of finding itself back in an age where porn is simply the boring, unrealistic, male fantasy of bimbos eagerly pleasing men as if it is their duty, where women are submissive and lack ownership of their sexuality. Women in the industry will now fear the loss of their livelihoods as well as their sexual independence.

In the industry, the thought is that many of these “rules” make no sense. How could female ejaculation possibly be any more “dangerous” than male ejaculation? This is utterly demeaning.

We need to rethink what is offensive or dangerous and what is, in fact, normal human nature, and remember that it’s more important to educate than regulate.

9 Responses to “The British aren’t cumming! The British aren’t cumming!”

  1. MySideOfTheStreet Says:

    All of this porn crackdown has been affecting sales of my books in the UK. I also had to have several scenes completely rewritten to meet decency laws.

    *sigh* what a pain

  2. You lost me when you put up a movie clip featuring Jason Statham, fuck I just swooned, melted and perhaps ejaculated… good thing that wasn’t being filmed in the UK. 😉

  3. diggingupdaisy Says:

    I guess I need to cross becoming a porn actress in the UK off of my list of things I want to be when I grow up. 😦

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