Porn ‘no?’ graphy
On October 27, 2018, the Indian government’s telecom department informed the internet service providers (ISPs) to ban 827 websites for hosting pornographic content. However, even though the situation was assumed to be under control, millions of people in India can still find their way around the ban. Speaking to the youth, counsellors and digital programmers, Café finds out if porn should really be banned
It has been over six months (from October 27, 2018) since popular pornographic websites have been blocked by the Indian government’s telecom department. ISPs such as BSNL, MTNL, Jio, Act Broadband and Airtel have blocked their consumers from accessing free flow porn websites. This is the second time that pornography has been banned in India after the first attempt in August 2015. It was noted that many sites that were being blocked didn’t have public announcements by the issuing authorities i.e. the Indian government or the internet service providers. Hence, the public is unaware of all the websites that have been blocked in India. Many have learnt about the ban on pornography in India through tweets and shared posts regarding the issue.
Here’s what a cross section of people have to say about banning pornography in India:
‘It all depends on the hormones’ “I feel it shouldn’t be banned. But there should be more securities for using the website. If porn is banned, it may give rise to more rape cases to fulfill desires. The consumption of porn is not necessary; some watch porn as all don’t have the ability to control their urges. It all depends on how the hormones react. Watch porn, but the government should make it secure enough so that young children don’t have access to it, as it can affect their mindset. I agree watching porn is religiously bad, as they say the body is a temple of god. But this generation has a more open mindset.” ALRICA FERNANDES, singer
‘Create subscriptions instead’ “I’m not a fan of bans on anything, apart from the obvious things like assault rifles and anything else that can cause serious havoc or take lives. Porn isn’t harmful in any way. I know serious ‘aficionados’ of porn who live normal lives. Their wives know about it and don’t care. If the government decides to regulate porn, as they should, then there will possibly be systems in place to curb trafficking and other illegalities that exist now. I don’t think sites need to be blocked. Create paid subscriptions instead. We have to start looking at things differently now and not constrict everything to the pre-existing orthodox and narrow mindset that sadly still prevails.” KURT BENTO, CEO, Creometric
‘Banning porn won’t make a difference’ “It’s a very vast topic and very obscure too. I don’t think porn should be banned in India. This could create a higher tendency for rapes in the country; the more oppressed the Indian society is, the more amount of sexual violence will take place. However, I do feel that the ban on porn or these arguments for and against it would not matter in far off rural areas that don’t have internet connectivity, where sexual violence is not be influenced or deterred by pornography.” AMANDEEP KAUR, hotel management student ‘Porn can make people treat their partners like objects’ “Porn is necessary sometimes. If someone has a fetish or a kink that may not be possible to fulfill in real life, they should be able to watch it at least to get that pleasure as long as it does not border on the illegal side of the porn industry. Porn can help relieve this frustration, especially for people not in committed relationships. While porn is a good idea as maybe they cannot explore their sexual fantasies in real life, on the other hand, I feel that whatever they show is so unrealistic in porn. It gives the wrong idea about what sex should be. It makes boys have high expectations about sex and what their women should look like. They treat women like objects later.” ARNOLD GOMES - student
‘Pornography takes way the real act of intimacy’ “I do not think this is accurate. Pornography objectifies women and men both. It in no way represents what sexual intimacy really is. Individuals who have access to pornography tend to get extremely addicted to the material and then find themselves focused only on porn. It hampers all other areas of life. For the young, pornography is their first brush with sexual relations. What is depicted is brash and very often animalistic, taking away from the act intimacy. The young mind brought up with free access to porn will find it difficult to lead a healthy adult, sexual life as a lot of what they know is inaccurate. For sexual dysfunction, pornography may be used but as far as I know, it’s used as a last resort.” CHARLENE FARRELL, counseling psychologist
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