Forbes: Mandatory condom usage could prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases in the porn industry

This article might have been the ultimate condom mandate except the author gets wishy-washy at the end of it and pulls her punches. Read AdultFYI and watch the Rob Black show www.therobblackshow.com/watch_live.html where we pull no punches

Susannah Breslin writes on www.forbes.com – Recently, a porn star turned up HIV+. Her stage name is Cameron Bay [pictured]. She is 28 years old.

It’s unclear how or when she contracted the virus, and we may never know for sure.

Since, the adult industry’s Free Speech Coalition has called for adult production companies to stop shooting until the situation has been contained.

As someone who’s covered the porn industry for years, I find myself conflicted when it comes to the subject of porn and condoms.
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On the one hand, I don’t like being told what to do anymore than your average porn star, which is to say not at all. The AIDS Healthcare Foundation spent years getting a measure passed that requires adult performers to use condoms while shooting sex scenes. Earlier this month, the law was upheld, but enforcing it will be much more complex. Pornographers and porn performers opposed to such legislation say it violates the First Amendment. How this will play out remains to be seen.

On the other hand, mandatory condom usage could prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases in the porn industry. The story of Bay wouldn’t repeat itself. Some pornographers claim no-condoms movies sell better than with-condoms movies, but Wicked Pictures has been condoms-only for years and remains one of the top players in the game. Although, for smaller production companies in an industry already struggling to reinvent its business model in the face of content pirating, a hit in sales could be a death knell.

I’ve spent time on a wide range of porn sets, from big budget to low-rent. I’ve seen scenes shot with condoms, and I’ve seen scenes shot without condoms. Currently, performers are required to show up for work with a test proving their HIV- status. I’ve seen tests checked carefully, and I’ve seen tests given nothing more than a passing glance.

I’ve also been a witness to just how hard it is to shoot a porn movie. For its stars, that is. This isn’t a cubicle job. This isn’t a white-collar world. This isn’t done in a hazmat suit. Porn is messy. There are bodily fluids, contorted positions, and sex scenes that take hours to shoot.

Some female performers claim working with condoms is hard on their bodies, and I believe them. Some male performers say it makes their job, well, harder, and I can imagine it would. Shooting porn is unforgiving, a near-Herculean task undertaken by X-rated athletes who tolerate being misunderstood by millions of Americans to deliver the sexual fantasies most viewers are too ashamed to realize in their personal lives. To tell performers what to do is to not understand what they do.

That said, my heart breaks a little bit every time there’s another story, every few years, it seems, of another porn star who discovers they’re HIV+. Here we go again, I think. The headlines screech the news across the front pages of mainstream publications that know their readers can’t get enough of this perfect storm of sex and tragedy. Eventually, the reporters leave, but for patient zero, their status is forever.

So, I remain ambivalent, torn between what I wish would happen, and what I think isn’t my place. Porn is a world most of us don’t understand because its realities end up on a cutting room floor that doesn’t exist anymore.

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