Because it’s so readily available, pornographers are finding it harder to make a profit.
The online availability of free or low-cost photos and videos has begun to take a fierce toll on sales of X-rated DVDs. Inexpensive digital technology has paved the way for aspiring amateur pornographers, who are flooding the market, while everyone in the industry is giving away more material to lure paying customers.
And unlike consumers looking for music and other media, viewers of pornography do not seem to mind giving up brand-name producers and performers for anonymous ones, or a well-lighted movie set for a ratty couch at an amateur videographerÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s house.
After years of essentially steady increases, sales and rentals of pornographic videos were $3.62 billion in 2006, down from $4.28 billion in 2005, according to estimates by AVN, an industry trade publication. If the situation does not change, the overall $13 billion sex-related entertainment market may shrink this year, said Paul Fishbein, president of AVN Media Network, the magazineÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s publisher. The industryÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s online revenue is substantial but is not growing quickly enough to make up for the drop in video income.
Still, I’m sure there’s plenty of money going around. After all, we are talking about the sister business of the world’s oldest profession. It isn’t going away and if the wealth is distributed a little more evenly, is that really such a bad thing?