Recent changes in the print adult industry have been socially progressive. Or at least appear to be.
Playboy will no longer feature nudes.
We’d like to think that this would be a really good social progression. This unfortunately will probably be a smart marketing model shift for their business. The playboy mansion is up for sale. If you were to say that in the 70’s 80’s or 90’s, people would be shocked. It wouldn’t surprise anyone if they came out with 1 issue per year with a photo spread, because nothing like a little bit of controversy in the mass media to get the sales of print magazines back in order. We’d also like to think that the publishers should get back to the roots of the original magazine. Help people. Promote really good writers. Fight copyright issues. Push boundaries and promote knowledge into peoples minds for a better pop culture with interesting articles.
But that won’t get everyone to buy magazines. Unfortunate that tabloid reporting has become the norm. Sorry Hugh, hope you find a good place to write your essays.
Alternately, their biggest competition, Penthouse is shifting focus to include more diversity. This past January, Kelly Shibari is Penthouses first full figured model. She does not fall in the average, and has established herself already in the adult content industry. And growing up half asian with a not-so average body shape in Japan meant more than just being bullied everyday. More on that here at Huffingtonpost… funny how they have a category for just about anything to report on. But surely the original reporter won’t get paid for that either…
We’d like to think that this isn’t a clickbait or a one time event, and that all publishers/producers of adult content will embrace larger philosophies. Like help promote body diversity besides a larger ratio wasp waist, (we’re looking at you Sports Illustrated). Could this be the start of the new Sexual Revolution 3.0? Consent has already become part of conversation, habit and polite behaviour. Book clubs debating over the best guides if being Ethical Slut or Going Home and Having Dinner is better for some local cultures/environments. Do it yourself clubs with 3D printers making better shaped personal vibrators. Open information about sexuality taught from day zero to children. Imagine what better world we could have…
But is this something to report on? Absolutely, especially when there have been whole fetish industries built around /each and every individual tastes. The recent surge in interest in BDSM toys and workshops is definitely related back to the amount of 50 Shades sold. Or is this just a new way for the larger corporations to take a bit of the smaller niche markets? And we haven’t seen that before in other industries have we?
So, what does this mean? More realistic bodies in print, on screen, and any medium that can transmit a story? Is this a trend that will come and go? Rubenesque super-heros in comic books? Or will this be an evident change in the direction of adult print publications that will carry on? Give the people what they want?
Or is this merely a temporary respite, from being overwhelmed with the same message over and over and over again? Which is what caused people to stop paying attention and much needed consumer dollars for those products.
Just remember folks, it’s the question that matters more than the answer.
Stay tuned, stay sexy.