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DeLamater & HasdayPage 35

is the newest means of disseminating pornography, and also the one offering the greatest (and in many cases least expensive) access to pornography.

Acknowledging the increase of widely available pornographic media over the decades, Barron & Kimmel (2000) conducted an analysis comparing the content of magazine, video, and Internet (specifically Internet newsgroup, or Usenet) pornography, finding a highly significant and large increase in violent content on the Usenet compared to magazines and videos. They found that more than a quarter of Usenet scenes contained coercive or nonconsensual sex (compared to under five percent for both magazines and videos). In Usenet scenes, men were disproportionately the perpetrators of violence and women the victims. Although this pattern was also seen in videos (though not magazines), unlike both videos and magazines, where the vast majority of violence occurred in the context of consensual relationships, the violence on the Usenet was primarily nonconsensual or coercive.

Gossett & Byrne (2002), focusing on the content of rape-themed Internet pornography specifically, found the most common theme to be graphic depictions of pain inflicted by anonymous men on exposed, powerless, and usually innocent women. This contrasts with other forms of media, they claim, where both the “rape myth” (where women enjoy being raped) and the depiction of promiscuous women who “deserve” what they get are common. Additionally, they explore the medium itself, positing that the interactive features of many rape sites (which offer a choice of the race of the woman to be raped and the location of the rape act, among others) add a sense of control for the pornography user that has not been present in other mediums. Finally, Gossett & Byrne (2002) discuss how the unprecedented access to such sites, as well as the prevalent practice of violent sites providing links to other violent sites, makes the relatively small proportion of violent pornography to nonviolent pornography on the Internet

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