Click here or press the Escape key to leave this site now
Need to speak to someone?
Call our helpline on 08088 00 00 14
Other ways to contact us

What is porn?

Porn – or pornography – refers to images, videos or words that are sexual and are created or shared to make another person sexually excited. Porn may just show people’s sexual body parts or it may show people having sex.

Porn can also show sexual acts that many people would find distressing and painful in real life. Some porn shows a person being hurt or abused – and mainstream porn often shows only specific bodies and relationships: white, heteronormative, able-bodied, and thin, which isn’t a realistic representation of the world.

Many young people have watched porn. It is estimated that at least one-third of young people starting secondary school will have watched pornography – a number that rises to over 95% by the end of S2 (https://rshp.scot/).

Some might be shown something from friends, see something online, and some people might just be curious. Lots of young people don’t enjoy watching porn and no one should feel as though they have to like it or watch it. But others may enjoy it or use it for information.

There are different types of porn. Most readily available porn is referred to as ‘mainstream porn’. Some porn is called ‘extreme porn’ (illegal to download or own in Scotland due to the violence it depicts) and some is called ‘ethical porn’ (conditions for workers aim to be better and they portray ‘real’ sex).

It is important to remember that pornography that portrays sexual violence or threats to a person’s life are very harmful and the effects of this should never be minimised.

You can read more about what is represented in porn here.

Read our Fantasy v. Reality section for more information about the differences between porn sex and real sex – and how this can make problematic behaviours seem normal.

Contact us

Find out all the ways you can get in touch.

Get involved

Learn what you can do to support the Rosey Project’s work.

Find out more

For more information, you can visit the Glasgow and Clyde Rape Crisis website.

Loading