Struggling with Meaninglessness

searching meaning in meaninglessness

Archive for December 2012

The Evolution of Pornography

with 3 comments

WARNING : Explicit! Mature content! Juicy! Stop reading now if you do not want to read about Ronn’s fetishes and sexual objectification of the female body.

NOPE. I’m not going to write about my fetishes. Nor I’m going to write about sexual fantasies.

But I do think pornography is something fun to write about. Why? Simply because it’s a multi-billion dollar industry. Because pornography is the most consumed content on the internet. And because I personally think it is one of the best inventions to (virtually) fulfill the deepest need of human primal instinct (Freudien theory).

Plus, it’s an industry which I have been observing for many good years, so I think it’s time to put down some digital ink on this topic. Here we go.

In The Beginning ..

My first impression of pornography wasn’t really good. In fact, I thought it was awful. When I first watched pornography, especially Western pornography, I thought it was ugly, dirty, gross, and distasteful.  I refused to believe this level of pornography will appeal to anyone other than 60 years old sweaty sticky old men who somehow just have fetishes for everything ugly.

I genuinely felt pornography is a very badly packaged product that people will just keep buying anyway because people desperately need it. Sorta like TM’s Unifi. It’s expensive and not blazing fast by international standard, but Malaysians will still subscribe to it because they crave for ‘fast’ internet. We just don’t have many quality choices around.

Sure, pornography makes lots and lots of money… by selling an inferior product to a desperate market. However, I’ve always thought pornography could be at a higher level. The level where the industry makes lots of money selling a more tasteful product instead.

And then, I witnessed the revolution of Japanese pornography.

The Evolution of Japanese Pornography

Japanese pornography before the year 2000 did give me the same vibe as Western pornography but with just 2 main differences – Japanese actresses are more submissive compared to the western counterpart and their movies have more weird fetishes themes. And so yeah, equally as bad if not worse.

But it all changed in the mid of 2000’s. Around the year 2004, S1 Style Studio revolutionized and revamped the entire Japanese pornography industry with some pretty ingenious marketing killer moves.

Basically the two killer marketing moves they made were:

1 –  Relabeled ‘Porn’ to ‘Adult Video’ & relabeled ‘Porn Actresses’ to ‘Adult Video Idols’.

2- Made adult video idols mainstream.

So, how did S1 Studio make them mainstream? Apart from all the adult movies the girls performed in, they also …

  • Occasionally placed the girls in Japanese TV drama series as cameo
  • Fund movies for the idols to be a leading actress in some B-grade movie
  • Feature them as guests in TV game shows and entertainment shows
  • Organize fans meeting sessions
  • Producing music singles and albums
  • Mini concerts for them to perform singing
  • Produce music videos

Plus, instead of portraying the girls as sluts or some hyper horny creatures, they maintained the cute, innocent, and clean idol image in their adult movies. Fully naked of course. And no weird strange movie themes. Straight forward themes doing common role playing. Because the main focus is not about fulfilling some sort of strange fetish pleasures in the viewers. It’s all about showcasing the idols’ talent and beauty.

Suddenly, these girls are no longer porn stars.  They have useful talents. They are entertaining.  They are some sort of celebrity. They have fans following. It’s a newly defined industry.

What are the benefits of mainstreaming the adult video industry?

  • Creating new buyer behaviour –  By making adult video mainstream, people openly supporting the adult video idols has become culturally acceptable. No longer guys sneakily go into a shop to buy porn in Japan. Whenever a guy buys an adult movie, he is doing it not because he is some desperate horny guy (even if he is) but because he is supporting his favourite idol.
  • Gives a cleaner image –  These girls have useful talent. They perform. They are not just some shoddy actress. That’s why they are all over the TV. They are idols.
  • Creates following – Just like in JPOP and KPOP industry where fanatics will buy every single album and attend every concert of their favourite pop groups, fans of the adult video idols will also buy every single of the adult video release to complete the collection.
  • Expanding the pornography industry – People who wasn’t interested with pornography are constantly exposed to the cute and pretty idols on TV. Chances are they will check out the adult videos too.

S1 Studio was once the most popular studio popularizing legendary idols like Sora Aoi, Maria Ozawa, Honoka, Rio, Yuma Asami, Akiho Yoshizaki, etc.. But from 2011 onwards, they have since lost their throne to IdeaPocket due to lack of innovation and lack in aggression in recruiting new and fresh idols (because female idols will naturally lose their appeal once they pass the age 27 or 28, not only in adult video industry but also in JPOP and KPOP industries. It’s a natural thing.)

Sure, non-idol-mostly-weird-ass-gross-themes pornography do still exist. But the mass no longer go for them. It has became a niche. All the new videos on the best-sellers frontpage typically have an idol on it. Japanese pornography has evolved vs 10 years ago.

Evidence of how Japanese adult video idols went mainstream – A  music video of a pop group consist of all popular adult video idols.  (And yes, I do recognize most of them ;/)

The Incoming Revolution of Western Pornography? Or Just a Niche Market?

The Japanese pornography industry evolved by making their idols mainstream, boosting their popularity, and giving them a cleaner image thus making adult video culturally acceptable. How about Western pornography? Sure, some of the top porn actresses do get followings to a certain extend, but the entire industry landscape did not evolved much at all over the last many years.

However, I noticed a niche porn industry going on in the last 1 year which coincide with the ongoing habits of the social media world and new trends. And i’m start seeing the potential of the next generation of Western pornography. It’s not happening yet – But i’m gonna boldly make a prediction for the next evolution of pornography (and which I believe should happen)-

An all new Pornography industry for the female market

Pornography has traditionally focused and targeted the male market only. But i believe, pornography can evolve by just shifting the target market to the female market. And I strongly believe it should be the way to go. I based my analysis and prediction on the 2 points below:

Point A (WHY): The Rise of Artsy Stuffs and other Trends.

1. Tumblr – In the past few years, Tumblr has gotten more and more popular, especially among the female demographics. What is on Tumblr? Basically all the most interesting pictures and GIFs on earth are on Tumblr. And if you pay attention to what sort of pictures girls usually reblog on Tumblr, they are usually artsy, semi-erotic, sexy pictures. For example, a pretty boy sexily kissing a pretty girl with some random quotes.  Judging by all the pictures girls like viewing on Tumblr, I think the site it’s sorta like a porn for the ladies.

2. Instagram – As smartphone gets better and better, now everyone can take photos with their smartphone. We have now a trend where people like to add filters to the picture to create an artsy feel and sharing it with their friends.

3. Fifty Shades – Another upcoming trend I foresee is the rise of mainstream erotic novels. I think the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy has broken barriers in many ways – Girls are not shy anymore to show they are reading an erotic novel and openly discussing about it.

4. X-Art, Met-Art, Joymii, Orgasms.xxx – Sites for artsy porn. They are still mainly catering to the male market but I believe by just slightly tweaking up the business model, videography and with some good marketing, artsy porn could easily penetrate the female market because I believe it is naturally appealing to the females.

When all the dots are connected , I strongly believe that there can be a huge potential for female pornography market to boom. It’s almost an untapped market. In the future, pornography will not be exclusively a guy thing only but could also for female too. And to make it happen we will probably need to make artsy porn mainstream.

Point B (HOW): Changing Standards To Fit New Market

As an avid gamer, I have witnessed how gaming industry in the past evolved from a traditionally male market and opened up itself. 15 years ago, female gamers were virtually non-existent.  Today, every 1 in 4 gamers are female. Of course, females don’t just naturally come and adopt gaming all of a sudden for no reasons. It’s all about the industry changing standards – By focusing the game to be fun instead of challenging. By focusing on attractive graphics and story-line instead of the gaming mechanics. By making games short and easy instead of long and difficult. By giving a more feminine feel to the game rather than masculine or macho feel.

And it’s the very same reason why I quit console gaming and despise this new standard. It’s the very same reason, why I prefer playing 15 years old games rather than new games. But at the same time, I’m aware that my personal vendetta with this new gaming standard is futile and one-sided. That’s because they gained many more female gamers for every one Ronn who quits.

Similarly, for the next generation of pornography, the standards can be changed to appeal to the female audience. We can get cues of what female want in the erotica department from the book Fifty Shades of Grey. Detailed, dreamy, fantasy-ish, passionate, the forbidden fruit, etc. Sounds pretty close to videos from X-Art.

I’m a big fan of X-Art videos. I personally love artsy porn for many reasons. For one, I think it’s extremely beautiful, clean and natural. It’s tastefully high quality. It’s like the iPhone of pornography. X-Art, in my opinion, did everything right by challenging the status quo of current hardcore porn and setting their own standards.

1. Good looking actors & actress (typically Eastern European girls who has a more natural beauty look)

2. Beautiful background and settings – From house, hotel, sea, beach, forest, or even outdoor city, everything is just beautiful. It’s like a perfect dream. (True story – I was watching one of the X-Art’s video and I was so marveled by the beauty of the sea and i was just staring at it for some time)

3. More intimate and passionate scenes

4. Better video filters to create a more artsy color and feel.

Artsy porn is definitely not for everyone. But if they can create a scenario where for every one old sticky sweaty man leaving but gaining several female customers at the same time, I would say it’s a good trade. A very good trade actually.

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Conclusion

Some may argue pornography may not appeal to all female. Surely, just like gaming industry, most females are not attracted to gaming despite how the gaming industry has evolved over the years. Heck, not even all males are gamers too. Some people may like it, some people don’t. It’s just the way of life. It’s just business.

But just like any other industries, if you could just increase the market share by 1% or 2%, you would probably be a champion. At this moment, every 1 in 3 person who watches porn is a female. Imagine the potential if it goes to 1:1

Right now, artsy pornography is on a very niche market. Will artsy porn become mainstream? Will the mass adopt the new pornography standard? As a multi-billion dollar business industry, I surely do hope the demand will not be forever dictated by the taste of old sticky sweaty men. To make it happen, it will need the power of female market to influence the supply and demand of pornography production. If the ladies are sold by artsy porn, then we would probably see the evolution and adoption of the next generation of pornography in the next few years.

Written by elan85

December 26, 2012 at 11:04 pm

The 4 Types of Malaysian Chinese Girls

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I’ve long known that Malaysian Chinese are generally divided to 2 main groups – The English speaking and the Chinese speaking. This is quite amazing because it demonstrates the power of language – How language can divide people of the same race to have so different values and lifestyle. And I think it mainly relates to the media consumed. If you speak English only, you will tend to look West and consume Western media only (movies, tv series, music, knowledge, news) . If you speak Mandarin/Cantonese only, you will tend to look East instead and only consume Eastern media.

However, I felt this categorization model is incomplete because it doesn’t include the in-between, like myself. I could not fit in either one of the categories because i adopt both of the values. Hence, from the start, I knew there are more than 2 categories.

Recently, I rethought about this again. And I managed to profile 4 categories of Malaysian girls. And it all started out when I spent time thinking about identity crisis.

Hold, let me digress about identity crisis for a while – Why do people people have identity crisis?

Identity crisis takes place in an individual mainly for 2 reasons:

A.When someone has to take on or leave a role at certain age defined by culture

    1. Eg. Quarter-life crisis – Young adults realizing they are not having success/doing anything significant in their life compared to their friends
    2. Eg2. Mid-life crisis – Children are all grown up and parents no longer need to take care of them

B.When someone realizes that his/her personality and lifestyle do not fit with friends and people around him/her

I will not talk much about point A, as there are plenty of established theories in psychology textbooks about it. Point B, on the other hand is seemingly more interesting.

When someone can’t blend in to the group …

People generally yearn for identity and will always try to blend in with group of friends who share similar interest, values and behaviour to define the identity. In the process of blending, they will naturally adopt the common lifestyle, habits and hobbies shared by the group. And when his/her own personal value can’t fit in, he/she will feel tension.

For example, Miss A goes to a university where people are generally more conservative but her values are more liberal. She will feel tension because her liberal thoughts are consistently suppressed and get shot down by conservatives.

The impact may not be huge if she has other cliques who are also liberal where she can fall on to. However,  if all of her friends from the very beginning are conservative in nature, she will most likely be confused with life and will keep searching for meaning, or questioning her beliefs if they are right or wrong …  until she finds a group of friends who share her value and lifestyle.

The 3 major tensions are :

Language (English vs Chinese), Religion (Christian vs Buddhist vs Non), Personality(Extrovert vs Introvert)

OK, Ronn, so what’s your point?

I digressed quite a bit, but my point is simple – I based my observations on the 3 mentioned tensions above. When a person finds an identity they are comfortable in or made them felt assuring (consciously or subconsciously), he/she will naturally adopt the “train of values” set by the group.

And here you go…

Malaysian Chinese Girls – The 4 Types

Note 1 : This profiling is not perfect, and I expect to edit this list several times before it can closely depict the group personalities. Or there could be Type 5 and 6 too which I had overlooked. So let’s just call it version 1 for now.

Note 2 : Just like any other personality profiling, there are always hybrids of personality. Some girls fall into 50% of this category and 50% of that category. Some, 20% this and 80% that.  But it helps to understand the 4 extreme polar of different lifestyles. 

Note 3 : Why only Chinese girls? Because I do not want to pretend that I understand the behavior of other races as different culture generally have different lifestyle. So I stick to what I know best.

Note 4 : Why only Girls? Because guys are boring while girls are more interesting, doh

1.The Devout Girl

  • Devoted Christian
  • English-speaking with very little knowledge about Chinese language
  • Strong interests in musical instruments. Likely to be skilled in playing musical instruments (motivated by communion reasons)
  • Listen only to English music (mainstream or indie)
  • Loves travelling. Has strong desire to travel around the world especially to European countries
  • Likes coffee
  • Sensitive to political news
  • Relatively earlier marriage (mid 20s)
  • Slightly more lavish when it comes to food. Frequent customers of mid to high end restaurants
  • Will have or seek an equally religious partner
  • Extrovert and like meeting new people
  • Caring
  • Generally more optimistic about life
  • Conservative values

2.The Chinese Girl

  • Apathetic to religion. Or Buddhist
  • Speaks mainly Mandarin and Cantonese.
  • Likes hanging out at shopping complexes with friends for shopping therapy. (Mid Valley, Times Square, Sg. Wang)
  • Shopping centres are the 2nd home
  • Love karaoke
  • Inspired by Taiwanese and Korean fashion – eg. floral prints, bright colour, high pants
  • Major fan of Taiwanese and Korean TV series/shows/music
  • Listen mainly to Chinese or Korean music.
  • Likes sweet Taiwanese styled dessert – (Snowflake, Chatime, Gongcha,)
  • Camwhoring/Instagraming
  • Long and straighten hair (dyed/highlighted)
  • Not career-focused
  • Focus more on the physical beauty. Spends time on making up and pampering themselves
  • Either extreme like or extreme dislike for alcohol. For those who like alcohol, will typically hang out at places like Scott’s Garden or Puchong IOI Boulevard with friends

3.The Homely Girl

  • Stays at home most of the time with straightforward and simple lifestyle
  • Family-oriented person
  • Spend most of the time watching TV.
  • Likely to have watched most of the popular western TV series like HIMYM, Big Bang Theory, 2 Broke Girls. Also Korean or TVB dramas depending on her preference.
  • Doesn’t focus much on her looks and fashion. Extremely simple fashion taste.
  • Not motivated to make-up.
  • Other hobbies could include reading, cooking, musical instruments and possibly gaming.
  • Hangouts with the same several BFFs she got to know many years ago. Tight group.
  • Likes going for meals in restaurants or trips for girls-only bonding/chatting session among BFFs
  • Deeply attached to the father
  • Shy
  • Hardworking
  • Find it hard to get a partner

4.The Cool Girl

  • English speaking
  • Atheist/Agnostic or Christian
  • Very good fashion sense
  • Easily bored. Crave for frequent outdoor activities
  • Extrovert
  • Likely to have a special talent – Drawing, crafts, dancing, singing, designing, musical instruments
  • Likes photography and artsy stuffs (Urbanscapes Festival goer)
  • Polarized in music preference – Either listen to mainstream music or a big fan of indie/alternative music
  • Goes to gym, jogging and exercise frequently.
  • Likes partying.
  • Long and beautiful wavy hair
  • Open and liberal values
  • More active on Twitter than other social media platform

Written by elan85

December 22, 2012 at 1:20 am