What's Wrong With Christian Pop Culture (Part Seven)
“Frank” also cites a number of statistics without citing their origin.
Some were reported by the Barna Group, a legitimate public opinion polling service for Christian organizations. They use recognized and accepted standard polling and analysis techniques to derive their conclusions.
Their conclusions, which “Frank” links to, are much more matter of fact about porn than “Frank” would lead us to believe. They approach the matter clinically and report what their interviewees said; they draw conclusions but do not attempt to prescribe a strategy for dealing with same.
Another group of statistics were linked to Net Nanny, a company that provides an online filtering service for parents. While Net Nanny takes a far more partisan stance, it’s at least announcing its partisanship up front, and readers can decide how large a grain of salt they wish to apply to it.
But most of “Frank’s” statistics are unattributed and vague.
– Over 40 million Americans are regular visitors to porn sites.
This is a Barna stat, but it reflects both deliberate viewers and those who stumble across porn sites via pop-up ads, links that don’t announce their content, etc. It also fails to define -- as just about everybody who writes about the topic also fails to define -- what they consider to be porn (is an adult site’s pop-up ad of a model in a tight costume considered porn even though it features nothing explicit?). It isn’t clear if their interviewees consist of all people in their respective age groups or just those who regularly use the Internet. In either case, I’m calling shenanigans on the boomer claim that 69% of them never ever visit porn sites, even unintentionally; that seems to reflects embarrassment more than reality (we’re boomers, dammit, we embraced porn in the 1960s and 70s).
– The porn industry’s annual revenue is more than the NFL, NBA, and MLB combined. It’s also more than the combined revenues of ABC, CBS, and NBC.
“Frank” offers no source for this, I can find no statistics online that back this up. The three sports leagues cited generated a little less that $30 billion in 2017, the three US networks made $40 billion (admittedly this number has more fudge room because of Hollywood bookkeeping practices). The US porn market seems to be around $4.3 billion.
– 47% of families report that pornography is a problem in their home.
Another unsourced statistic. I’m curious who this sample group was. If you go to an AlAnon meeting, you’ll find almost everybody there reports alcohol is a problem in their homes; not so much with people who don’t belong to the AlAnon community.
– Pornography use increases marital infidelity by more than 300%.
Also unsourced. The methodology here is crucial to the question as correlation does not mean causation. A bad marriage falling apart might find one or both partners viewing porn and / or committing infidelity as a way to deal with the pain of a bad relationship, not the cause of the marriage going sour. (Not to excuse bad behavior but to explain it, I’m sure there are also many people who don’t realize what they are doing to make their partners miserable and -- when those partners turn to porn or infidelity or drugs or drink -- assume the partners are solely at fault.)
– 56% of divorces involve one party having an “obsessive interest” in porn.
Unsourced, but I believe this number 100%. When a lawyer is drawing up a bill of divorcement, they’ll include anything and everything. “Didn’t wash the dishes? Check. Left their clothes on the floor? Check. Watched porn? Check…”
– 1 in 10 kids under 10 years of age have been exposed to porn.
A Net Nanny figure, and it sounds about right, though again, what do they mean when they say porn? A pop-up ad of a fully dressed but provocative model? The aforementioned “maximum hydraulic”? I don’t want to trivialize this topic (see below) but this statistic is far from helpful.
– It’s a problem for 10% of 7th graders.
Net Nanny posted: “NPCC ChildLine recently released a report that found a tenth of 12 to 13-year-olds fear they may actually be addicted to pornography.” “Frank’s” posted stat does not accurately reflect the report’s finding; a fear is not a reality, a problem is. 12 to 13 year olds have anxiety over a wide variety of issues that have no basis in reality; fear of porn addiction may be among them (but again, more below).
– Pornography is just 2 clicks away on some of the most popular sites and apps your child may be visiting.
What isn’t 2 clicks away online? I got my NFL revenue status with just two clicks from “Frank’s” post -- > Google > “what is yearly revenue for NFL” = bingo!
A statistic “Frank” didn’t include from Net Nanny was this: “Per Google Analytics, pornography searches increase by 4,700%... when children are out of school.”
This is the problem with most moral panics.
© Buzz Dixon