Monday, 3 November 2014

Dreams of Spanking goes mainstream? Well, sort of...

If you haven't already seen it, I urge all of you who think about this spanking porn thing we celebrate here, to rush over to http://www.theguardian.com/culture/2014/nov/01/ethical-porn-fair-trade-sex, where you'll find a Guardian article on ethical pornography.

It's of particular interest to me (and, I assume, you) because a lot of the practical detail of porn shoots and their ethos comes from the writer spending time with Pandora and her Dreams of Spanking crew.

I personally don't feel qualified to discuss "straight" porn (as opposed to spanking porn) as I've rarely viewed it. For one thing, I don't really get turned on by watching sex. For another, my formative experience of watching a porn film was at a mate's house, with 2 other male friends, when I was 16 or so. I found it more or less impossible to get aroused in the presence of three other guys, and it became especially difficult when my friend's father came into the room, and started watching too!

What I find interesting about Pandora's films is not their ethical nature (although I do applaud that) but their high (in spanking porn terms) production values. Each clip has a storyline, in many there are appropriate and detailed costumes, and the performers do actually act.

It's pretty easy to produce a clip in a living room, where one performer yells at the other, before dragging them across their knee and spanking them. Low cost and low effort.

Not that I find anything intrinsically wrong with that as an approach. I love basic spanking films (as evidenced by my recent love letter to Real Life Spankings); sometimes it's just nice to get a bit more.

For me, an ethical spanking porn film exists purely when the performers are treated with respect. They should not be compelled, either by economic or psychological necessities, to perform any acts that are uncomfortable for them. Of course, given the nature of CP and bondage films, discomfort may well be a part of the aim. 

It helps if all performers are paid on an equitable basis. 

Clearly this is true of Dreams of Spanking. The feedback I get certainly suggests it is of Real Life Spankings.

A couple of years ago I reviewed Strict English CP, a site which I enjoyed quite a lot for it's varied storylines, and producing both scenes with female and male bottoms.

After looking at their site Pandora commented that she had quite liked it until she realised that they didn't offer to pay male performers. For what it's worth they now charge male performers £100 to appear, providing only a copy of any clips shot and a year's site membership as compensation.

Now, I don't doubt that any men who participated in their shoots got something out of it, even if, effectively, only a cheapish play session, but this still does treat the male actors as less than their female counterparts. Amelia Jane Rutherford is featured in several clips, and I'm absolutely certain that she wasn't required to pay towards the cost of the shoot.

One other point needs to be made I think; a decent number of spanking sites (including all three mentioned here) are run by people who appear in a lot of the videos that they offer. I doubt that Mike at RLS, for instance, actually pays himself a fee for appearing in his own films, as he makes a living from his two paysites.

Of course the website owner does bear the burden of the costs of the shoot (something Strictly English attempt to defray with their £100 levy).

I'd be curious to learn the average cost of shooting a spanking scene, leaving aside the cost of purchasing the actual filming equipment. I imagine that it varies quite considerably, irrespective of ethical concerns.

And now, what started as a consideration of ethical issues has drifted into largely economic ones. Something far too prevalent in our commercially driven society, I'm afraid.

Anyway, enough of me; please give the article your time, because it may make you think, if only whether your personal favourite spanking site meets your own ethical standards.

All the best

Tim

No pictures this time as I didn't want to detract from an important issue. Don't worry - the usual irreverent and spanking pictured filled material will resume tomorrow.

Oh, and if any of this makes less sense than usual, sorry, but I'm feeling a bit under the weather today, and headaches don't enhance my thought processes. 



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