Cover image for Obscene profits : the entrepreneurs of pornography in the cyber age
Obscene profits : the entrepreneurs of pornography in the cyber age
Lane, Frederick S., 1963-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Routledge, [2000]

Physical Description:
xxiii, 305 pages ; 24 cm
Format :


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HQ471 .L26 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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Sex sells. Already a ten-billion dollar business-and growing-most sex businesses require relatively low start-up costs and minimal equipment. No wonder retired porn stars, homemakers, college students, and entrepreneurs of every stripe are eager to jump on the smut band wagon. Following the money trail, or in this case, the telecom routes, the author reveals how some big phone companies are cashing in too. Obscene Profitsoffers a startling and entertaining new look at this very old business, and shows why pornography, in all of its variations--videos, magazines, phone-sex, spy cameras, etc.-- is one of the most profitable and popular new careers to come out of the electronic age.

Author Notes

Frederick S. Lane III is an attorney and computer consultant specializing in Internet Legal issues.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Lane, a lawyer and computer consultant, offers a fascinating and informative look at the business of pornography and the boost it has gotten from technology. Telephones, VCRs, computers, and, especially, the Internet have increased privacy and reduced the potential for public embarrassment and prosecution from existing pornography laws. Web sites featuring sexual material are the only ones consistently making money, generating more than a billion dollars in revenue annually. Lane looks back on the history of pornography for fun and profit, from early fetishes found in archaeological digs to Ben Franklin's little-known contributions to current video games that titillate with sex and violence. He examines legislative efforts and court rulings to control and restrict trafficking in pornography. But the economic opportunities in pornography, Lane concludes, invite entrepreneurs to become the electronic equivalents of Hugh Hefner and Larry Flynt. --Vanessa Bush

Library Journal Review

Lane, an attorney and the publisher of the Journal of Electronic Discovery and Internet Litigation, provides a timely case study of the business and economics of pornography. What makes this an interesting study is that with the advent of VCRs and the Internet, barriers to pornography's market entry were effectively bulldozed. While still not mainstream, pornography is now fairly widely accepted, with some 60,000 adult sites currently available. (Sex does sell, to the point that pornography has a greater market share of the entertainment industry than sporting events and live music performances together.) As a result, the industry is experiencing classic and not-so-classic shakeouts. The book is written in such a way that parallels can be made to other Internet enterprises. Recommended for general and business collections.ÄSteven Silkunas, Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority, Philadelphia (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. ix
Introductionp. xiii
1 A Brief History of Pornography and Technologyp. 1
2 Voyeur Viewing Pleasurep. 41
3 The Thin Blue Linep. 79
4 The Risky Business of Online Pornographyp. 121
5 Phone Sex: The First National Pornography Networkp. 149
6 The Search for Satisfactionp. 183
7 Honey, Is That Really You?p. 209
8 All the Web's a Stagep. 239
9 The Future of Online Sexual Entrepreneurshipp. 269
Indexp. 295