ABC: When no one is looking, many women are watching gay porn

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Neville interviewed and surveyed more than 500 women over five years for the project. Many of the women with whom she spoke said “a lot of the problem they have with heterosexual porn is that they focus on the female body" without paying enough attention to men.


“Gay porn gives an opportunity to look at the male form and male beauty and the male face when orgasming,” Neville said.

“What women liked most about male-male porn is versatility, and with heterosexual porn you are going to get penetrated eventually, and that’s dull,” she added. “A lot of ways it can play out with men is more exciting, more experimentation, more open to negotiation.”

Another key finding over the course of Neville’s research was that 55 percent of the women she interviewed said they had imagined themselves as men while consuming gay male erotica.
The women surveyed also expressed a “strong desire to consume porn that is ethical in some way,” Neville said, and they found some heterosexual porn “exploitative.” She found there was a general sense among those interviewed that male actors participate in pornography because they enjoy sex, while some interviewees indicated they were worried about women performers and the gender dynamics in heterosexual porn.

Anjelika, 38, who declined to share her last name because she did not want to publicly reveal her porn-viewing habits, is a startup founder in San Francisco who identifies as bisexual. She said she watches gay male porn a few times a month and, echoing Neville’s findings, said she particularly enjoys its unpredictability and versatility.

The subversiveness of watching porn that’s not “for her” is also part of the fun, she said.

“The naughty component is very important, and I find two attractive men having sex to be a very beautiful thing,” she explained.
The 30-year-old Los Angeles resident said even in aggressive gay porn “it looks like the pleasure they’re both getting is very, very different than straight aggressive porn.”

While conducting research about female viewers of gay porn, one concern Neville had was whether gay men would be concerned about the fetishization of gay male sex. But after interviewing more than 200 gay men, she reported that most saw no issue with this phenomenon.
 
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