opinion

Turning Tricks

Tom Hymes
You have to hand it to the adult brain trust: They really know how to set the world on fire with their penetrating innovations. Not to be outdone by their predecessors, the latest crop of sex-revenue engineers is already off the charts, in terms of advancing the affiliate business model to evolve with the times.

The important point to miss is that these salacious pacesetters understand the modern consumer where s/he lives, and will not stop until they have exploited (in a good way) the "take me for free" generation until they are begging to pay for something, anything.

Just consider the tube sites. Talk about cutting edge. The purveyors of these incubating experiments in the architecture of human sexuality are, with sleight of hand, taking 2.0 ideas and advancing them all the way to 3.0. If you spend some time and watch what's going on, you can literally see it happening before your eyes. Once your eyes are open, you also will be able to turn your head quickly enough to see the back of it in a mirror.

And real people are noticing. Like a magician turning a hanky into a philodendron, modern porno warriors are turning heads, my friends. (Do I sound like John McCain? He uses "my friends" a lot, and also wants to station troops in Mogadishu for 100 years.)

Like Valkyries sitting on the gates of Valhalla, the mainstream press has begun to recognize adult entertainment as an indicator species, a bellwether industry that portends larger, broader, deeper economic trends. (We think of ourselves as slime, but we need to remember that they are the vampires and we are the victimized bitches, the hobbled hoes of history.)

So here's how the shit went down: Taking YouTube to the next level, edgy pioneers at some of the biggest companies in the business started their own tube sites about six months or so ago. Shortly thereafter, a lot of controversy started churning — mostly over the minor fact that the majority of the content on them was stolen and then posted up by prepubescent Kazakhstanians — but the underlying concept was not lost on the rest of the industry.

The idea is as brilliant as it is stunningly simple. Use porn to sell porn, and lots of it. By lots of it, I mean use lots of it, give lots of it away for free and then apply the pièce de résistance and add a shit-load of banners and ads that ... that's right, offer porn for sale.

It is the dream that was Rome, something so all encompassing, so ruthless and cunning in its ambition, so complete in its understanding of the human stain, that one can only sit back and gape.

Yes, YouTube made the obvious choice to give away free stuff and then sell other stuff to the people coming for the free stuff, but it was adult that turned that idea on its head by selling the same stuff to the same people to whom it was giving away the same stuff for free.

I think we can all see where this is going and where we fit in the food chain. All I can say is how fortunate I feel to have been around long enough to witness this emasculation of the mundane business model in favor of what can only be described as a Cocteauesque celebration of the inverse. A new day has been born, and I was here to observe the C-section.

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