You & Porn- The Mag Jam Weekend

Caia Hagel tells us all about the SOFA magazine first Mag Jam Weekend in collaboration with YouPorn. 

So many people joined us to “come and go like Michelangelo” at SOFA magazine’s first Mag Jam Weekend in collaboration with YouPorn. This unforgettable event took place in Potsdam on the outskirts of Berlin on the first weekend of June, in a sunny, boozy retreat surrounded by the Wine God castle, Sanssouci.

Featuring talks around the theme of “Masculinities”, including Body Image & Gym Culture, Dads & Dadbods, #MeToo, Power Shifts in Love & Work and the very special YouPorn You & Porn talk & VR Porn Picnic, the who’s who of Berlin youth & media culture gathered to spill the beans on and explore all the taboo topics that they never get to say out loud.

Special guests included Sebastian Weis (VICE) Viola Funk (freelance editor and director) Anton Jäger (model) Steffen grap (model), Eva Kelly (032c), Jonas Lindstroem (photographer & director), Paulina Czienskowski (author, journalist), Timo Feldhaus (writer, journalist), Maurin Dietrich (curator at Kunstwerke Berlin), Conor Creighton (The Guardian), Bojana Perisic (VICE), Paul (skater, photographer, model), Timur (DJ), Max Migowski (journalist at INDIE Magazine), photographer George Nebieridze and at the helm, SOFA’s dreamboat team, Alexa Bondi de Antoni, Caia Hagel and Ricarda Messner. The Top Secret content that was gathered is being spun into podcasts, moody films, a fashion shoot and a full print magazine, which will be released as The SOFA September Issue.

We may think of porn as a secret vice that doesn’t have much social, political or intimate impact but that’s not what we heard from our diverse cast of males (aged 19-33) who stayed for the Masculinities Mag Jam weekend to go deep. In our idyllic setting, we mixed with females and gender non-conforming folk, each person spoke about whatever was true for them. Despite the diversity of the gathering, we heard that nearly everyone had watched or had an experience with porn at some point.

For the heteronormative males, porn has remained an intimate part of the way they self-gratify. This is sometimes shared with partners but because of the different feeling of porn the performance, and sex with the Real Female in IRL, they mostly prefer to hang out with porn on their own as a special kind of erotic experience. One male said it’s like wrestling, a robust sweaty performance that has a special thrill because he knows it’s fake.

One female said she uses porn a lot in her long distance relationships and that her lover on the screen becomes almost like her porn star. Another female said she’s never watched porn before but since she’s in a long-term relationship she is thinking about starting to watch it with her partner to spice things up (she learned about the YouPorn Couples Sex Quiz ).

We talked about alternative porn and some people said filmic, beautiful scenes with more patient plots actually didn’t turn them on. The funny thing was that it was a female who said ‘ethical porn’ bored her, and a male who said he preferred it.

 

A promiscuous gay male, who doesn’t want a boyfriend and hooks up sometimes four times a day, said his main relationship is with porn. As a queer-identifying black male, he is super turned on by the increasing variety of porn with actors of color and diversity-rich gang bangs. Everyone agreed that weirdness like ears sticking out, uneven nipples or balls and other strange appearance body parts are super sexy.

A female said she and her friends at college prefer gay male porn to hetero porn because there is more emphasis on the penis. A bisexual male admitted that he doesn’t like gang bangs and the ferocious physicality of male-centric porn and prefers the female-friendly category.

Among the many other titillating talking points of the YouPorn x SOFA You & Porn Talk, the conclusion was clear: porn is culture, porn is power. It deserves to be respected and held up to critique and open discussion, in the same way the more visible forms of culture and power are, so it adapts to serve the realities of its many consumers and becomes a true reflection of human experiences, dreams, and longings in a changing world at high velocity.

 

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