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Pornography

Pornographic magazines on display.

Pornography or porn is the portrayal of explicit [sexual] subject matter for the purposes of sexual excitement and erotic satisfaction.

Pornography may use any of a variety of media, ranging from [books] , [magazines] , [postcards] , [photos] , [sculpture] , [drawing] , [painting] , [animation] , [sound recording] , [film] , [video] , or [video game] . However, when sexual acts are performed for a live audience, by definition, it is not pornography, as the term applies to the depiction of the act, rather than the act itself. Thus, portrayals such as [sex show] s and [striptease] are not classified as pornography.

Pornography has often been subject to [censorship] and legal restraints on publication on grounds of [obscenity] . Such grounds and the very definition of what is or is not pornography have differed in different historical, cultural and national contexts.

Over the past few decades, an immense industry for the production and consumption of pornography has grown, with the increasing use of the [VCR] , the [DVD] , and the [Internet] , as well as the emergence of social attitudes more tolerant of sexual portrayals. Performers in pornography are referred to as [pornographic actor] s (or actresses), or the more commonly known title "porn star" and are generally seen as qualitatively different from their mainstream counterparts. [Amateur pornography] has become widely popular and generally distributed via the Internet for free.

Etymology

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