There seems to be a general buzz in the air that snippets of hardcore porn will
soon be back in the video racks of licensed sex shops. Although I have not read an
official announcement from the Government, police or the BBFC, but it appears that the
porn industry is gearing up for a relaxation in the R18 guidelines.
This month's Video World carries a story about the filming of a big budget British
hardcore video, Dreamscape, [unfounded rumour] which is intended to capitalise on the
expected liberalisation of guidelines. The article also carries other indications of
impending changes. Owners of sex shops have apparently been confidentially told that they
will be able to start selling hard core porn legally within the next few months. Video
World reckon that: New Labour are only too aware of the tide of public opinion that's
in favour of conventional, non-violent porno movies being made available in sex shops.
Perhaps a more convincing indicator is the care with which regulators are talking about
sex these days. Every last one of them continues to point out that public attitudes are
shifting towards the liberalisation of their attitudes towards porn. I noted that Robin
Duval, being interviewed on last night's Newsnight, was very careful to agree with this
thesis whilst moving rapidly on to say that his problems are with sexual violence.
The previous attempt to liberalise porn videos faltered due to a lack of consensus
between the censors, Government, police and customs. Whatever is happening this time
round, I guess that it will at least have agreement amongst these organisations. When
investigating the Makin' Whoopee appeal last Summer I stumbled upon the fact that these
organisations were all having a get together on the subject last November. Ever since this
time, the rumours of liberalisation have abounded.
Well it all sounds promising to me but I fear that typically British compromise will
ensure that the whole thing becomes a farce... unappealing hardcore snippets all over
again. Still it's a start. (maybe!)