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Hitting the Mark: The Art of Creating Compelling Adult Content Gene Zorkin


Putting Ellie Idol On A Pedestal: Cosplay, Compelling Content and Clips Mallory Hall


Kitten Boheme: ‘Booty Thirst Trap,’ Compelling Content and Porn Script Writing Erika Chan


Lee Roy Myers: Right Where He Should Be – By Chance Gene Zorkin


Lance Hart: 3D Chess and the Art of Compelling Content Mallory Hall


Are Obscenity Prosecution Concerns Obsolete?


Hookahqueeen: Balancing Customer Wants, Content Creation and Human Integrity

Gene Zorkin

Mallory Hall




Featured Article

Hitting the Mark: The Art of Creating Compelling Adult Content By Gene Zorkin In the early days of the adult internet industry, there was a half-joke among some of the sector’s first entrepreneurs, a one-liner which proposed that the internet porn business was like a twist on the money line from Field of Dreams: “Build it and they will cum.” Back then, the question of how to make your content stand out from the crowd was less about the quality and character of the content than it was getting your site in front of enough consumers’ eyeballs. Some of the most successful sites of the day produced no content of their own; instead, they licensed content which fit the niches and themes of the sites they promoted, while focusing much of their attention

(and budget) on building a traffic base. “Content is King” may have been a popular rallying cry, but we all understood the implied caveat – without traffic, your king is liable to get quite lonely, sitting on a throne with no subjects over which to rule. The current market for online adult entertainment is a very different place than that of the late 90s. The market has both grown and consolidated, with more self-produced content available than ever, but fewer major studios churning out new titles and signing contract stars. Adult websites are still numerous, but


a relative handful of them receive more traffic than the rest combined. Ultimately, the challenge remains getting and holding the attention of consumers – and if you’re banking on getting them to pay for access to your content, you’d better bring something quite compelling to the table. What is the key to creating enthralling, engaging content? There is no single answer of course, no magic formula which will assure that what you shoot will mirror what your customers want to see. This doesn’t mean there’s no common ground between successful producers, or points of commonality in the content they produce. To gain insight on how the creators of the most interesting and alluring adult content go about their work, YNOT recently sat down with a small handful of directors, script developers, editors and clip creators

to talk about their processes, the source of their vision and the thinking which informs their work. Whether you create content or not, it’s important – and valuable – to understand the various factors and facets which comprise ‘good’ content. Such insight helps you market and advertise more effectively, because if you endeavor to understand what’s behind the content, along the way you’ll gain a greater understanding of what motivates consumers to purchase it. While the adult entertainment market has changed immensely over the years, there is much that hasn’t changed over the same period. The best content is still made by those who are passionate about what they do and who have an intuitive understanding of what like-minded consumers are looking for in the genres and categories they enjoy. Humor still has a big role to play in adult entertainment – not just in promoting and marketing porn, but within the content itself, as well.

About the Author Gene Zorkin has been covering legal and political issues for various adult publications (and under a variety of different pen names) since 2002.




Putting Ellie Idol on a Pedestal:

Cosplay, Compelling Content and Clips By Mallory Hall Ellie Idol is an indie clip artist who produces and edits all her own content. “I got my start [in the industry] in 2006, with the help of an acquaintance, modeling for an amateur porn site, which led to me getting an agent and filming for the ‘big guys,’” she shared with YNOT. In 2007, Idol “retired” from the business – but not for long. “In 2010, I was talking to an old industry friend … This friend mentioned Clips4Sale and told me the


type of content he was creating for it and that ‘anyone could do it,’” she recounted. Jumping in, Idol borrowed a camcorder from a relative and started filming all sorts of fetish videos in secret — solo clips and others made with her close friends. Eventually, in mid-2012, she’d made enough money to buy her own camera and launched her own personal clips store, “My Little Princess Ellie.” It was a “female domination”-focused store with the POV angle. “Let me say, life was forever changed, and I felt I

was on the right path for myself, finally,” Idol said. Today, when it comes to production, Idol does it all. “I am the camera operator for almost all of my solo videos, which I also edit myself,” she explained. “Wearing all the hats is common when indie production is becoming so popular, and luckily I enjoy it.” “Being an established store, I now experiment and create content that I myself enjoy and feel passionate about instead of trying to fit some sort of mold,” she explained. “I now produce a lot of roleplay, taboo and — my favorite — cosplay clips! Heck, I even mix genres now, for example, femdom with cosplay.” Idol estimates she’s been in around 2,000 clips in her lifetime, with 1,700 of those for her current store. This figure doesn’t include clips she’s produced for or of other models, which would bump her overall credit count up much higher. “I try to update every single day, but… life can get in the way or certain clips can take up more time than others, like my special effects videos,” she said. When considering the pace Idol keeps up, as well as the demands certain pieces of content can put on her overall operation, it’s interesting to consider what efforts she must put forth to keep it all fresh and compelling. Idol took some time out to explain exactly that.

Since I’ve been doing a lot of cosplay and roleplay content, I think it’s important to pick ideas I feel passionate about. The more I know the source material, the better content I’ll make and the better it will be received. I try to only cosplay characters I know very well or, at the very least, have researched thoroughly. Not that I always have the time to do this but keeping up with media trends is pretty important. The [producers] who are able to drop a new vid of, say, Bowsette — those [models] would see a lot of interest and likely make a lot of sales on this particular character’s clips. When making cosplay content, I think it’s important to get as in-character as you can with acting, costumes and settings. You want this to be immersive, as it will typically translate to more sales. Of course, there are [models] out there who just throw on cosplay and do nothing to act like the character, nor do they have a plotline, and will do just fine in sales. I think the most important part is just making the content you enjoy and would be proud of. Your clients can see when you’re having fun. It shows on screen. In your view, is it effective to keep up with “trend” content? Or, is it better to just make what you want

YNOT: So, why clips? Ellie Idol: Producing clips from home gives me a lot of freedom that cam, dancing or filming for mainstream porn companies wouldn’t give me. Being able to film whenever I want without scheduling it with fans is the perfect fit for me as of this moment. I was on MyFreeCams in 2011 and 2012 doing shows on weekends. I enjoyed it, but it didn’t give me any residuals as clips do. Since then, I’ve done Skype shows when possible and have appeared with AstroDomina on her MFC stream occasionally but, as of right now, camming requires just a little more than I can give. Though I intend to pick it back up, perhaps even in the next year or so, I just haven’t decided which site I’ll go through. I’ve also considered Twitch or Plexstorm since I’m a huge gamer. We’ll see where life takes me. In your view, what makes compelling content?


start over in another category if you want to keep earning. Most models have rebranded at least once to meet the demands of the everchanging market. You have to be prepared for this if you’re only following trends. That’s why I think it’s best to just do what you love and establish yourself there. If it becomes a hot topic, you’re already at the top and have your fanbase. It’s the new ones jumping in only because it’s a trend and not a passion that likely won’t see the same reward. Keep in mind, this is just my perspective based on what I have observed or experienced, so don’t let

and if trends happen to correspond, then that’s great too? I think following trends can really help a model make sales, while I also feel it can saturate a market. As a content creator, I feel it’s important to create in areas you feel passionate about as your customers can tell when you’re not having fun or that you know nothing about the topic. Taking the time to research the categories you want to dip your toes into makes all the difference. I see some stores with hundreds to thousands of clips not even make it into the top 50 for that category, while other stores will have a handful and be in the top 5. They understand something, and their customers can see and appreciate that. Following trends can be important, but keep in mind also that trends are constantly changing. If you build a store around something, let’s say financial domination, and that category sees a ton of saturation with fewer clients, your clip sales might fall drastically and you’ll essentially have to




Seductive Rates 12

clip site in trouble with the credit card processors. This can be difficult, as every site can have their own personal ban list on top of the ones that make sense that is there to prevent anything illegal. Some sites completely ban taboo fantasy content, others only allow step-relations, while others you completely have the green light to post as much freaky-fun fauxcest as you like! Some sites have completely banned words like “humiliation” or “diaper,” so when making clips or custom videos, we have to keep this in mind. What about personal limitations — and also, opportunities? As for personal limitations, I suppose editing can put a cap on my creativity. While I’ve come a long way with my editing, I still have so much to learn. I get custom requests all the time requiring my skills, and I use that time to perfect. This sometimes means a clip will take a week or more to finish, so I have to jump around and work on something else if I get stuck or frustrated. Of course, there’s always something to keep busy with when you’re an indie artist. When working for yourself, you can be as creative as you like and I think that’s what really draws me into this lifestyle. If you take a look at just the categories listed on clip sites, you’ll realize there is so much you can do. The sky is kind of the limit, isn’t it? Finally, what do you think other artists and would-be producers need to about know clips creation?

my words keep you from experimenting if you’re a producer. I think we need to find our own way to succeed — no two paths will be exactly the same!

If you’re just starting out as a clip artist and feel discouraged, don’t give up! It took me years of persistence to finally find my place in this evergrowing, everchanging industry.

What industry-specific limitations must you consider when producing and editing clips? When producing content, one has to adhere to site rules if you don’t want to land yourself or the

About the Author Mallory Hall is from Central Texas. She has worked in journalism since her university years and enjoys exploring unexpected occurrences in ordinary places.



Kitten Boheme: ‘Booty Thirst Trap,’ Compelling Content and Porn Script Writing By Erika Chan

Kitten Boheme has always been a writer. In college, she majored in theater and minored in history — because “I wanted to be sure that when I graduated I had a degree in fields that would be nearly impossible to work in,” she said, obviously joking. Post-college, Boheme went on to do mainstream script writing. A handful of her projects have since been published and performed around the world, though she won’t reveal what or where. “It wasn’t a huge leap for me to take what I was doing in my vanilla life and apply that to the adult industry,” she explained. “I started with writing erotic stories… and found a call for submissions in Rachel Kramer Bussel’s Big Book of Submission.


That gave me the writing bug. I started writing for all the submission calls I could find.” Boheme’s erotic story submissions eventually morphed into writing scripts for adult films. “[Porn script writing] is basically writing erotic stories, only I don’t have to fuss and fret about the sex — that’s someone else’s problem,” she said. Her “big break,” as she says, in the adult industry came after meeting Jacky St. James. Boheme passed St. James a selection of her erotic short stories. Soon after, she received a call requesting some short vignettes for Digital Sin and New Sensations. “Actually, I think it was a series of text messages.

confidence and an inability to say No to people, it was now up to me to figure out what the hell Booty Thirst Trap was about. I ended up being inspired by Dragnet reruns I was watching in a hotel room — “The stories you are about to see are true, the names have been changed to protect the innocent…” A lot of the script work I’ve been hired for seems to boil down to “Can you do it right now, and can you do it fast?” Porn work moves so much more quickly than writing for the theater.  I think the longest I’ve had to work on a script was one week. The shortest: 24 hours. There are endless silly, offensive jokes about porn that boil down to “What script?!” Can you describe what goes into crafting a great pornspecific screenplay?

I’m way too shy for phone calls,” Boheme explained. “And just like that, I was a fancy pants porn writing machine.” As of today, Boheme has completed ten adult feature films, half of which have earned award nominations and wins, and a number of short vignettes. Her first full-length feature film script was Gone, a project completed for Angie Rowntree and Within the context of contemporary adult entertainment, with all its strictures (as well as freedoms), in a world where people often seem content to squint at stray images on a tube site, being a script writer certainly comes with a set of unique challenges. We asked Boheme to share her insights regarding just a few of them.

I often embrace those silly and offensive jokes surrounding porn and porn scripts. For example, Back Door Pass  is a film full of those stereotypical porn setups. You know, stuff like the pizza delivery guy with his large sausage. I think that was one of the most fun films to write. Crafting a porn-specific script isn’t a whole lot different than crafting a script for the stage. It all boils down to every character wanting something and giving them a reason to be in the story, even if that something is just a glass of water. There is nothing worse than watching a sex scene where someone just shows up for no reason, has sex, then disappears without a trace. WHO ARE THEY?! WHAT DO THEY WANT?! So, I try to build a coherent story with characters that are after

YNOT: I imagine you write for projects that allow a lot of creative freedom, as well as for ones that have relatively strict guidelines. Can you tell us about these processes? Kitten Boheme: While working with Jonathan Morgan and Wicked Pictures, I had complete freedom.  I was able to write any story I wanted so long as it was funny,  featured a strong female lead,  was  able to be  shot in minimal locations and stayed under a certain number of pages. I came up with all kinds of wild ideas! Not all of them made it to screen, but I’m pretty proud of the ones that did. For Booty Thirst Trap, I was called by Andre Madness and he said something like, “I’ve got this script idea for you, but I don’t know what it’s about… All I have is a title, and I want it to be a series of vignettes. Can you do it?” Armed with nothing but  an abnormally  high level of


in the same handful of mansions, how do I make my porn in a mansion stand out? I have also bumped into problems with industry lawyers. Some of the scripts I worked on had to be signed off by a lawyer, and there was this one particular script I wrote that was instantly denied because this lawyer thought it wasn’t believable that a brother and a sister would live together and that the younger sister would be the responsible breadwinner and the brother would be a mooching deadbeat. Somehow a script with witches and curses or time travel was more believable than a successful young woman. After a bit of a fight though, this script did end up being accepted.

something, although in the confines of a porn script it sometimes gets a little more complicated because you are more limited to what you can do – because, budgets. I also try really hard to arrive at the sex scenes naturally. I try to avoid two characters chatting about their pet fish then, out of nowhere, they bang. I need to give them a reason to want to get it on. I feel like my job is writing dialogue that makes the characters into fully fleshed out persons who are believable in scenarios where sex is the necessary  and most obvious conclusion to what’s going on. What industry-specific consider when writing?




The limitations seem endless sometimes. The biggest is budget. I’m often told I can write whatever I want, but it all has to take place in a house, which kind of narrows down the kinds of stories that can be written. It’s hard to write a sweeping historical drama when it all has to take place in a mansion in the hills.

Sometimes the [performers] themselves are a limitation. I’ve been told to write parts for people that don’t speak much English or that they only have a few hours to learn lines so keep it simple. There’s also the odd “Well, we’ve hired someone who is terrible at learning lines, but they’re the star so give them most of lines.” But, most of the time, the performers are absolute superstars. I am always amazed to see what they do with a script I’ve given them. For example, check out how amazing Whitney Wright was in the movie Cursed. What she did with that role was kickbutt awesome!

Kitten Boheme has a couple of stories that are really close to her heart, so she is launching her own studio – PornCat Productions. Hire her for script writing,  sex toy reviews and erotic stories. Find her on Twitter at @ KittenBoheme.

This is also a great time to try to get extra creative though. If 85 percent — a totally made up number I pulled out of my ass just now — of scripts take place

About the Author

Erika Chan

is a sex positive people watcher (and writer). Email her at



Featured Article

Lee Roy Myers: Right Where He Should Be – By Chance By Gene Zorkin In the personal backstories of many successful people, we’re often told how they worked for years towards a goal they set for themselves when they were very young. Professional athletes, for instance, often tell of how they knew, almost from the first time they tossed, dribbled or caught a ball, that their destiny was to be a pro ball player. From there, it was just a matter of putting in the work to reach their goals. Not all success stories follow this familiar pattern, though. Sometimes, happenstance plays a central role – even when the person in question and their eventual career seem so perfectly matched, it’s understandable to assume they always planned to be on the path they now tread. When YNOT asked Director Lee Roy Myers, the man


behind WoodRocket titles like Aladdick, Red Dead Erection and Strokemon, what drove his decision to specialize in adult parodies, he offered a response which speaks to the impact life’s happy accidents can have. “To be honest, I didn’t really choose parodies,” Myers said. “And don’t get me wrong – if I could choose my dream pornographic genre to make, it would be parodies. I grew up on MAD Magazine and Weird Al albums and Mel Brooks movies. But, when I got my first offer to write a porno for a studio, it just evolved into me writing a parody, which I ended up directing since nobody else at the studio was available to shoot it.” What’s more, even the fact that the first porn script he wrote was for a parody movie was something that occurred by chance.

“Scott (Taylor), the owner of New Sensations, asked if I could write a comedic XXX feature about an office in Porn Valley,” Myers explained. “It just so happened that that time coincided with The Office finding an audience on American TV and both the Brady porn and Palin porn had just come out and showed some new signs of life for porn parodies. So, Scott and I talked about it, and I ended up writing my first porn parody, which I ended up directing, which turned into a career of writing and directing and producing adult parodies.” Judging by the ongoing popularity of WoodRocket’s parodies, the coincidences involved couldn’t have involved a better recipient of their accidental bounty. As someone once said of the perfect timing of the rise of legendary rock guitarist Jimi Hendrix: “It could have been anyone, but it had to be him.” The mainstream works that Myers now chooses to parody, on the other hand, certainly aren’t arrived upon by chance – and the selection process goes well beyond choosing a title which lends itself to innuendo-laden wordplay.

“After we figure out what makes our ‘Will Probably Have an Audience List’ we discuss whether the storylines or themes give us enough to work with to actually create a parody of it,” Myers explained. “Those are the main focusses for us when choosing what to spoof.” Myers said that while the creative process at WoodRocket remains similar to the one he described to Complex. com in a profile of the company published in 2015, “our process for picking parodies has changed slightly since WoodRocket started.” “The difference is that we work with Pornhub on parodies too now, so they’ve become an important part of our process,” Myers said. “The porn parodies we choose are usually the result of the whole WoodRocket team brainstorming and asking ourselves the questions, ‘What do we like?’, ‘What do other people like?’, ‘What are people talking about?’, and ‘Will it make a good porn parody?’. Then we discuss with the Pornhub team what their audience is

“Usually the way it works is that the whole WoodRocket team discusses movies, shows, games, stage shows that are either out or coming out and whether they are popular enough to parody, first and foremost,” Myers said. “Without an audience, we are just making porn for nobody to masturbate to.” Once they have determined any given work is sufficiently popular to be worth targeting for parody, other considerations are then taken into account.


looking for and which ideas they think will be successful.” While adding more cooks to the kitchen sometimes has a negative impact on creative processes, Myers said the collaboration between WoodRocket and Pornhub has benefited the final product. “We’ve evolved, and I think it’s allowed us to make some of our best parodies yet,” he said. “And if not our best, at least our bodypaintiest.” Given how often critics and pundits (mostly mainstream ones) express trauma over seeing cherished TV shows, movies and video games parodied by WoodRocket, it’s reasonable to ask: Is there anything Myers and WoodRocket simply won’t parody? “Absolutely,” Myers told YNOT. “For me, I try to avoid anything that would hurt anyone. So, anything about victims that relates to real experiences seems like it would be a little too fucked up for me to ‘funny-up’ and add some porking. So, anything about rape or diseases or genocide

or molestation or assault – even though that last one has the word ‘ass’ in it – I avoid.” Unsurprisingly, in terms of his comedic influences, Myers cites many of the same auteurs of classic parodies he enjoyed as a kid – along with a tip of the hat to the porn satirists who blazed the trail his company has since taken to new heights. “I love Mel Brooks. I remember watching Blazing Saddles over and over and over growing up, starting when I was too young to even understand the references,” Myers said. “He will always be at the top of my list, but also on the list are Weird Al and MAD Magazine and Troma and Mystery Science Theater and now Rifftrax – and of course, 1980’s/1990’s porn parodies. I probably owe a handshake of thanks to Edward Penishands.” The latest co-production from WoodRocket and Pornhub is the musical XXX parody “Aladdick.” Fans can stay abreast of the studio’s latest parody titles by checking out and Pornhub’s WoodRocket channel every month for new releases.

About the Author Gene Zorkin has been covering legal and political issues for various adult publications (and under a variety of different pen names) since 2002.



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Featured Article

Lance Hart: 3D Chess and the Art of Compelling Content By Mallory Hall Lance Hart was in his first porn as a performer in 2007, and he started performing professionally about a year later. He also has a long history as a clips maker, with Clips4Sale updates that go back to 2011.

So many, in fact, that he’s maybe lost count.

“In 2010, I bought a Handycam from Walmart at three AM and started my own production,” Hart explained. “I’ve never had a ‘normal’ job since then.”

“I’m not sure how many clips I’ve made. It’s over 1000, but I’m not sure if it’s more than 5000,” he shared with YNOT. “For a while, I posted new clips daily on the internet. Now, I shoot about three to seven days a month for my productions. I’ve found that making less updates, but making them better, works out for more profit, in my case, at this point in time.”

Creative and prolific, Hart has made a lot of clips.

From the volume of content he produces to the


variable and evolving categories and genres his work embodies, Hart recognizes the need to change up his game. By being mindful of consumer desires and production trends, Lance says that “deciding what content to make next is like a game of 3D chess that I’ve gotten very good at.”

stuff is, what the market on that site is trending to buy more of and strategize from there. How do you — as in “you, the performer starring in most of your content” — fit into your directorial and editing work? I was in almost all my clips for years. It’s tricky doing sex work while trying to look sexy, while trying to direct and at the same time decide where the clip needs to go next. I loved it, but honestly I’ve found that I make more money and everyone is just happier when I direct other people in my clips. It costs more money to just be the director, but the content is better. I had to grow into it financially. In your view, what makes compelling content?   It has to make the viewer’s dick tingle. They have to

Hart took time out to share a bit of his chess playing strategies with YNOT, tapping into creating compelling content in various forms, throughout a decade of learning. YNOT: You work in an array of content forms, but what draws you to the clips form specifically? Lance Hart: I started with clips, so I understand how to make them profitable and the best. Currently, I actually make more money from my membership sites  and sweetfemdom. com  than I do from my clip sales on other platforms. This is new, as of this year. I’m happy about it, but honestly, I don’t know what I’m doing with updating membership sites. I’m still learning as I go. On clip sites like, doing the updates and deciding what content to make next is like a game of 3D chess that I’ve gotten very good at. I can see what other producers are doing, how their rankings go up and down, what their top selling


enjoy masturbating to it and want more. That’s all. It does not have to be “good film” with perfect lighting, continuity, character development, great sets, etc. All that stuff is for film that is made for watching. Porn is made for jerking off — huge difference. Many content producers get mixed up, thinking they are making something for Hollywood. It



does not matter if you catch the extension cord and lights or clutter of a model’s suitcase in the background. Continuity doesn’t matter. Almost no one watches a porn from 0:00 to the end, in order. They skip around. They generally watch the middle and the end first, then maybe decide to watch the whole thing the next time they jerk off to it. You can make people’s dick tingle with about two seconds of footage. That’s what matters. Give them plenty of two second options to make their dicks tingle in a twenty-minute video, and they will be happy.

based, so mainstream content makers that just wanted to film hot sex couldn’t make much money on Clips4Sale unless they sprinkled in some fetish stuff. ManyVids came along and marketed well to people who want to see “normal” sex, so now we have both covered. The industry — in the case of this question, being performers who want to make money from home — tends to make clips because they are quick and easy to make. Also they don’t have to commit to updating a membership site regularly. They can just make content here and there, and nobody is waiting for more from them. What industry-specific limitations must you consider when producing clips? Conversely, what opportunities do you have to be extra creative? I make content mostly with crossover male performers, so I have to consider that when booking female talent to work with them. I just have to find agents and models who are comfortable with working with crossovers. It’s not hard these days, but I do have to think about it. Shooting the kind of content I shoot allows me to be insanely creative. I can literally have insane plots. It’s a hoot. Find Lance Hart on Twitter at @lancehartfetish and on Instagram at @lancehartandcats.

Clips have been around forever, but it seems like the industry is really focusing in on that specific form lately. Have you noticed this too? Things certainly always change and grow. Clips4Sale did us a great service by being the first platform to sell clips. The nature of their traffic is mostly fetish-

About the Author Mallory Hall is from Central Texas. She has worked in journalism since her university years and enjoys exploring unexpected occurrences in ordinary places.


Featured Article

Are Obscenity Prosecution Concerns Obsolete? By Gene Zorkin Back in the late 90’s, when I first began working in the adult entertainment industry, I sat down for a meeting with an attorney to talk about a broad swath of legal issues facing my employer. The company I worked for was among the first video streaming services in the adult internet industry, and in addition to offering content we produced ourselves, we were signing content licensing deals as quickly as we could, seeking to expand our offerings


across numerous niches and categories. Over the months and years to come, the same attorney would occasionally review samples of content we were digitizing. One afternoon, he landed upon clip which literally made him gasp out loud. The producer/director of the source video was Max Hardcore – which, if you’re familiar with the name, probably gives you a good idea of how our attorney reacted.

“This…” he said, trailing off as his eyebrows climbed towards his hairline. “Well, this is problematic, to say the least.” What ensued was one of many conversations we would have about obscenity law, the Miller Test and the continuous rumblings out of Congress about how ‘something must be done’ to address the growing ubiquity of online porn. “Keep in mind that it’s not just illegal to produce content deemed obscene,” the attorney admonished me at one point. “It’s also illegal to distribute obscene materials – which means you guys could be on the hook for anything it streams by this ‘Max’ person, if a jury finds it obscene.” Ultimately, the company decided to take the risk of streaming Max Hardcore’s content – or some of it, at least. We opted to split the difference between not carrying any of Max’s work and carrying all of it, omitting certain titles we thought were more likely to draw the ire of prosecutors than others. At the time, the adult industry was not far removed from the last spate of vigorous obscenity law enforcement, which took place over a time frame that spanned the Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush administrations. Back then, you couldn’t attend a legal seminar at an adult trade event without hearing extensively about the risks of being targeted in an obscenity prosecution. While President Bill Clinton would eventually become

better known for his own sexual exploits than as any sort of decency crusader, he did sign both the Communications Decency Act and the Child Online Protection Act, both of which aimed to rein in the proliferation of online porn. Later came George W. Bush – and, more to the point where obscenity is concerned, Attorney General John Ashcroft, who reportedly had reinvigorating federal obscenity prosecutions high on his list of priorities, until the terrorist attacks of September 11 forced a major shift in focus for the entire U.S. government. Back in those days, some studios, directors and distributors in the adult space used a kind of riskavoidance checklist attributed to attorney Paul Cambria – appropriately nicknamed the “Cambria List” – as a guide for reducing the risk of prosecution. Sitting here in 2019, years away from the last highprofile federal obscenity prosecution, it’s amazing how much things have changed in adult content production over the last 20 years. Looking over the bullet points on the Cambria List, it’s hard to imagine too many current adult content producers heeding guidelines like “no black men-white women themes” or “no transsexuals” or “no two dicks in/near one mouth.” Late last year, when I asked Jeffrey Douglas, the Board Chair of the Free Speech Coalition (and veteran of several obscenity prosecutions as a defense attorney, including one in which his client


was the aforementioned Max Hardcore), Douglas told me that there’s “almost no chance that there will be significant resources assigned to obscenity prosecutions” by the federal government, going forward. “In the highly unlikely event that significant resources are assigned to prosecuting adult obscenity cases… the material would have to be at the extreme end of extreme,” Douglas added. “Jurors have experienced the proliferation of free sexually explicit materials on the Web. They are unlikely to be receptive to criminalizing materials that are available to everyone.” Does this mean that adult content producers can forget about obscenity prosecutions? Are the concerns which caused Paul Cambria to author his famous list now entirely obsolete? It would be comforting if the answers to these questions was a solid and resounding ‘yes’ – but as with so many legal issues, the outlook on obscenity law simply isn’t so clear and convenient. “Obscenity is still a relevant topic for legal advice to any adult industry client,” attorney Larry Walters recently told me – although he conceded that looking over the industry landscape and the content currently being produced, “it does appear that the industry as a whole has become less concerned with specific content restrictions, aside from some


extreme fetishes and anything depicting lack of consent.” “The Cambria List was a handy reference tool but was never intended as a comprehensive description of legal versus obscene content categories,” Walters noted. “Any type of adult content could be deemed obscene by some judge or jury, depending on the overall serious value of the material and the geographic jurisdiction bringing the charges.” Walters also agreed that the declining relevance of guidelines like the Cambria list does flow, at least to some extent, from the government’s relatively laissez-faire attitude towards porn in recent years — but he also cautioned that one can never be certain the obscenity law enforcement pendulum won’t swing back in the other direction in the future. “Some of the categories on the Cambria List have become common fare in the adult industry, largely based on the lack of regular obscenity prosecutions and evolving social mores,” Walters said. “However, this could change quickly if state or federal officials decide to try their hand at renewed prosecutions.” Walters also observed that while the public’s disposition toward pornography may have shifted to greater acceptance and tolerance, there’s ample evidence that lawmakers haven’t followed suit.


“The new wave of state-level legislative resolutions declaring pornography to be a public health crisis may be an attempt to enhance the government’s ability to win obscenity prosecutions,” Walters speculated. “Presumably, the government would argue that the state has deemed the content to be dangerous to public health, and therefore it cannot have serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value (i.e., one of the elements of the obscenity test). Whether any court or jury would accept such an argument remains to be seen, but some prosecutor may try. Ultimately, it is up to a judge or jury to decide whether a certain work is obscene, not some political body.” Is it possible the government might try a slightly different tact than in years past, specifying certain sex acts as forbidden to depict, rather than relying on the vagaries of how a jury applies the Miller Test? Walters said such an approach likely wouldn’t survive the scrutiny of the courts.

“Any legal restriction on a specific category of adult content would almost certainly be struck down on First Amendment grounds,” Walters said. “The Miller Test remains the only judicially-approved method of determining whether sexually oriented content can be deemed obscene, and therefore illegal.” What all this adds up to is a familiar ambiguity where the prospect of obscenity prosecutions is concerned – something which hasn’t changed since the early days of the adult internet space. “In the end, state and federal obscenity prohibitions still exist and the industry must be prepared to defend any content it produces in the event a criminal charge is filed,” Walters said. “The likelihood of such charges in the current environment can be debated but the threat remains so long as the laws remain on the books.”

About the Author Gene Zorkin has been covering legal and political issues for various adult publications (and under a variety of different pen names) since 2002.



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Hookahqueeen: Balancing Customer Wants, Content Creation and Human Integrity By Mallory Hall Hookahqueeen started camming, in 2014.





“I have always enjoyed sharing my most intimate moments, my talents and my body with those who support and respect me as a woman in charge of her body,” she told YNOT. “I chose sex work [as a career] because it’s my passion.” For Hookahqueeen, a desire to help others is a significant motivating factor in her work.


“I love pleasuring others, making people smile and laugh and helping those feel confident and comfortable with themselves and their sexuality,” she explained. There are irksome aspects to all types of work though, and cam is no exception. “With camming, it’s a lot of sitting around and waiting. There are also many viewers who demand things for free,” Hookahqueeen said.


As such, she added clips making to her repertoire in 2015 — but “it’s been on and off since then due to being a mom.” To date, Hookahqueeen estimates she’s made about 200 clips. “I try to produce as many clips as possible… I wish I had time to film more, but I’m very busy with camming and my premium Snapchat… I’m averaging about two to three clips a month,” she said. “I prefer creating clips because I can do whatever I want with them. I’m my own boss. I’m able to launch a diverse selection of content where there’s something for everyone to enjoy. I also love taking requests to ensure everyone’s pleasure,” she continued.

content has everything to do with being real and showing that I’m having fun,” Hookahqueeen said, which — to me — sounds applicable to both media forms. Further, “My supporters are a huge part of this process. I pay attention to everyone’s requests and interests and go from there.”

Between cam and clips, though related in many ways, the content creation processes are fairly distinct – but is creating compelling content for clips markedly different from creative compelling content on cam? “In my personal experience, creating compelling


According to Hookahqueeen, keeping up with content trends isn’t too important – unless, of course, her fans and followers request a certain trend often. But sometimes fans’ interests and requests can drift into challenging, problematic territory. It’s important that models and performers be aware of certain issues when fielding consumer demands. “There are so many opportunities for content creation requested by fans that [a] majority of us aren’t comfortable fulfilling,” Hookahqueeen explained. “The industry is evolving tremendously,




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ethnicities, religions, genders and cultures aside from their own. This is something that needs to be more widely discussed.” “With every part of the industry in mind, we have to be careful not to offend anyone or break any rules,” she added. Within the context of contemporary sex work and sex work online, Hookahqueeen is quick to point out that stigma and double – or even triple – standards still exist. “There is such a negative stigma surrounding sex work. People can’t get over others profiting off of their bodies [but] sex work is real work,” she stated. “We are highly educated, talented, determined, tax-paying members of society. Many of us went to college, obtained degrees [and] have other professions but chose sex work because it’s our passion and we enjoy doing what we love. Sex work isn’t just about the money.” In fact, according to Hookahqueeen, there is so much about sex work that benefits society and humanity at large. “To me, it’s about pleasuring others, self-love, empowering each other, forming bonds with our supporters and having fun,” she explained. “This industry is filled with passionate, hard-working individuals who get to be whatever they want to be.” 100 percent agree. and we have to keep everyone in mind when producing content.”

Find Hookahqueeen online via

According to Hookahqueeen, a few things to keep in mind when considering content production, consumer requests and one’s own comfort levels include race, gender, sexual orientation, religion and culture. “I see many content creators who overstep their boundaries and blatantly ignore the hurt that their content has on people,” she said. “[Content creators are] doing things to belittle people of other

About the Author Mallory Hall is from Central Texas. She has worked in journalism since her university years and enjoys exploring unexpected occurrences in ordinary places.


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YNOT Magazine, Issue Y19-04  

YNOT Magazine provides business coverage for the adult entertainment industry. Each issue is packed with insightful and compelling business...

YNOT Magazine, Issue Y19-04  

YNOT Magazine provides business coverage for the adult entertainment industry. Each issue is packed with insightful and compelling business...