What is the average American porn star like?

What is the average American porn star like? Is this a question you’ve asked yourself? Even if it is, I’ll guarantee you didn’t go as far as Jon Millward in trying to find out. Millward has created a report along with article summary, infographics and more trying to get an answer.

I can’t recall how I first heard about the Internet Adult Film Database—the self-proclaimed ‘premier resource for information about the American porn community on the web’, but for the longest time I knew I wanted to plunder its treasure trove of juicy information. It holds the records of over 120,000 porn films and 115,000 adult performers and is the adult equivalent of the Internet Movie Database. In a nutshell, if you’re a fan of porn or porn stars and want to look up almost anything to do with either—whether it’s the release date of Dude, I Banged Your Mother 6, or the first time Courtney Cummz had sex on film with a black man—you go to IAFD.com.

The database started out as a labour of love for Dutchman Peter Van Aarle, who in 1981 began keeping records on index cards about the porn films he watched in his home town’s adult cinema. By 1999, he’d teamed up with other X-rated record keepers to form IAFD—a place where a handful of international contributors compile masses of information on porn stars and their films, while site visitors are welcome to submit corrections and suggestions—the Wikipedia of porn, if you will. In 2011, it was visited by 20 million people, one of whom was me.

Fast forward a year and I’d found a way to (somewhat nefariously, but with honourable intentions) extract thousands of records from the database. Now the treasure trove was split wide open and reams of information was spilling forth into my Excel spreadsheets—names of performers, their heights and weights, their races, the sex acts they perform on film…everything. Finally I was able to scrutinize adult performers in a way no man, despite regular attempts to do so, had ever managed before, and find out once and for all which stereotypes about porn stars are true, which are bogus, and what these men and women have been doing for the last forty years. The results of my analysis, apart from the article you’re reading now, are the biggest infographic I’ve ever created (definitely check out it out if you’d like a colourful overview of every single result) and a pretty comprehensive report on the whole endeavour…

You can get all of the information Jon has put together here. It’s definitely an interesting read, and also goes into a bit on the demographics of escorts in the United Kingdom.

Statistics only tell a part of the story though. Certainly there is a need to actually talk with the people involved themselves and hear what the sex workers have to say in their own words.

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