Creative Commons | by James Alcock

Showing how out of touch the UK government really is, a frankly bizarre new piece of legislation – the ‘‘ – came into effect in a rather under the radar fashion on Monday. The new law, an amendment of the Communications Act 2003, censors a number of sex acts in VoD (Video on Demand) pornography made or sold within the United Kingdom, including – but not limited to – spanking, strangulation and penetration by any object “associated with violence”. Facesitting and fisting are also included in there, as well as (in a quite frankly rather sexist inclusion) new laws on showing female ejaculation, as male ejaculation goes apparently unregulated.

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The reasoning behind the new law is based around protecting those under the age of 18 – however in reality the legislation is surely more likely to impact on consenting (paying) adults. After all, what under-18 is likely to actually pay for porn when it is so easily accessible online for no cost?

As Lauren Razavi , “it’s not young people who are subscribing and accessing paid-for content online; these kinds of sites normally require a credit card or PayPal account to get past their paywalls. The new rules do nothing to address free, non-regulated content produced in other countries and uploaded to global streaming websites. So it begs the question, what’s the point of all this?”

“Not only is the law misguided, it’s also deeply sexist. Showing female ejaculation on screen has been outlawed completely, while male ejaculation (on the face, breasts, feet, backside, wherever) faces no direct restrictions. Is female ejaculation really so vulgar and explicit that people shouldn’t see it, in pornography or anywhere else?

Restrictions on fisting, facesitting and which objects can be inserted into an adult’s body are included too. Regulating depictions of these acts – those relating directly to female sexual pleasure – make it seem like society is at risk from exposure to women’s enjoyment of sex, at least according to the government.”

Joel Golby of Vice UK in his coverage by asking the British Board of Film Classification (the ‘Jizz Police’) why they differentiate between male and female ejaculate. The response from the BBFC was predictably cringey.

“The BBFC is required to seek to avoid classifying material that is likely to be considered in breach of the Obscene Publications Act,” the BBFC told us. “According to the advice we take from the police and the CPS, sex works featuring  urolagnia [the gaining of sexual pleasure from urination] are likely to be considered obscene.

“Therefore, unless it’s very clear that what is being shown is indeed ‘female ejaculation’, as opposed to urolagnia, the Board’s position has to be that scenes of this nature featuring liquid that might be urine have to be cut. The situation is further complicated, for us, by the fact that medical advice we have taken has suggested that some scenes submitted to us that purported to show ‘female ejaculation’ were, in fact, urination.”

If you pay for your porn, your viewing habits are likely to become slightly more pedestrian. If not then this law is not likely to impact upon you at all. However, the path of censorship should always be questioned, especially when it is the path of the government.

“First they came for the paid-for porn, and I did not speak out – because I was not a VoD user. Then they came for the free porn, and I did not speak out – because I didn’t have a stable internet connection. Then they came for me – and there was no one left to speak out for me” as the saying goes.

Jason Murdock | |

Image Credit: by James Alcock | Used with thanks under Creative Commons |