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Tailor-Made Porn is Becoming a Thing (Finally)

Tailor-Made Porn is Becoming a Thing (Finally): ILLUSTRATION BY TODD DETWILER

ILLUSTRATION BY TODD DETWILER

Mijikai Kakikomi’s fantasy—two overtired parents squeezing in a quickie among a sea of toys—is not exactly standard porn fare. Yet a short erotic film based exclusively on his most intimate desires was produced for his viewing pleasure. Sitting down to watch the custom-made 10-minute romp for the first time, Kakikomi was curious and aroused. Afterward, he had one thought: “That’s porn on demand.”

This is the work of Erika Lust, the Swedish-born adult-film maker who runs XConfessions, a website that turns users’ desires into adult content. Every month Lust selects user-submitted “confessions” like Kakikomi’s, which she and her Barcelona-based crew then transform into erotic shorts. There’s no charge for this or for watching two of the films, but if you want access to the entire XConfessions catalog—including Boat Buddies With Benefits, Do You Find My Feet Suckable? and I Found Your Mother on Tinder—you’ll need a subscription.

Characters in Lust’s films are “like any guy or girl on the street,” she says. It’s porn with premium production values, chock-full of the hallmarks of real sex: sweat, grunts and skin. The verisimilitude is key. “It’s that idea that these little sex adventures could happen to them,” Lust says of her audience.

With porn accounting for an estimated 37 percent of internet content, the only thing you can’t google is desire itself. The industry of customized porn hopes to change that, to tailor the very fabric of porn around the limbs of our personal fantasies.

“Fantasies are a way to express a forbidden desire, to escape traditional gender roles,” says Justin Lehmiller, a social psychologist and author of the popular blog Sex and Psychology. “They serve to enhance sexual arousal.” For Lust, porn is about giving users an active role in what turns them on. In a market usually flooded by men, female viewers constitute 40 percent of XConfessions’ 70,000-member user base. Lust thinks personalized porn can upend the experience of erotica for viewers, especially women, who are often starved for reflections of themselves.

Timothy Stokely, CEO of Customs4U.com, wants to take the concept of personalized porn a step further by bringing it to the cam-girl fanatics. Users choose from more than 1,700 cam models and write up a brief description of what they want to see in their made-to-order experience. Models set their own prices, with amateurs charging as little as $20 and some porn stars commanding up to $1,000 for a 10-minute flick. “A custom video is a highly personal product,” says Stokely, “in contrast to say, sitting in a cam room with 10 other gentlemen or, worse, in a one-on-one chat with a model whose only interest is the time ticking down in the corner.”

Above all, what these custom pornographers hope to create is the most humanized porn experience yet.

“One woman once said to me, ‘I’m jealous of the sex the people are having in your films.’ That’s exactly the response I want,” says Lust. “If you can see yourself in my films, then that makes it even hotter, don’t you think?”

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