Pink & White Productions — Why Ethical Porn?

Article by · May 10, 2017 ·

Above Photo: Director Shine Louise Houston talks with performers Arabelle Raphael and Devorah before she and videographer Ajapornfilms record the behind the scenes interview. Photo: CrashPadSeries.com.

“I believe there’s a lot of room and need to create adult content that’s respectful and powerful… I think it’s the perfect place to become political. It’s a place where money, sex, media, and ethics converge.” — Shine Louise Houston, owner Pink and White Productions

“I’ve performed in porn for over 12 years. The only time I’ve felt ‘exploited’ is when I find my work pirated on tube sites! If consumers are concerned about ‘ethical porn’ then they need to think about ethical consumption. Ethical porn starts when you pay for it.” -Jiz Lee, performer/producer Pink and White Productions

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At Pink and White Productions, we believe that being an ethical porn producer means respecting our cast and crew, the people we work with and the city we work in, as well as the people who purchase our content. There are a number of ways we strive to do this, balancing transparency, communication, and business policy. We don’t believe ‘ethical porn’ is a static identity or an adult film genre, but rather a best business (and life) practice which we can all work and aspire towards.

Many of us at Pink and White Productions have backgrounds in sex education, and as many of us are or were performers ourselves, we recognize and align with the policies outlined by the Adult Performer Advocacy Committee in the Model Bill of Rights and Performer Code of Conduct, as well as the Industry Code of Conduct as outlined by the Free Speech Coalition, the adult industry’s trade association.

ethical porn

Performers Papi Coxxx and Golden Curlz switch mid-scene. Photo: CrashPadSeries.com

Some ways we do it, with CrashPadSeries.com

We do our best to communicate clearly and appropriately about how we work and what we expect from others, as well as what they can expect from us. These check-ins happen throughout the production process, from a performer’s application to how content is displayed and promoted. We do a check-in on set prior to filming that includes everything from our building’s emergency plan to asserting that performers can pause or end a scene if they no longer feel safe or comfortable. Performers script their own sex scenes in collaboration with our director and crew, deciding what they want to their name to be, what to wear, and what sexual health precautions are best for them. Our check-ins about what will happen on set are for the benefit of both cast and the crew – we think our camera operators have the right to consent to what will be filmed as well. We plan our production days to keep time on set to a minimum (usually under 3 hours total time on location, with roughly 30-45 minutes of on-camera activity) and provide light snacks based on everyone’s dietary needs. We provide amenities such as toiletries and hygiene supplies, bathrobe and shower. We pay the day of the production, an equal rate: performers are paid the same regardless of their gender, race, age, experience, or what they want to do on camera.

Sexual Health

We encourage both P.A.S.S. system testing and sexual barriers, however as we usually work with fluid-bonded partners, we ultimately trust that performers know what’s best for their bodies. We provide sexual health resources for risk-assessment, STI testing facilities, and stock an ample supply of safer sex items (condoms, dams, gloves in latex and non-latex options as well as several varieties of glycerin-free body-safe lubricants).

Marketing

We livestream our productions to subscribers, a ‘pornopticon’ where the porn-curious can observe how we work. We film post-scene interviews where performers can share what was difficult about the experience, what was rewarding, why they choose to do porn, how they choose to practice safer sex, and anything else they want to share. We feel these are important to supplement the experience for performers and viewers alike.

When we promote the content, we try as much as possible to use the same language performers would want us to use to describe them. We collect profile information from performers – they can put whatever descriptions, tags, pronouns, and other language they choose to use for themselves and/or their sex work. We do not categorize our films by demographic information about the performers; we aim to represent healthy queer sexuality that is rich in diversity without tokenizing difference.

Along those lines, we also do not provide a ‘rating’ system for our content; we notice that ‘scoring’ sexually diverse films often is skewed by cultural biases. On adult sites you will often see viewers ‘thumbs down’ a film or a scene, and there seems to be a pattern if it features, for example, people of color, people of size, or trans people most especially when those films are not niche-specific. We want to avoid policing performers’ bodies with rigid and unnecessary categories, or subscribe to a hierarchy of sexualities or desires.

ethical porn

Performers Nikki Darling and Jack HammerXL in BED PARTY. Photo: PinkLabel.tv.

Some ways we do it, with PinkLabel.tv:

PinkLabel.tv is a hub for emerging and independent producers, especially those who might not yet be able to afford their own website, due to high costs of credit card processors working with adult content. Films are curated by Pink and White Director Shine Louise Houston, looking for artistic excellence, reflecting experiences by those often outside or other-ed by adult distribution, such as queer and trans sexuality, people of color, size, and disabilities, and creative projects that are erotic or explicit in content that are often excluded from mainstream video channels.

We hope to educate other filmmakers so that they can avoid mistakes and have the best experience for themselves and those they work with. We offer resources on PinkLabel.tv to help people know what to consider when making a content trade, or what paperwork they’ll need to distribute their work.

We believe that ethical porn production goes hand-in-hand with ethical consumption. We work to protect content from piracy on free tube sites where work is often reposted without the consent or benefit of those involved, and we hope to educate viewers about #payforyourporn and the value of paying for porn. PinkLabel.tv provides a generous revenue and affiliate program for its studios with the intention to create a sustainable independent film industry that expands the erotic cinematic landscape.

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Pink and White Productions creates adult entertainment that exposes the complexities of queer sexual desire. Taking inspiration from many different sources, Pink and White is dedicated to producing sexy and exciting images that reflect today’s blurred gender lines and fluid sexualities. The company was founded in 2005 by queer filmmaker Shine Louise Houston. Graduating from San Francisco Arts Institute with a Bachelors in Fine Art Film, Houston’s works have become the new gold standard of adult cinema. During a five year position at the women-owned, sex toy purveyor Good Vibrations, Shine recognized an underserved demand for an alternative to mainstream pornography, and began to create well-crafted queer made porn. Her films have been recognized among the next big wave of women produced porn and have been internationally screened from Amsterdam to New Zealand. Houston newest feature film, SNAPSHOT, is an erotic suspense thriller starring queer women of color.

For more information, follow @PinkWhite and @ShineLouise on Twitter.

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