After Utah rejects comprehensive sex ed, porn site offers sex-ed videos to Utahns.

After Utah Rejects Comprehensive Sex Ed, Porn Site Offers Sex-Ed Videos to Utahns

After Utah Rejects Comprehensive Sex Ed, Porn Site Offers Sex-Ed Videos to Utahns

The XX Factor
What Women Really Think
Feb. 10 2017 12:08 PM

After Utah Rejects Comprehensive Sex Ed, Porn Site Offers Sex-Ed Videos to Utahns

Each one teach one.


After Utah lawmakers rejected a bill that would have provided an alternative to its abstinence-based approach to sexual education in schools on Monday, a surprising organization stepped in to fill the educational gap: a porn site.

On Wednesday, the porn site xHamster altered its website so that when users with Utah-based IP addresses log on, they are asked if they’d like to be redirected to xHamster’s series of nonpornographic sex-ed videos. In a (NSFW) blog post, xHamster says it decided to proactively offer Utahns the educational videos both because of the legislature’s recent rejection of the comprehensive sex-ed bill and because “over the past few years, politicians in the state have … waged war on porn.” Indeed, last year the state legislature unanimously passed a resolution declaring porn a “public health crisis,” even though there’s no solid evidence that porn is harmful.


“Utahns consume the most porn per capita of any state, but have some of the lowest levels of sexual education,” xHamster states in its blog post. “We’re here to change that.” The notion that Utah has the highest per-capita porn consumption in the nation comes from a 2009 analysis of credit cards used to pay for online porn, which means it doesn’t necessarily reflect the habits of people who watch porn for free. Still, if Utah lawmakers really think porn is a public health crisis, you’d think they’d want to provide an alternative for teens looking for information about sex.

The proposed sex-ed bill, HB215, would have required the state to provide both abstinence-based and comprehensive sexual education options, giving the parents the option to choose either program or to have their child opt out of sex ed altogether. The bill died in committee. Currently, Utah prohibits sex-ed instructors from advocating contraceptive use, premarital sex, or homosexuality.

XHamster is not the only porn site branching out to sex education. Pornhub, an even more popular site, launched its own educational center in partnership with a clinical psychologist on Feb. 1. The site offers “content about basic sexual anatomy, different STDs and STIs and general reproductive health.”

XHamster’s rebuke to Utah’s state legislature seems more like a PR move than a genuine attempt to educate, but it’s also a cheeky way of pointing out that porn is not a substitute for evidence-based education. “While we love porn,” says xHamster’s blog post, “we don’t think it should be relied on for sex ed any more than Star Wars is a substitute for science.”

Molly Olmstead is a Slate assistant social media editor.