P Addiction gets a mention on BBC news

Discussion in 'Pornography Addiction' started by BryanHoward, Feb 29, 2016.

  1. BryanHoward

    BryanHoward Keep your hands where I can see them

    Good to see it getting some coverage, even if superficial.

  2. Gary Wilson

    Gary Wilson Active Member

    Notice how nearly every article trying to debunk porn addiction quotes the same two people: David Ley and Nicole Prause. From the BBC article:
    Let's examine the truth. First, Prause has not been employed at UCLA for over a year. From what I can see, she is not employed by any university.

    Second, Prause is discussing her own EEG study from 2015 (Prause et al., 2015), where heavy porn users had lower brain activation in response to one second exposure to photos of vanilla porn. In other words, heavy porn users differed from controls - in that they had habituated to porn, or were simply desensitized. Prause's EEG align with the findings of Kuhn & Gallinat 2014, which also used brief exposure to vanilla porn. See - Brain Structure and Functional Connectivity Associated With Pornography Consumption: The Brain on Porn (2014) http://yourbrainonporn.com/brain-structure-and-functional-connectivity-associated-pornography-consumption-2014

    You can read my analysis of Prause's 2015 EEG study here - Critique of "Modulation of Late Positive Potentials by Sexual Images in Problem Users and Controls Inconsistent with 'Porn Addiction' (2015)" http://www.yourbrainonporn.com/modulation-late-positive-potentials-sexual-images-problem-users-and-controls-inconsistent-porn

    But it's not just Gary who says Prause found evidence for desensitization in heavy porn users. Three peer-reviewed reviews of the literature agree with me. Below are the 3 papers with links to the excerpts discussing Prause et al., 2015:
    1) Neuroscience of Internet Pornography Addiction: A Review and Update (2015) - http://yourbrainonporn.com/neuroscience-internet-pornography-addiction-review-and-update-excerpt-critiquing-prause-et-al-2015

    2) Neurobiology of Compulsive Sexual Behavior: Emerging Science (2016) - http://yourbrainonporn.com/neurobiology-compulsive-sexual-behavior-emerging-science-2016

    3) Should compulsive sexual behavior be considered an addiction? (2016) - http://www.yourbrainonporn.com/should-compulsive-sexual-behavior-be-considered-addiction-2016-excerpt-analyzing-prause-et-al-2015

    Not only did the BBC allow Prause to cite her single study (which actually supports the porn addiction model), the BBC ignored the preponderance of neuroscience based evidence and brain studies on porn users. Here's my list of every neuroscience-based study published on porn users. http://yourbrainonporn.com/brain-scan-studies-porn-users
    It contains 22 recently published studies, and 4 literature reviews. All lend support to the porn addiction model.

    Note that the BBC, and many other media sources, ignore these many studies and never contact the researchers. These neuroscientists are some of the top researchers in the world (Voon, Potenza, Brand, Laier, Kraus, Kuhn, Gallinat), performing research at top institutions (Yale, Cambridge, Max Planck).
  3. BryanHoward

    BryanHoward Keep your hands where I can see them

    I agree with Mr Fish. I think this is less about trying to debunk and more about sub-par research into the subject on the part of the journalist. You also can't help but imagine that there might be an apologist lurking within the guilty mind of the journalist/editor!

    Regardless of the lack of substance in the "against" camp, I am pleased to see the "for" camp at least being anecdotally represented. Gary, you should reach out to them, I dare say they would interview you and go further...
  4. Loleekins

    Loleekins Nemo repente fuit turpissimus

    Propaganda machines are effective. The pro porn "porn is harmless fun" crowd have well oiled propaganda machines. In comparison, the ybop types of information outlets have very little. The main sources I have found in my reading and research about the detrimental results of porn use are stuffy science journals and publications that John Q Public isn't reading.

    One of the big problems I see with the 'porn as addiction' statement not being believed is due to silence. The vast majority of people suffering and fighting a porn habit are currently silent and stay silent. As long as there is self imposed stigma, there will be a lack of understanding in the general public. A few guys stepping up to the plate saying "this caused issues in my life" is exceedingly easy to write off as them being kooks. Hundreds of thousands or more, let's face it, worldwide you're probably talking about numbers in the millions, coming forward, speaking out...not too easy to write them off as kooks now.

    Terry Crews is one guy. The attempts to write him off as a kook have already started. There needs to be a chorus of voices behind him. The researchers and those affected. Jmho.
  5. Gary Wilson

    Gary Wilson Active Member

    I disagree. I have seen this pattern over and over of having only Ley and Prause as the "experts". The reader is left with impression that it's a fair and balanced article, due to the inclusion of nofap/reddit. However, the reader is also left with the impression that all the neuroscience points in one direction (porn addiction doesn't exist), when, in fact, all the neuroscience points in the opposite direction (porn addiction does exist). Mission accomplished.

    Why did the BBC choose Nicole Prause (U.S., and no university) when they have Valerie Voon of Cambridge university right there in the UK? Voon has published brain scan studies on porn addicts, and two reviews of the literature.
  6. BryanHoward

    BryanHoward Keep your hands where I can see them

    I do not think the tone was one of discrediting the phenomenon, I think it was sloppily researched. My guess is that the answer to your question is "Google told me", not an agenda.

    The message that I got was that the anecdotal evidence appeared to be discrediting the science, not vice versa. Of course, it would be better for a comprehensive science piece, but I see articles like this as a small step in the right direction. It's a dialogue and even though they are fumbling on the science there is growing concern about it.
  7. Loleekins

    Loleekins Nemo repente fuit turpissimus

    You're not wrong, but Gary isn't wrong either.

    The results of this sloppy journalism is propping up the "porn is dandy" crowd by furthering their visibility. Furthering their visibility just adds to their platform. If every time you read something in the media about porn, the only sources cited are Ley and Prause, people automatically assume credibility. The more visibility they attain through the apathetic (I'm just going to land some names in the article. POW! Credibility!) writers, the worse the problem gets by other sources of information being unsolicited and thereby silenced in effect.
  8. BryanHoward

    BryanHoward Keep your hands where I can see them

    I would rather a conversation gets going in the mainstream than none at all. Get in the conversation I say. So they quote the wrong sources - tell them the right sources!

    At least it's being discussed. Articles like this are not the problem, we need to encourage discussion not reprimand them for failing to find and understand the few studies out there. There are a small number of spokespeople for this addiction - it's up to them and us to constantly refer to the science and encourage the journalists to dig a little deeper.

    The article DOES make reference to the Cambridge study: "In one study, University of Cambridge researchers performed brain scans on 19 men watching porn, and the same reward centres of the brain were activated as when addicts see their drug of choice."

    They link it to a broader article on it too.
  9. Loleekins

    Loleekins Nemo repente fuit turpissimus

    I agree, it is the format. This particular piece doesn't seem to have the pro agenda push I have seen in other pieces, it just seems lazy. The problem is the perpetual attitude that the public has now about lazy. It's acceptable. It's better than nothing. We accept half-assed as okay. Tell us half the story and we buy it. Give us the spun version and we process it as unbiased. Media has become nothing but superficial and entertainment. Actual news, science, and information seems to be dying a rapid death.

    I'm particularly sensitive to this more and more as time goes by. I'm a Gen X'er, not a Millenial. The disappearance of information and the doling out of opinion in its place is scary.
  10. Zaphod

    Zaphod Guest

    Yeah, i think the discussion is still too stuck on the addiction part. Most people, as soon as they hear or read "porn ADDICTION", their skepticism greatly increases, especially when even the science still can't decide what should or shouldn't be considered an addiction.
    I think the first step to really get the ball rolling, is for the collective consciousness to realize that there may be a problem going on, that it is not being taken care of and that something needs to be done. Is it addiction? Is it neurological? Is it moral? Is it social? What's important is for people to realize that there is a problem. Let's find out what it is :)
  11. Gary Wilson

    Gary Wilson Active Member

    As you know, that's what good scientists do: they avoid black and white statements, and point to the evidence. But Prause adamantly claims that porn addiction does not exist. She campaigns against it. For example, her original twitter account (which was suspended), her slogan was:"Studying why people choose to engage in sexual behaviors without invoking addiction nonsense".

    On that same twitter account she called YBOP "nutters". Prause has also posted on twitter and her website that clients who are diagnosed with porn or sex addiction should report those therapists to their state boards. Prause has also falsely accused individual sex addiction therapists of "reparative therapy". Under a David Ley blog pots she named a psecific therapists and linked to his website. The irony was that the man was gay. (all the comments were later deleted by Psychology Today). I could go on and on with many more examples, including her threatening me with a lawsuit after I wrote a critique of her 2103 EEG study.

    Prause claims again and again that the concept of porn addiction has been debunked by her single EEG study. What other researcher would make such a claim based on their single study? The reality: 3 peer-reviewed analysis say it actually found greater porn uses correlating with habituation or desensitization. - http://www.yourbrainonporn.com/modulation-late-positive-potentials-sexual-images-problem-users-and-controls-inconsistent-porn

    Another disturbing pattern is that Prause titles do not accurately reflect the findings. Two examples:

    1) "Sexual desire, not hypersexuality, is related to neurophysiological responses elicited by sexual images (2013)"

    The headlines and the study's conclusion suggest that "hypersexuality" is understood as "high desire", yet the study reports that subjects with greater brain activation to porn had less desire for sex. So the "sexual desire" in the title and conclusion was actually LOWER sexual desire relating to greater cue reactivity to porn. Or to put another way - individuals with more brain activation and cravings for porn would rather masturbate to porn than have sex with a real person. For more - http://yourbrainonporn.com/sexual-desire-not-hypersexuality-related-neurophysiological-responses-elicited-sexual-images-2013

    2) "No Evidence of Emotion Dysregulation in “Hypersexuals” Reporting Their Emotions to a Sexual Film (2013)"

    As explained in the critique, the title hides the actual findings. In fact, "hypersexuals" had less emotional response when compared to controls. This is not surprising as many porn addicts report numbed feelings and emotions. Prause justified the title by saying she expected "greater emotional response", but provided no citation for her dubious "expectation." A more accurate title would have been: "Subjects who have difficulty controlling their porn use show less emotional response to sexual films". For more - http://yourbrainonporn.com/study-porn-users-report-narrower-emotional-range

    And yet it is Prause who always seems to be quoted (along with Ley) or cited in articles about porn addiction. Strong bias exists in the media.
  12. BryanHoward

    BryanHoward Keep your hands where I can see them

    It seems pretty clear that there is little room for Prause in today's conversation and you are probably right that it is as much to do with bias as it is with random superficial journalism.

    But this was never about the BBC getting to grips with the issue, lifting the lid, offering a scientific editorial - it's a low-brow review of a trending topic and frankly I am pleased that it is there. 10 years ago it would have been met with a snigger, the tone of this is one of concern and of a swelling of anecdotal evidence regardless of the position of the scientific community.

    The average consumer of p is just as likely to pay attention to this and initiate their own dialogue, than they would from a dry but comprehensive scientific study.

    Prause to me is Big Tobacco in the 80's - it doesn't really matter that they have the loudest voice in the room, the tide is turning.
  13. Loleekins

    Loleekins Nemo repente fuit turpissimus

    I hope you're right. The tide needs to turn. It took a long while for the tobacco message to get through. And it got through via constant science based pounding.

    I remember as a teen the Reagan initiated 'Just say no to drugs' campaign. It was a major flop. It didn't work because it came off as preachy and all fluff, no substance. The science was lacking. Nancy Reagan surrounded by children chorusing "just say no!" in tv ads was meaningless and useless. There was absolutely nothing there that spoke to my teen brain of the dangers. During the affluent 80's, my friends and I partook in ridiculous amounts of blow.
  14. Gary Wilson

    Gary Wilson Active Member

    I was sent 2 more articles mentioning Terry Crews and his so-called porn addiction. Guess the 2 "experts" who are quoted.

    Is it actually possible to be addicted to porn? (Trigger warning - woman in tiny bikini)

    Terry Crews May Have Had A Porn Problem, But That Doesn't Make It An Addiction
  15. Loleekins

    Loleekins Nemo repente fuit turpissimus

    It will continue until people start demanding actual information and stop their willingness to be fobbed off with puff opinion as factual.

    Walter Cronkite spins in his grave these days.

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