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Why Do People Watch Pornography?

Why do people watch pornography? The motivational basis of pornography useFull Article Title: Why Do People Watch Pornography? The Motivational Basis of Pornography Use

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Although pornography viewing is widespread among Internet users, no scales for measuring pornography use motivations (PUM) have been developed and psychometrically tested for use in general populations. The present work aimed to construct a measure that could reliably assess a wide range of PUM in nonspecific populations. Self-report data of 3 separate samples (N₁ = 772 [51% women], N₂ = 792 [6% women], N₃ = 1,082 [50% women]) were collected and analyzed using confirmatory factor analysis, measurement invariance testing, and structural equation modeling (SEM). The most common PUM were identified based on a literature review and qualitative analysis (N₁): sexual pleasure, sexual curiosity, emotional distraction or suppression, stress reduction, fantasy, boredom avoidance, lack of sexual satisfaction, and self-exploration. Items were constructed, and confirmatory factor analyses (N₂ and N₃) yielded strong psychometric properties. Further corroborating the structural validity of the Pornography Use Motivations Scale (PUMS), gender-based measurement invariance was tested, and associations of the frequency of pornography use (FPU), problematic pornography use (PPU), and PUM were examined. Men—compared to women—demonstrated higher scores on all motivations except for sexual curiosity and self-exploration. Based on the results of SEM, we found that sexual pleasure, boredom avoidance, and stress reduction motivations showed positive, weak-to-moderate associations with FPU. Motivations relating to stress reduction, emotional distraction or suppression, boredom avoidance, fantasy, and sexual pleasure had positive, weak-to-moderate associations with PPU. The PUMS is a reliable scale to assess the most common PUM in general populations.


    Bőthe B, Tóth-Király I, Bella, N., Potenza, M. N., Demetrovics, Z., & Orosz, G. (2020). Why do people watch pornography? the motivational basis of pornography use. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors: Journal of the Society of Psychologists in Addictive Behaviors, 2020 Jul 30.

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