Is this Pornography?

As a hypothetical situation:
Suppose I made a video of an activity that is not in and of itself sexual, but can be considered so by fetishist. Such as a short skirt (everthing covered)/high heel fashion show. Is any of this legally porn?

  1. If the vidoe shows only clothed models acting seductive in certain outfits? Does it make a difference how it is presented/sold/advertised?

1.a.If the models were underage? If they modeled without expresing seductiveness?

  1. If one of the models got turned on and “pleasured herself” without showing any genitalia, i.e. by reaching inside her skirt through the waist band? I think it would be porn but I’m not sure.

  2. If some of the models were underage? Not doing anything sexual, but packaged as to illicit lust, i.e. innocent shots of 15-17 year olds modeling fashions, then jump cut to a different scene with a twenty year old who models, then does explicit things which are obviously pornographic in nature. I know this would be porn, but would it be child porn?

I am interested in U.S. federal laws, if anybody knows. I am not looking to make child porn, but I am wondering about how the porn regulations would apply and if some of this would break the child porn laws.

Pornography is in the eyes of the beholder–er something.

Infortunatly i can not fine cite but…

I remember a case a few years ago where a mother was takign photo’s of her son … all fully clothed, but the images suggested (to someone with power) eroticism. Although it wasnot deemed Pornographic, it was deemed lewd, demeaning and exploitive of the child.

I think she ended up losing her son because of it.

sorry no cite.

One U.S. legal definition online.

So, if community standards dictated that a video of a fully clothed 13-year-old girl sitting quietly reading a copy of Jane Eyre was frighteningly kinky, then it would be porn.

If community standards dictated that a video of a naked 13-year-old girl pleasuring herself with a banana was perfectly normal behavior, it would not be porn.

Well, I’ve met a few 14 year old girls that… well… never mind.

Seriously, there are dozens and hundreds of web pages of girls that are alleged to be anywhere from 14-17 that shows them just wearing skimpy outfits… no genitalia, not even dark shadows of nipples in most cases.


This guy is running quite a few of those sites, so I imagine there’s some safeguards in place, legally.

“When correctly viewed
Everything is lewd.”

Defining what pornography is or is not is tricky at best. Non-answers like local standards' and average person’ get thrown around, which is legalese for `Let the damned judges decide for themselves.’ Truly, pr0n is in the eye of the beholder.

You can get an idea of what a certain court may rule by looking at the judge and relevant precedent (how previous cases about the same issues have been decided), but nothing is certain.

“I don’t know what pornography is, but I know it when I see it. So show me some!”
-A Doper

ok, thanks.
Does anyone know of a web-site or video that mixes non-newd glamor shots of young girls (like whats on with harder stuff? Possibly if there was a case brought against them, so there would be precedent?
At this point It boils down to not offending some judge, right?

Well, it does kinda sound like you’re interested in very young stuff, Bob, so you should just know that as a practical matter, very little in the U.S. gets prosecuted involving adults, but sexual imagery involving people under 18 DOES get prosecuted, and prosecuted with vigor. If you are interested in seeing how successfully you can skirt the law in this case, best go to a lawyer and not folks on a discussion board, as the penalties for this stuff can be very heavy.

If they are underage, it doesn’t matter if they have clothes on or not. Alot depends on intent. Like the picture on the cover of the Nirvana album of a naked boy seems to be within legal limits otherwise it wouldn’t have been sold in the US, right?

Does anyone else remember this? Several years ago in the US a guy was found guilty of possession of child porn even though all the images were from catalogs, magazines and those he took himself in public places. (It included underwear and swimwear ads, etc.) IIRC the fact that it was a collection was important in ruling that it was for salacious purposes.

I always wondered about this. I mean, it is a nude baby, no? I suspect that it’s simpy (a) deemed “art”, when the complaints come in, or (b) the picture was dummied up, or at least claimed to be.

Don’t forget that Blind Faith LP cover with the topless 14 year old.

I’m always surprised they got away with that.

Actually, I’m not really “interested” in “young stuff”. This really is an academic question on my part.
I am thinking of maybe doing some amature specialty fetish video. But I was talking to a cute waitress last night, and the thought slid across my mind, “she’d be great on video”. But she seems 17, so I wouldn’t video tape her, because I don’t want to go to jail. But it brought up some of the questions in the original post, and made me wonder.
I’m also wondering about porn as opposed to obscenity. * “Debbie Does Dallas”* is porn but usually not classified as obscene. It’s available for sale, but has special regulations etc. because it is porn. Does my orginal concept (clothed but titilating models) fall under these guidelines?
Thanks, BTW, ftg. Do you recall the guys name or anything, that seems a very relevant case. As mixing “innocent” pics with hardcore stuff would seem to give automatic salacious intent to the “innocent” ones.

Well, if that’s your concern, do like everyone who takes erotic photos of any kind for publication – demand proof of age and a model release and keep them on file. If she subsequently turns out to have been underage, it can keep you out of jail. If you DON’T do these things, you are very vulnerable to anyone who lies about her age. Don’t go on appearances alone. Traci Lords fooled a lot of people. (She lied about her age with fake IDs and so nobody went to jail for it, but it was still a mess for all concerned.)

[Minor hijack] Is it just me, or does ginger have some really big feet?

Her feet do seem oversized. Hey, you know what they say about women with big feet…:slight_smile: , no wait, that’s men with big feet, nevermind.

I asked a similar question about Tracie Lords a while back that nobody really was able to answer.

Basically, I had heard that while underage she performed in some fetish videos without nudity or any sexual activity. Would this be considered child porn? While it probably appeals to purient interests of the majority of viewers, by itself, there is nothing really objectionable as far as I can tell.

hehe actuall its much worse than that

tracy lords had been in the “adult film” busness for a few years already. Then in an interview she stated that it was her happy 18th bday…

everyone, was VERY VERY shocked and instinanously all of the works one of the top ‘starlets’ had done were all insanely ILLEGAL.

so by that same act (or is it many acts…) she became very famous and almost a household name.

-x out

Something that no one has touched on, is that the context is very relevant. Context can be just as damning - say for example you advertise your mainstream, legal porn site with clothed-but-under-aged models in the free area: sure, inside you do not have naked under-18’s, but you are IMPLYING that you do, and that’s risky (note, while there are some, there are not a lot of cases where a useful precedent has been set, so most ppl in the biz talk of “risk”, not “law”, as the law is fuzzy, as cited above).

The same way dressing up a 18 year old model as a 13 year old girl is risky, implying that she is younger than she is.

You are a little safer dressing a 18 (or, 17) year old model as an older person, but if she is being “sexualised” (here in Australian law, this is a key word) even de-facto style by the context, AND she is 17, you are at risk.

I am in The Biz, and these are risks I would not take (even after having consulted with a lawyer, and getting his “ok”). I’d recommend you formulate a plan of what you are proposing, think about the context it’ll be presented in (who will sell these videos for you, for example? Will they be on shelves beside “cum soaked sluts # 37”?), and as someone else said, go see a lawyer.

I for one would be interested to hear how you get on.