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Cindy Gallop is Founder & CEO of IfWeRanTheWorld, a web meets world platform that turns good intentions into action, one microaction at a time, which launched in beta with a demo at TED 2010. She is also the founder of www.makelovenotporn.com, launched at TED 2009.
Cindy’s background is brand building, marketing and advertising. She started up the US office of ad agency Bartle Bogle Hegarty in New York in 1998 and in 2003 was named Advertising Woman of the Year. She acts as board advisor to a number of tech startups and consults for companies around the world, describing her consultancy approach as "I like to blow shit up. I am the Michael Bay of business."
She has a reputation as a highly compelling and inspirational speaker at conferences and events around the world on a variety of topics: her talk on ‘The Future of Advertising’ has been described on Twitter as "The most brilliant speech on the future of advertising ever – not the usual buzzword-laden bullshit." She published ‘Make Love Not Porn: Technology’s Hardcore Impact on Human Behavior’ as one of TED’s line of TEDBooks and is currently working on a book about her philosophy of life and business.
Depiction of erotic behaviour intended to cause sexual excitement. The word originally signified any work of art or literature depicting the life of prostitutes. Though pornography is clearly ancient in origin, its early history is obscure because it was customarily not thought worthy of transmission or preservation. Nevertheless, in the artwork of many historic societies, including ancient India, ancient Greece, and Rome, erotic imagery was commonplace and often appeared in religious contexts. The Art of Love, by Ovid, is a treatise on seduction and sensual arousal. The invention of printing led to the production of ambitious works of pornographic writing intended to entertain as well as to arouse. In 18th-century Europe, pornography became a vehicle for social and political protest through its depiction of the misdeeds of royalty and other aristocrats, as well as those of clerics, a traditional target. The development of photography and motion pictures in the 19th and 20th centuries contributed greatly to the proliferation of pornography, as did the advent of the Internet in the late 20th century. During the 20th century, restrictions on pornography were relaxed throughout much of Europe and North America, though regulations remained strict in Asia, the Middle East, and Africa. Child pornography is almost universally prohibited.
Thank you Cindy. You have said what so many parents believe.
I feel that the pornification of culture is detrimental to our children's sexual lives. Particularly young female sexual lives. A friend's 14 year old daughter dated an older teen. She developed a hair trigger gag reflex and mom found out that the boy was gagging her with his penis - a common hardcore porn act. Her daughter didn't want that. She didn't enjoy it - very few women do. But like letting a guy cum on your face (which most women hate as it is disrespectful and humiliating), young girls and boys think that it is normal. And so, young girls are not learning to embrace their sexuality by viewing images that show her getting pleasure the way most women do. I want my daughter to get off as much as any guy she is with. I don't want her to give a blow job unless he goes down on her too. Hardcore porn's male focus and the extremeness of many of its depictions unfortunately seem like the norm to the younger generation. As someone said ... the battle of the sexes was over as soon as women started taking pole dancing classes for exercise.
This talk is brilliant. Simply brilliant. It would behoove any parent to watch this talk and consider how to make the child's relationship to sexuality a healthy one.
Plus, let's be honest here, a lot of people are pretty terrible at making love, and have no idea they are doing it wrong.
@polesch I know - you'd think, wouldn't you? Unfortunately,if you go to the 'About' page of www.makelovenotporn.com and read the email extracts there from only a few of the emails I receive literally every single day, from young and old, male and female, all around the world, you'll see why, sadly, I am not 'nuts', and why MakeLoveNotPorn is very much needed. Many thanks.
Cindy, I want to thank you for both the talk and with your very calm, funny, and enlightened responses to those who have been throwing misogyny, religious dogma, and ageism at you in these comments. I salute your sex-positive, realist aplomb, and appreciate your bravery in weaving your personal experience into your talking points. The only way to reverse the depersonalization of sex we see in so much bad porn is to discuss it personally, which is clearly a difficult thing for most people to do. Kudos!
@mariatosupeingo Thank you so much for your feedback! There are indeed people making porn for women - if you email me at firstname.lastname@example.org I can recommend some - and I am also looking at taking MakeLoveNotPorn forwards in a way designed to make it more far-reaching and effective that will address what you would like to see..watch this space!
Hi Cindy, I'm writting this comment from Spain. I saw your TEDtalk and both of your websites and I think you are doing a great job. Based on my personal experience, in the past I changed my behaviour because of what men expected from me in bed 'cause of porn images. I didn't enjoy sex and I also thought I had a huge mental of body problem cause I didn't fit with this expectations.
It's time for women to speak and ask by themselves in sex subjects; and it's time to make porn for females too. I wonder if there's someone thinking about it.
Congratulations for your incredibly work.
Keep on it!
@thenewuswoman Actually, I wasn't out to impress you - or anyone else I completely agree with you on the fact that girls and women should feel able to speak up about what they do and don't like sexually. I would just clarify that MakeLoveNotPorn is a gender-equal proposition. I have many conversations with both young women and men alike about how pornwatching has changed female sexual behavior. Twenty-something men talk to me about how their girlfriends are putting on performances in bed, because they've seen it in porn and think it's what the men want, but the men are unhappy about how that gets in the way of making a real connection. (If you go to the 'About' page of the website you will see extracts from a number of the emails that I receive every single day about MakeLoveNotPorn from male and female, young and old, from all around the world.) Unfortunately, no matter what parents try and do and no matter what blocks you put on your computer, kids will see this elsewhere (again, the email extracts on the site will give you a sense of how this happens). No one sets out to 'fill their minds with filth'; all of us are sexual beings and learning about our sexuality all the time. All I want to do with MakeLoveNotPorn is help inspire more open, healthy dialogue around the area of sex and porn, so that people can bring a healthy real-world mindset to the watching of what is artificial and unreal entertainment. Many thanks for taking the time to comment.