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As Bareback Gay Porn Studios Dominate, A Battle Brews In California

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Long time gay porn blogger Zachary Sire — a national treasure who pays close attention to sexual health, legal issues and hypocrisy in the porn industry — recently updated his blog’s ongoing count of the number of pro-bareback and condom-only gay porn studios (NSFW). His official count is 30 bareback studios to just 8 condom-only studios, a mere 2 bareback studios away from a four-to-one ratio.

This isn’t just a bit of trivia, especially when you consider that barely a decade ago, bareback studios were in the minority and porn moguls like Islamophobe Michael Lucas of Lucas Entertainment strongly opposed bareback videos on the basis of “safety”. Now, it seems that the gay and bi male fantasy of sex without barriers has become the dominant marketplace reality, thanks largely to anti-retroviral treatments and Pre-exposure Prophylactics (PreP) which suppress HIV viral loads and make bareback sex nearly incapable of transmitting HIV .

But as porn becomes increasingly condomless, anti-PreP forces — best personified by the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) president Michael Weinstein — are fighting back. Weinstein and the AHF actually submitted a law in California that would ban the production of bareback porn statewide.

According to the Los Angeles Times:

“In addition to requiring actors to wear condoms when performing sex acts on camera, the initiative would require adult film producers to pay for vaccinations and testing for sexually transmitted diseases.”

The Centers for Disease Control have actually suggested the same thing, encouraging porn studios to use HIV testing, anti-retroviral treatment, condoms and PrEP to avoid repeating a 2014 instance of a HIV-positive bareback gay porn unknowingly passing on the virus to one of his co-stars (NSFW).

However, the proposed California law is not a suggestion; it would fine any porn producers to who dare stick a raw peen into a hungry b-hole. And the law itself would undoubtedly face legal challenges too, both from free-speech advocates who see it as a Puritanical form of censorship and from porn studios who see it as an additional expense meant to stop something that rarely happens in the first place.

Some worry that the law would encourage the state’s $6 billion dollar porn industry to move elsewhere. Porn production in Los Angeles, for instance, dropped 90 percent after the city passed a similar law banning bareback porn shoots, though some industry watchdogs suspect that the shoots have actually moved underground rather than out of the state.

Though the public will vote on this law in November, San Francisco democrats have formally opposed it stating that it would allow unfair lawsuits against bareback porn stars. Sire also warns that the law is so vaguely written that it could punish any distributors or bloggers who promote raw flicks made in California, though it’s unclear whether the distributors and bloggers in question would have to reside in the state.