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By Gudrun Schultz

  EDMONTON, Alberta, February 27, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) – More than one-third of young teenage boys aged 13-14 report viewing pornographic DVDs or videos “too many times to count”, a new study from the University of Alberta found, with boys living in rural areas the most likely to access porn.

  The survey questioned 429 students aged 13 to14, from 17 schools in both urban and rural regions across Alberta. The students were asked to respond anonymously about their exposure to pornographic material: if, how and when they had encountered it, and what form of media it was in.

  Ninety percent of boys questioned said they had accessed pornographic material at least once, along with 70 percent of girls. Almost three quarters of the young teens (74 percent) said they had viewed sexually explicit material on the Internet. Fifty-seven percent said they had watched it on a porn TV channel, and 41 percent reported seeing it on video or DVD.

“If you’re 13 and you can’t put a number on the times [you’ve viewed porn], that’s a little frightening,” lead researcher Sonya Thompson told the Canadian Press. “I hope parents think about their own values around this stuff and start talking to their kids.”

  While most teenagers said their parents were concerned about pornographic material, the majority said there was very little supervision or discussion about viewing habits, and few instances of parents utilizing media blocking systems to prevent access to porn. Only 13 percent of the teens said their parents had access blocks in place on the home computer or TV.

  The media environment in homes makes accessing pornography easy for teens, Thompson said in a University of Alberta press release.

“We don’t know how we are changing sexual behaviors, attitudes, values and beliefs by enabling this kind of exposure and not talking with kids about it in any meaningful way.”

  Almost 60 percent of the young teens said there were no rules about what type of movies they were allowed to watch in the home. Twenty percent of the students said they had accessed pornography at a friend’s house. 

  Nearly half the boys from rural regions said they had viewed pornographic videos or DVDs at least once, compared to children from urban areas who reported a one-in-three rate of exposure to pornographic videos.

  Thompson told the Canadian Press that while a fascination with pornographic pictures isn’t new among teenage boys, the ease with which the teens can access sexually explicit video images—increasingly depicting extreme and risky acts—is taking the problem to a whole new level.

“I think it’s different than…looking at a static picture in a porn magazine,” Thompson said. “I think it’s setting up a disconnect between boys and girls. I wonder how that affects boys’ expectations.”

“There’s this whole subculture of kids and porn. We’re not addressing its effects.”

  Thompson, who was formerly a sex education instructor, called for more parental monitoring of the media activities of their teens and better communication about the issue.

“It indicates there is plenty of room for better parenting around pornography use. Parents need to improve dialogue with their children and their own awareness level. They have to be educated enough to be the ones setting the boundaries in the house,” Thompson said.

“Families using media together is no longer the norm, so parents need to know what their kids have access to in their alone time.”

  The survey is considered accurate to within one percentage point, +/-.

  See related LifeSiteNews coverage:

  Large Increase in Porn DVD Sales Indicates Growing Pornography Addiction
  https://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2005/dec/05121603.html

  STUDY PROVES “PORNOGRAPHY IS HARMFUL”
  https://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2002/mar/02031203.html

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