What in the world is COVID-19 porn?

When I first heard that there was a new genre of pornography gaining popularity, I wasn’t exactly too interested. I mean, those in the porn industry have long been known to be… very creative with their ideas (or so I’ve heard). But now, with the global health crisis that is the COVID-19 outbreak creating panic among the masses, we’re seeing an altogether more disturbing genre of content gaining traction among audiences.

Coronavirus porn (or COVID-19 porn, depending on your search terms) is real. According to a report from Vice, filmmakers in the porn industry have been releasing coronavirus-themed movies/videos—with varying degrees of detail and complexity. The videos are gaining popularity on popular porn sites—which I won’t name here—with a certain video titled “Bodycam Footage (CDC Agent) Investigates Deserted Wuhan” depicting a healthcare worker investigates the Wuhan region, which is accurately deserted, before… well, you get the gist of it. “TSA Agent Detains Woman Suspected of Coronavirus” is another example of the creative minds in the industry.

Meanwhile, the number of videos with “coronavirus” within their titles has drastically increased, with many reportedly featuring Asian actors—expectedly, some racial sentiments are present. Still, porn is mostly an unregulated industry, which is the main reason that we’re even seeing this particular genre of content making headlines (like this one!).

I haven’t had a great amount of time to go through the growing list of these coronavirus porn productions, but I’m guessing that most, if not all, of these pornos have actors pretending to be in quarantine, or investigating quarantined areas. I seriously doubt that these folks are actually infected—although the boredom from sitting around in quarantine might be a factor in these videos, I suppose.

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The outbreak of COVID-19, for some context, is a global health crisis. The WHO has already declared it as a global health crisis, and there are almost 100,000 confirmed cases across 85 countries. 3,348 deaths have been reported as of 8am this morning, which means the coronavirus has a fatality rate of 3.42%. In Malaysia, we’ve seen 55 cases, with 22 making recoveries (0 deaths).

Consequently, it certainly makes sense that we’re seeing a rise in popularity of coronavirus-themed porn. Porn, in itself, is the type of content that can be fairly repetitive (again, so I’ve heard)—which means that these filmmakers usually try to leverage off whatever is relevant/current to spice things up. And right now, there is no hotter topic than the coronavirus.

But it’s not just a way to get more video hits, apparently. Spicy x Rice, the couple that created the “Deserted Wuhan” video, explained to Vice that the new genre of porn is about “fear and mystery”, elements that help viewers to “come alive”. Apparently, some videos also have an educational element to them: stuff about safe sex, proper mask usage, and how to combat the spreading of COVID-19. According to Spicy:

“I think it’s attractive to people because it can help lighten the mood on a serious subject.”

Some sites are even offering free premium accounts—where you get exclusive access to videos, etc.—to users from regions that have been affected by the outbreak. It’s almost charitable.

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Still, I don’t know how I feel about this new genre of porn. I haven’t actually watched many of the videos—it’s really not the sort of content that you watch in the office—but it’s proof that regardless of the severity of the situation, regardless of how something may have zero sexual elements to it—porn will always find a way.

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