Computers have been rewiring the human brain for decades now, but in recent years it seems to be accelerating. From social networks to texting to online pornography, computer technology is rebuilding our brains from top to bottom, and having a massive impact on how we relate to our fellow primates. In a fascinating — and disturbing — new feature article, New York Magazine takes a close look at how online pornography is having a detrimental impact on the male libido, and thereby on the sex lives of countless people around the world. The following is an excerpt:
“Pornography? It’s a new synaptic pathway.” This is what John Mayer said in a candid interview with PLAYBOY. “You wake up in the morning, open a thumbnail page, and it leads to a Pandora’s box of visuals,” he continued. “There have probably been days when I saw 300 vaginas before I got out of bed.” Porn’s allure and ubiquity isn’t exactly titillating news. The question that still remains, however, is how this tsunami of porn is affecting the libido of the American male or, more selfishly, mine. First I came across a post on Sanjay Gupta’s blog by Ian Kerner, a sexuality counselor, who wrote that he noticed a distinct rise in the number of men approaching him with concerns about delayed ejaculation. Kerner went on to attribute much of the problem to a “rapid proliferation of Internet porn” which leads to “over-masturbation,” something I’m very familiar with. Then I read about a University of Kansas study that found that 25 percent of college-age men said they’d faked orgasms, which, I’ll admit, was oddly comforting to hear. But it wasn’t until I interviewed dozens of men with varying porn-watching habits (and a few very open-minded women) that some unexpected themes began to emerge. Porn is not only shaping men’s physical and emotional interest in sex on a very fundamental neurological level, but it’s also having a series of unexpected ripple effects—namely on women.
Written by Davy Rothbart, “He’s Just Not That Into Anyone” will make you think twice before you open that laptop of yours to get your next quick fix, and you can read the full story by visitng NYmag.com. In a similar regard, CNN’s Andrew Keen published a brilliant op-ed piece on how Facebook is slowly destroying the magic of the human experience by effectively wiping out the “mysteries and innocence” from the daily lives of its nearly one billion users (you can read the full piece by visiting CNN). Online pornography is having the same devastating effect on millions of sex lives worldwide as well. I think it’s time we all step back, take a deep breath, turn off our god damn computers, and start living life the way mother nature had intended. Anything less and we are blowing our precious wads.