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Glitch Porn Makes Being Naked on the Internet Interesting Again

Not everything needs to be in high definition.

by Louise Matsakis
Jun 22 2017, 10:00am

Bild: Shutterstock Remix by Louise Matsakis

I click on a Reddit post and squint as the link loads. The silhouette of a woman appears, in grainy black and white. Just as the camera pans over her bare breasts, the gif glitches and replays from the beginning.

At first I think something's wrong with my laptop, but then I realize I've just found an example of glitch porn, a type of erotica that combines internet art borrowed from genres like vaporwave with hardcore porn. It's a subsection of glitch art, which is itself a distinct category.

The final compositions feel both nostalgic and from the future at the same time. You might be viewing an old, corrupted VHS porno from the 90s, or some sort of sexual alien transmission.

"This reminds me of trying to watch those porn channels that we didn't get on cable," wrote one Reddit commenter.

For those who create it, glitch porn is about bringing something new to sexual content on the internet. "In today's world it's so easy to see nudity and sex. It takes minimal effort to see 100s/1000s of women naked, so maybe seeing them in a different way breathes new life into them," Reddit user hipnosister, the founder and moderator of r/NSFWGlitchArt said over DM.

While some of the content is sexually explicit, many images featured on r/NSFWGlitchArt are more subtle. "I wanted to create a community for something more reserved," hipnosister explained.

If you're looking for the really hardcore stuff, you don't have to go far. Other subreddits, like r/glitch_porn, offer content that more closely resembles traditional porn, as do Tumblr blogs like this one.

Some glitch artists, like Reddit user Altered_Data have even taken to uploading their work to actual porn sites, like Xtube. "I wanted to hack and remix the porn online visual presence and the porn industry aesthetic," they told me.

Regardless of how risqué the images are, all glitch porn shares one thing in common: It explores the way sexuality is depicted on the internet.

Instead of merely representing sex, glitch porn lets the technology we use to view explicit content become part of the images themselves.

When you're looking at a distorted naked torso, or a pixelated couple embracing, it's impossible to forget you're viewing them on a screen. You can't fantasize the subjects are there in front of you, which is what so much of porn is usually about.

Instead, you're forced to remember that your computer or phone is part of the equation, which is exactly what glitch porn artists want.

"I was very much interested in the way that porn gets consumed online," Alterted_Data told me. "We never consumed porn this way before, infinite porn scrolling and reading."

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Tagged:
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