2020 Altporn Awards: “These People Don’t Leave the House Anyway.”


Altporn Awards Fan Voting Closes Soon


Do you want to make your feelings about “Come on My Tattoo 11” to be heard, or do you prefer to be alone and voiceless? Balloting for the 2020 Altporn Awards ends at midnight CST, July 25, to be followed, at some distance, by a Hollywood awards ceremony “when it’s safe to go out.”

Just like the word “kinky,” the designation “alt” really depends on what the established standard is. So what is altporn and is it strange that MyFreeCams, the same organization that sponsors both the mainstream porn AVN and XBiz awards, is footing the bill for the 2020 Altporn Awards as well?

Second question first: No! MFC’s gentle, loving absorption of porn award shows might seem sinister at first, but isn’t porn itself sinister? 

MyFreeCams, founded in 2004 by Leonid Radvinsky, features more than 2,000 models on its homepage from around the globe, some of whom can make tens of thousands of dollars a week, and all of whom kick a little back to Leo’s company. You, the consumer, purchase tokens to interact with the Romanian object of your erection. There are no membership fees and no recurring charges. Recurring charges are a stain on adult industry credibility. In addition to models logging in from shtetls, tents, and 19th-century tenements, most of your favorite porn stars have MyFreeCams accounts, in addition to OnlyFans accounts, which Radvinsky also owns.

MFC screenshot from 10:30 a.m. PST July 23, 2020

The consolidation of the porn industry, which began with the family of companies mostly identified as the hydra Pornhub, created a situation in which studios, ravaged by piracy, sold out to a conglomerate that was facillitating the piracy. Performers, upon whose languidly arching and glazed backs the industry depends, had to work somewhere, so did it really matter for whom? 

Plus, with the accessibility of camming, now porn performers can slum for adult productions but make their real money, from home, on sites like MyFreeCams and OnlyFans. Their earning potential is limited only by their hustle and hotness, and the $800 scene they made for RealityKings qualifies them as a porn star and ups their cred on MyFreeCams or OnlyFans.

Arguably, the consolidation of the porn industry into a realm of oligarchs making millions from independent contractors making thousands gives performers more agency and financial security than they ever had. But what of the middle man making art? ART? A few days ago I posted a press release in which a porn director started a sentence with “As a filmmaker…” So as long as people still get to say things like that, they’ll be fine. Money is a distraction to the creative class.

First question: While the altporn of the early part of this century focused on tattoos, a DIY aesthetic that incorporated indie bands and skate culture and goth clubs, today’s altporn innovations include Chatroom Naming Standards (some of my favorite altporn names are Tweetneyy, PieAllTheTime, and Xandria_666. I always knew my mother was angry with me when she used my middle name. “Gram TIBERIUS Ponante,” she’d say, “stop running those password-stealing sites and spoofing amazon emails and take out the trash!” I wonder if Xandria’s mom was all like Xandria UNDERSCORE 666! Wash your damn neck!”) and anime iconography. I think the overarching aesthetic of altporn in 2020 is “Women Prone to Depression Who Are Better At Videogames Than You,” which is as hot as it sounds.

AltPorn.net was founded in 2003 and, like many sites that have been around for a long time but have adapted and glammed up (unlike mine), still has vestiges of its old self in interesting places. One of my favorite pages is its List of Dead Sites

Previously on porn Valley Observed: “you’Re nOT One Of us”: A Steveporn Odyssey (a snapshot of a time when things like this could be incendiary)

About Gram the Man 4399 Articles
Gram Ponante is America's Beloved Porn Journalist

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