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The Ethics of Gazing: The Politics of Online Pornography

The Ethics of Gazing: The Politics of Online Pornography
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Author(s): Y. Ibrahim (University of Brighton, UK)
Copyright: 2009
Pages: 17
Source title: Handbook of Research on Technoethics
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Rocci Luppicini (University of Ottawa, Canada) and Rebecca Adell (University of Ottawa, Canada)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-022-6.ch033


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This chapter situates the current debates on pornography in the virtual realm and its ethical and legal implications for users and researchers. It examines the ethics of gaze and politics of looking and how these acts of consumption can pose new moral and ethical dilemmas for societies and communities. Debates on online pornography have to integrate and reconcile dialectical elements and values such as aesthetics, privacy, rights, taboos, private pleasures and community standards while acknowledging the intrinsic features which define the Internet as a liminal space between the private and public and between individual consumption and infringement of societal norms. Beyond the legal and ethical paradigm, the chapter explores the issues of empowerment associated with online pornography as well as the epistemological and ontological problems which can face researchers.

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