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By Rhizome

The astounding statistic that a quarter of all search engine requests are for porn bespeaks an appetite and industry well served by a digital media environment. But beyond the burgeoning commercial mainstream, or even altporn's 'Suicide Girl' spin-offs cashing-in on the web's infinite niche-marketing opportunities, a host of critical porn practices utilizing social software and indie media models have also emerged. These developments are the subject of the Institute of Network Cultures' conference, 'The Art and Politics of Netporn,' to be held at De Badcuyp, Amsterdam, September 30 - October 1. Artists, sex workers, and theorists will present works on an array of topics, ranging from 'Cybersex and Technologies of the Self' to 'My favorite Abu Ghraib Links.' Keynote speakers include Susanna Paasonen, Mark Dery, and Mikita Brottman, who will address the 'gut reactions' which attend the viewing of porn, the sexual grotesque, and phantom pedophilia, respectively. And if history is any indication, we can expect the open, moderated debate on censorship (focusing on the impact that Internet governance, information surveillance, and filtering technologies have on netporn activities) to produce some hot exchanges. - Johanna Fateman

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