Effect of Pornography Exposure on Junior High School Teenagers of Pontianak in 2008 (2010)

Translated from Malaysian

Hubs-Asia 9, no. 2 (2010).

Euis Supriati, Sandra Fikawati


Adolescent is a vulnerable group in reproductive health area. This period is marked by strong desire to try and explore new things. Pornography is a medium which can influence adolescent toward high risk sexual behaviour. The exposure to pornographic materials is a serious problem among adolescent since it could have negative impacts such as unwanted pregnancy, unsafe abortion, sexually transmitted diseases and HIV-AIDS. This cross-sectional study was conducted to understand various types of pornographic exposures, effects of pornographic exposure, and factors influence the effect.

Study was conducted at five state junior high schools in Pontianak District in 2008 with 395 respondents from December 2007 to January 2008. The result shows that 83.3% adolescence has exposed to pornography and 79.5% of them had experienced the effects of pornographic exposure.

19.8% respondent who experienced the effects of pornography was in the addiction stage. 69.2% respondent of those in addiction stage was in escalation stage. 61.1%respondent of escalation stage was in desensitization stage, and 31.8% respondent of desensitization was in act-out stage. Multivariate analysis shows that there were four variables that have significant relationship to the effect of pornographic exposure, that is gender (male), grade at school (third), length of exposure (recent) and frequency of exposure (often).

The analysis also shown that the frequency of pornography (often) is the most dominant factor related to the effect of pornographic exposure among adolescence with Odds Ratio of 5.02 (95% CI: 1.39-18.09). It is suggested to provide information in a professional way and targeted to the right group; to improve preventive efforts through collaboration within school, and to study further as to align positively those in the act-out stage.

Keywords: adolescence, effect of exposure, pornography


Data Analysis and Interpretation This study found as many as 83.3% of adolescents SMPN in Pontianak City has been exposed with pornography. From adolescents SMPN exposed to pornography as many as 79.5% of them have experienced effects of exposure to pornography. Appropriate Social Learning Theory can be explained that pornography can affect teenage and adolescent sexual desire can learn about the sexuality of the observations illustrated by various media (Schramm & Roberts, 1971). By detailed, adolescents will observe the mechanisms of behavior sexually, in addition teens are also learning about the context in which these behaviors occur motivation and intent behind the interaction as well as the consequences for those who interact within such behavior. Messages are hidden in the media pornography may be strong when adolescents  become interested, portrayed with power, treated with some alternative way of action or presents identifiable characters as a teenager.

Pornography aims to stimulate sexual desire person, then the effect that occurs is behavioral behavior which leads to increased stimulation sexual on the adolescent itself. It is in sync with Theory of Stimulus according to Zillmann (1982), in Thornburgh and Herbert (2002) are primarily focused on the immediate effect, where pornography can produce physiological and emotional stimulation (activation of the system nerves as opposed to sexual stimulation), and increased levels of stimulation will likely produce some form of behavior. Other than that print media such as magazines, books, stencils contains the usual stimulating images “Pornography” or often also called Sexually Explicit Materials (SEM), can lead to imagination and it turns out the imagination is twice more stimulating of the than the usual drawing (Teenage Stories Indonesia,

The effect of exposure to pornography is a form of outcome the end of the communication to be conveyed by pornographic messages. Changes in attitude, behavior, and Teen opinion about pornography is a form effects that occur related to a personal opinion teenagers against pornography. According to Modeling Theories someone will automatically empathize with the feelings of the people he observes and will imitate his behavior (Widjaja, 2000). Effect of exposure to pornography not just the knowledge of pornography alone but that happens also to affective aspects and even the tendency to behave. Pornography can affect teens to do shape behavior, consciously or unconsciously, has changing perceptions and even the behavior of adolescent life daily especially in terms of sexuality The results of this study show that as many as 52 (19.78%) of junior high school students in Pontianak City has experienced the effects of exposure to pornography is on stage addiction. Cline (1986) mentions that once someone likes pornographic material then he will addictive and will try even want always get the material. Pornographic material is visible provide a force of sexual stimulation or aphrodisiac effects (substances that stimulate lust), followed by the release of lust/sex, more often through masturbation. Social learning theory states that the impact on the observer that occurs is the response facilitation, where a desired behavior will be has increased in frequency (Bandura, 1971 in Thornburgh and Herbert, 2002).

The next change in attitude or behavior is escalation. The results showed 36 people (69.2%) of 52 adolescents who are addicted to the stage escalation / increased needs. After all this time consume pornography, adolescents who are hooked will experienced an increase in the need for sex material which is heavier, more explicit, more sensational and more distorted than previously consumed. This increase in demand is not in terms of quantity but especially the quality of which is increasingly explicit, then it is will be more satisfied. If before he had enough satisfied watching the image of a woman naked, then want to see a movie that contains a sex scene. Once saturated, he wants to see that sex scene different ones that are sometimes more wild and distorted than which he had seen. Also in accordance with the results study Zillman & Bryant (1982, in Thornburgh & Herbert, 2002) which states that when someone is exposed to repeated pornography, they are will show a tendency to have distorted perceptions of sexuality also occur increased need for more pornographic types hard and distorted.

The next stage of desensitization has been experienced by 22 people (61.11%) teenagers from 36 people who experiencing stage escalation. At this stage, sex material which was taboo, immoral and degrading/humiliating human dignity, gradually considered to be something that is considered normal which means the longer it becomes insensitive again.

In this study there were 67% of junior high school adolescents who have a casual response to behavior scenes of people dating, 30% against the soap opera shows kissing scenes in public places, 14% against rape film scene, there are even 12% SMPN teenagers who think that the scene pictures sex with small children as a matter of course. This indicates that pornography has circulating freely has decreased perception of junior high school adolescent in Pontianak norms that exist. This condition is supported by the results study Zillman & Bryant (1982, in Thornburgh & Herbert, 2002) which states that when someone is repeatedly exposed to pornography, they are will show an increase in insensitivity against women, tend to assume rape as a minor crime, tend to have perceptions which deviates from sexuality and tend to be lose confidence in the institution of marriage.

The results of this study further found from 22 people in the desensitization stage exist as many as 7 people (31.8%) are in actout stage. At this stage there is a tendency to engage in sexual behavior such as pornography he has been watching for real life. Junior high school teenagers in the early teens stage experienced a considerable sex drive. Sexual impulse is every basic need individuals, in adolescence with development growth hormones, self-seeking phases, as well as a sense of high curiosity makes teenagers making pornography a medium to fulfill his sexual needs. Exposure to pornography triggers teenagers to perform such sex drive in real conditions.

The magnitude of the effects of exposure to pornography that occurred influenced by various factors. Based on the analysis bivariate (chi square) obtained the factors that related to the effects of exposure are sex, class, exposure time, exposure frequency and type media. Based on multivariate analysis results obtained that the dominant factors affect the effect exposure to pornography is gender, class, time exposure, and frequency of exposure. In this research it appears that teenage boys are exposed to pornography risk of 1.98 times (95% CI: 1.08-3.63) compared with teenage girls. Differences in the effects of exposure which occurs in adolescents SMPN men and this woman is due to the difference sexual arousal that leads to an increase libido is happening. Libido or lust is desire for the opposite sex body with the ultimate goal having sex. The libido center is located at cerebral cortex, at the time of the onset of this libido exists a real difference between men and women. In men more easily aroused and faster orgasm when there is stimulation, both physical stimulation as well as psychic stimulation, while in women libido is slower in appearance (Widjaja, 2000). So also according to biological theories that try to explain that aggressive behavior is determined by a particular process which occurs in the brain and central nervous system. Hormone men (testosterone) are believed to be carriers of trait aggressive where in men there are more testosterone (Widjaja, 2000). Most of it sex begins with the aggressiveness of adolescents man and then his teenage son determine to what extent the aggressiveness of the man can be met. Hormonal conditions cause adolescents especially teenage boys become more sensitive to sexual stimulants either in the form of visual, touch or audio visual as with reading a romantic reading or see a romantic image, see the tool sex of the opposite sex that will encourage the emergence sexual behavior.

The results of further research indicate that adolescents third grade SMPN exposed to pornography at risk 2.4 times (95% CI: 1.26-4,81) experienced exposure effects pornography than first-graders. This matter according to the theory that states that in times adolescent when biologically reviewed sex hormones ie androgens and progesterone will increase, starting at the beginning of adolescence ie age 11,12,13 years and will continue to increase rapidly on age 14 years to age 18-19 years (Wiknjsastro, et al., 1999). Human sexual behavior related to the function of the hormonal activity. This hormone plays a very important role in triggering the occurrence of a chain reaction of other body hormones and ultimately breeds certain related behaviors with sexual stimulation. The existence of different levels hormonal in the pre-teen body is possible the occurrence of different effects of exposure to pornography though not the only one because of that as well can be related to the cultural aspects of society local.

The results also show that the newer time of exposure to pornography is getting bigger opportunities for the effects of exposure to pornography. Teenagers which has less pornographic exposure than the last three months at risk of 3.1 times (95% CI: 1.61-5.98) experience the effects of exposure compared to that of teenagers exposed to pornography for more than three months. This condition caused by something new and interesting attention will be easier to go inside a person’s attention span and will affect the process of a person’s memory storage mechanism (Notoatmodjo, 2003). Also in this study found that the more often adolescents are exposed pornography the greater the effects of exposure that occur.

In this study the frequency of exposure to pornography is the most dominant factor affect the effects of exposure to pornography. The teenagers has frequent frequency of exposure to pornography (more or equal to once a week) at risk 5.0 times (95% CI: 1.39-18.09) experienced exposure effects compared with adolescents whose frequency of exposure rarely (less than once a month). This condition is appropriate with the theory of perceptions being stated that repetition is one factors that cause a stimulus to enter our attention span. Pornography for teenagers is something new and very interesting attention. More interesting pornographic media information more repetition of sexuality information that happened. It also forms the effect of exposure most commonly experienced by adolescents in this study is addiction (addiction). Someone addicted of course with regard to the rise especially in terms of number or frequency of exposure. If someone too often gets exposure to pornography, then he will quickly aroused to do concrete actions. In everyday language it can be said that one’s resilience will be “Broken” if treated continuously pornography (Sarwono, 1999). When a person consumes MMSM (Content Highlighting Sex in the Media) occasionally, the impact will not be too great, which will the problem is when people are driven to continuously consume MMSM, which will increase the drive to channel desire the sex becomes big (Young Stories Indonesia, 2001).

The result of bivariate analysis (chi square) shows that adolescents SMPN exposed to pornography through the media print and electronic risk 4.21 times greater for experience the effects of exposure to pornography compared junior high school adolescents exposed to pornography only through print media only. Mass media (electronic media or print media) have the ability to spread the message to many people in various places and become a source of power so used various parties to make use of it (Rivers & Jensen, 2003).


Wibowo (2004) stated that the mass media electronics and print media play a role not small in teenage sexual fantasies, because this information in addition to broaden the horizons and knowledge also carries the values ​​of the country of origin information. Rachmat (1995) also stated that print media such as magazines, books, stencils which contains conventional stimulating images called “pornography”, or often also called SEM (Sexually Explicit Materials), may elicit imagination and it turns out the imagination is twice more stimulating than the usual picture. Media pornography or SEM or erotica, deep erotic ingredients television, movies, magazines, books that stimulate passion sexual, undermine moral values, encourage sex-crazy people or promoting rape (Tan, 1981 in Bungin, 2001).

In accordance with the Social Learning Theory, Bandura (1971 in Tornburg & Lin, 2002) states that teens can learn about the sexuality of observation described by the media. Hidden messages in a media that stimulates lust will become strong when participants become interested, described as thing that is full of strength, presented with several alternatives path of action or of presenting a character identifies as a teenager.

The presence of communication media such as cell phones which almost everyone has, including teenagers, at side giving also give advantages
negative impact. Mobile phones can be an event exchange information by sending each other SMS / MMS along with pornographic images that are not feasible watched. Another development is through the internet which has been so widely and freely accessible to teenagers.  It makes it easier for teens to get exposure to pornography in an easy, inexpensive and way
privacy. Conversely very difficult for parents to keep his teenager exposed with pornography. In the BKKBN report (2004), results research of Our Foundation and Buah Hati (2007) mentioned that 80% of children aged 9-12 years in Jabodetabek area has accessed the material pornography via the internet. In addition, the results of the study PKBI (2007) in five cities namely Kupang, Palembang, Singkawang, Cirebon and Tasikmalaya in 2001 showed 61.64% of respondents never use media pornography. Of these, as many 70.59% use the film (VCD), but it also exists which uses magazines, photos and the internet.


A total of 83.3% of junior high school adolescents in Pontianak City have exposed to pornography, and from being exposed as many as 79.5% experience the effects of exposure to pornography. Teenagers who experience the effects of exposure to pornography as much as 19.8% were in the addiction stage, from adolescents the 69.2% addiction is at the escalation stage, from which escalation of 61.1% is at the desensitization stage, and from the 31.8% desensitization was at the stage of act out. Dominant factors that affect the effect of exposure pornography in junior high school in Pontianak is gender (male), class (three), time of exposure (new) and frequency of exposure (often). Frequency exposure (often) is the most d factor.

Suggestion. Should the school improve providing targeted, targeted information on male learners, regardless of who women, on reproductive health in particular risky sexual behavior in adolescents. This information should be delivered in a proper way and professional. The reproduction health program to be more many touched on prevention efforts and carried out through collaboration at the school level. For example through giving information regularly to students about reproductive health issues, and improves the parent’s understanding of the magnitude of the impact media pornography on health issues reproduction of teenagers despite the progress of information technology can not be stopped. Need more research so that teenagers who have been exposed can still “Acting out” in a healthy / no risk, for example by encouraging masturbation as a channeling not risky.