Experiences with prevention in the media

As Prostasia continues working to grow its impact under its new leadership, one area we’d like to explore more is the ways CSA and prevention are discussed in the media. As part of this, we’re working on a page summarizing our work to support journalists with resources and information for journalists who are working on stories that cover these topics.

As part of this, we’d like to hear from you, our stakeholders, on how discussions of CSA in the media have affected you. This can be anything from harm caused by misinformation to the benefits of centering survivors’ experiences. If you have something to share, you’re welcome to respond here or DM me. We may ask to use a quote from what you share on our website, with the option to use a pseudonym if you don’t want it associated with your real or online identity.


I’ve found that misinformation about the supposed effects of fictional sexual material (FSM) or virtual child pornography (VCP) content tend to cause harm in both survivor spaces and artistic/adult content and fandom spaces, because they perpetuate claims about these materials that may intuitively sound correct but are broadly unfounded.

Claims that such materials “whet the sexual appetites” of contact sexual abuse (CSA) perpetrators or that they cause social or ‘moral’ harm by allegedly sexualizing children or misrepresenting real children as sex objects.
These claims lack empirical support and cause particular harm to content creators and their consumers by perpetuating the false association of harm by framing the actions of CSA abusers as potential abusers, when in fact most creators and consumers do not engage in such abusive behaviors, nor are they at risk of doing so. It is no different than the claims some people make about aggression depicted in pornography, or porn in general, turning men into sexual aggressors, or violent media, such as video games or movies turning non-violent people into potentially violent, criminal offenders.

‘CSAM’, as a term, was never intended to encompass materials which do not involve the sexual abuse and exploitation of a real child or the deliberate misappropriation of their intrinsic characteristics and likenesses.
It simply makes no logical sense, and the deliberate failure to correct this out of fear of being regarded as dismissive of the harm of CSAM is nothing short of ironic. It conflates the concept of real abuse and real children with concepts that are not equivalent to real abuse or real children, without regard to context, effect, or intent.

All it takes for misinformation to be misinterpreted as information is for people to not correct it, or inform themselves of the facts surrounding it or talk with experts.

I would like to see more action taken in this regard, as I’ve been personally harmed by things such as this, and so have various communities and individuals.


In the same vein as what Chie has mentioned, discussion of fantasy sexual outlets in the media is always heavily one sided. The incident in which a Florida mother claimed that an Asian styled sex doll was made to resemble her Caucasian daughter is a prime example. The media lapped her story up without a single question or a grain of scrutiny. Despite the dozens of comments posted to media websites and YouTube which pointed out many blatant flaws in that report, I have never seen any media outlet respond or investigate.

It seems that laws which restrict access to harmless fictional outlets can be based upon nothing more than hearsay. All First Amendment protections can be violated at any point if a lawmaker simply states that it “protects children”.

On the other hand, if you want to make the claim that fantasy outlets provide some level of protection against CSA / CSAM, you better come equipped with reams of scientific literature and academic studies.