For the first time in recent history, it looks like porn sales are being affected by the economy.

According to Clusterstock, the porn industry was always thought to be this unstoppable recession-proof force. Much like alcohol and tobacco, people wouldn’t stop buying even if they were completely broke.

Looks like that conventional wisdom is going the way of so many soiled pieces of computer equipment. In a recent article, WIRED interviewed the president and founder of Wicked Pictures to find out what’s happening with the state of the industry. Things don’t look good:

“From my experience, as long as I’ve been in this business, this is the first time I can say that we’re absolutely feeling the effects of the economy,” says Steve Orenstein, president and founder of Wicked Pictures, and a 29-year veteran of the adult-entertainment industry. “There was a line we used to use about this business being recession proof. When people talked about the economy, we’d say our business is fine. But look, now you’d have to be blind and deaf not to see that there are problems.”

Orenstein hasn’t cut any pictures out of the production pipeline — he still plans on making 48 films this year because, he says, cutting back on pictures would only cut back on his profits. He is, however, looking at ways to reduce expenses, especially since he’s facing increased oil-related costs for transportation, distribution and for DVD cases, which are an oil-based product. And raising prices to cover the added costs is out of the question, given the economic environment.

Unfortunately for the porn industry, they are learning a little too late that having a ‘library’ of adult DVDs lying around your house isn’t something to be desired by most people. Selling these DVDs for $30 to $40 is a dying business. Services that capitalize on the trend of mail-order exchange video services like NetFlix or free online content will be the only ones to survive this recession in consumer spending.

I can only imagine what pornography in the future will be like. Will it be some type of memory chip implanted in your brain that you pay for discreetly? How embarrassing would it be if your roommate walked in on you with your porn memory chip still implanted your brain?! Yikes!

(great headline here, btw) – Clusterstock: Now We Know It’s A Bad Recession: Even Porn Industry Getting Slammed, July 23, 2008

WIRED: Turns Out Porn Isn’t Recession Proof, July 21, 2008

image via Determinal