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Biebers, Bucks and Boobs

By Gerald McGrew on December 13, 2011 in Other

It’s been another action-packed couple of months in the tech world. Steve Jobs shuffled off his mortal coil, then the new iPhone was released and Apple fanatics still in mourning had to try very hard not to crack the shits when they learnt it wasn’t the much-heralded iPhone 5, but rather an upgrade of the current model. There was one feature of the upgrade that dominated the conversation, a voice-activated assistant named Siri. Using Siri you can simply ask the iPhone to find you a restaurant or remind you to pick up your dry-cleaning and voila: you’ve been busted telling your phone to do simple shit for you, and anyone that heard thinks you’re lazy and probably a bit of a dick. If you’re using it on a bus or train, they’re probably correct.

Speaking of being a bit of a dick, I saw some great Internet stats on Justin Bieber. When I say great I mean depressing. He has become the first person to reach two billion views on YouTube, with almost half a billion of those being for ‘Baby’. In 2010 The Bieber accounted for 3% of Twitter traffic, and now has 14 million followers. If the vast majority of Twitter traffic is complete crap, it’s safe to assume that his mentions contributed heavily to the steaming pile that is the Twitterverse. A more pleasing factoid is that ‘Justin Bieber syphilis’ hit number one on Google Trends in 2010. Obviously there are people out there that know something I don’t.

Still talking stats, in a recent report the smart folks at McKinsey have tried very hard to work out how big the global Internet economy is. Now while there’s always someone spouting figures about the value of the Internet, I believe McKinsey’s because over the years they’ve done an excellent job of charging global companies millions of dollars in consulting fees, then watching those same corporations go broke. Oh the irony. Anyway, they’ve decided that with two billion people now connected to the Internet there is almost $8 trillion dollars in online commerce exchanging each year.

And yes, I know what you’re all wondering: how much of that is spent on porn?

In 2000, about 70% of the $1.3 billion spent online went to watching tiny figures doing the wild thing on very small monitors. Now the screens are bigger, and so are the bucks. Porn websites constitute 12% of the Internet, and apparently two out of three viewers are men. The rest are women and bemused pets. Despite the average porn site visit clocking in at 6.5 minutes, $3000 is spent on porn by a total of 28,000 people every second of the day. This means that the annual global online porn spend is about $4.9 billion, or roughly $2.45 from every Internet user on the planet. Of course not everyone online is paying this. Someone is obviously paying my share, and probably yours too. I’d guess that a relatively small number of dedicated bluey-lovers are covering the onerous production costs of hand-held video cameras, renting a mate’s lounge room and clear plastic high-heels.

So now we bid farewell to 2011. Have a great break and see you early next year for my 2012 predictions. There is one forecast I can safely make now: I’ll write about porn, and you’ll bloody love it!