A commentary and resource on Law and Sexuality by Professor Chris Ashford and guests
Damon Dogg – formerly of Treasure Island Media (NSFW) – revealed on Twitter at the start of the year that he had left TIM and was branching out into new projects. He indicated in responses to followers that he had done so ‘very willingly’ but also that he couldn’t talk about why he left and there was never (as far as I can see) an “I’m off” style tweet. In January, his Flickr stream featured a name page photograph of ‘Damon Dogg, Factory Videos’ from XBIZLA so we kinda knew where he had moved to.
In fact, I hadn’t noticed anything else reporting his departure. TIM’s blog continued to make reference to Dogg as part of promotion for Manfuck Manifesto, the TIM tattoo challenge and the SD/STW promo in New Orleans in February. None of these posts indicated that he was still part of the company, but nor did they suggest otherwise. He was clearly part of the TIM narrative. He has been a high profile figure in front of and behind the camera and his tattoo (see right) will continue to see him as a TIM figure. It will be interesting to see if it remains, and what the tatt will continue to mean for this particularly notoriously dirty Dogg.
Factory is where Dogg worked previously and even once Damon had made his name with TIM via his ‘Damon Blows America’ series, Factory included him as part of a compilation of scenes from those past performers who had moved on to be porn ‘stars’ (not a term TIM would ever use). Consequently, you can see a young (and much more innocent looking) Dogg in ‘First Cum’ (NSFW) released by Factory. So arguably, he’s now back where it all began.
The news story (which reads very much like a verbatim press release) states that Factory Videos is happy to welcome the return of two infamously creative directors. The first, Leif Gobo is apparently a veteran of nearly 20 years of adult video production with companies that span the range of gay porn. Gobo has directed for many big studios, including Falcon and Raging Stallion among many more.
‘The notorious Damon Dogg, formerly of Treasure Island Media, began his career in porn with Factory Videos back in 2001. Damon Dogg has since been influential in the direction of reality based gonzo style bareback porn. Plowing down boundaries and previously “untouchable” topics in documenting sleazy man sex, today, Dogg is working with Factory Video producing his new studio Damon Dogg’s Cum Factory. Dogg is also joining the company’s travelling production team to assist in finding the sleaziest men in the US.’
Interestingly his notoriety – or rather that associated with TIM – is what helps to add value to his appointment for the company. Finally, we are told that Factory Videos based in San Francisco, currently has 10 full time employees on staff. Factory has been continuing to grow steadily since starting in 1998. It has a collection of over 350 DVDs, eight commerce web sites and an affiliate program, Dickbank.com.
What could they possibly mean by these ‘untouchable’ topics? Dogg’s BarebackRT profile (a sort of bareback Gaydar for those not familiar with the site) – which is linked from his current blog – clearly states that he is HIV positive and given he is (as also indicated on his blog) a versatile bottom. Scenes from his new films, already posted on his blog, indicate that there will be fucking aplenty. These scenes will clearly position Factory alongside TIM as a company openly producing ‘positive’ porn. This is interesting in itself but given the recent LA condom measure law and attempts to extend it across California, it adds to the seeding of bareback and high-profile poz porn bareback studios in the State at a very time when some in the porn industry must be hoping they’ll be quiet.
Gay men barebacking on camera is enough to get law-makers in a tizz it seems. Men barebacking on camera who are HIV positive may just finish some of those law-makers off. Defibrillators on stand-by!
A number of recently high profile TIM characters have been silent in recent times – Gehno, Ryan Sullivan and of course, Dawson all spring to mind. Whilst TIM appears to increasingly ‘introduce’ characters it doesn’t quite say goodbye to the same figures (and the above trio may still be working for TIM – certainly RS was the last time I asked but I think Gehno is gone and Dawson ‘retired’). On the one hand, you might ask, well why? Why bother continuing to tell their story, or explain their departure when they re no longer on the pay-roll?
Well, given the way these figures are defined as individuals, there is an understandable desire among fans for knowledge about ‘what happened next’, and in the case of someone like Dogg, he will always be TIM wherever he is. I don’t know, it’s one aspect of the whole porn industry that I sort of understand why it’s done, but at same time, I don’t quite understand. Take football (soccer to my American friends), players are celebrated when they join a club, but well-loved players and managers are still respected and celebrated long after moving to other clubs. Dogg is one of those iconic players at TIM, and as such he’ll long be remembered in the same breath as TIM whether he continues to work for them or not. The fans seem to get that, but I’m not sure TIM – along with the rest of the industry – get that.
Dogg also blogs (NSFW) about his new projects (and various other bits and bobs) here (curiously, Dogg’s previous blog has been deleted)