New Study Finds Viewers More ‘Engaged’ on xHamster Than YouTube

LOS ANGELES—YouTube, according to the internet data site, is the second-most trafficked website in the world. The porn tube site xHamster ranks 111th. But content creators looking for “engagement” are much better off uploading porn to xHamster than posting a “mainstream” video on YouTube. 

That is the finding of a new study by researchers at the University of Auckland in New Zealand, who published their findings in the academic journal, Social Network Analysis and Mining. According to the scientists, who say that they analyzed 4 million different xHamster videos uploaded between 2007 and 2018, viewers watched each video about 11 times more often, on average, than they watched any individual YouTube video.

The study found that xHamster contains only a small fraction of the number of videos on YouTube — about four million compared to YouTube’s five billion videos. In addition, while xHamster users uploaded an average of 2,000 videos per 24-hour period, YouTube receives 500 hours of video uploads every minute.

But xHamster can get by with much less content, because viewers are hungrier for porn than they are for the variety of offerings on YouTube. According to the University of Auckland findings, an average YouTube video will be viewed 5,500 times. But an xHamster video receives an average of 68,000 views. 

Comparing the median number of views presents an even more stark contrast. The median number of views for an xHamster video was 17,000 — meaning than half of all xHamster videos are viewed more than 17,000 times, half fewer. 

The median number of views on YouTube was just 82.

“Put simply this means xHamster videos are likely to get almost 200 times the number of views a YouTube video will get,” the study’s co-author Aniket Mahanti said. “And that’s not just about the number of videos available, it means that users are continuing to watch whatever is posted to xHamster which in turn is evidence that there is very strong demand for this content.”

The research also showed that porn viewers, unlike “mainstream” video viewers, are “constantly looking for fresh content which in turn might mean a small number of individuals are consistently looking for something they haven’t seen before because they have already viewed a lot of a site’s content,” according to Mahanti.

Most videos on xHamster receive their largest number of views in their first three days online, making porn more comparable to breaking news than to content posted on YouTube.

The study also showed that despite attempts around the world to ban it, porn only continues to grow in popularity. According to the study, between 2013 and 2017, the number of videos uploaded to xHamster increased by a factor of three.

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