Have you ever peaked at porn while on the clock?
One EPA government employee apparently did. In fact, the employee did so 2-6 hours per day. That's up to 75% of the work day. The controversy has now sparked new legislation to ban government employees from watching porn at work (as if you need to legislate that one).
While I think the case of this government worker is extreme, it made me wonder, why do employees watch porn at work? Is it because they don't have internet access at home? Highly unlikely. When we look back on history and how adult content was accessed in the olden days you either had to go to an adult movie theater (think dark and seedy) or settle for still images in a magazine.
With the advent of paid television subscription services such as "On TV" things changed. Now pornography could be watched safely and secretly from the privacy of one's bedroom. Next, enter the VCR. Access to sexually explicit materials expanded even further as producers scrambled to create adult content to fit this new viewing medium.
But by far, the Internet has ushered in an explosive jump in porn's accessibility. In what can easily be called an unexpected occurrence, the Internet created a new entry point for amateur producers of porn who could, for the first time, compete shoulder to shoulder with large studios. More producers = more porn on the web. When you add in the proliferation of smartphone users (the United Nations reports there are more people with access to mobile phones than to toilets) and the technological advancements in streaming mobile content, now, access to sexually explicit material is simpler, faster, and cheaper than in years past.
So back to the original question. Why would someone risk embarrassment, diminished reputation, discipline, and even termination by watching porn at work? I don't think it's due to boredom as reported (Lord help us because we'd have an epidemic on our hands). It could be because that employee just couldn't stop. When a person views pornography, the dopamine chemical is produced in the brain at dramatic levels, inducing a drug-like sensation similar to crack cocaine. Additional "feel-good" chemicals are also formed, which reduce the body's ability to furnish quantities at normal levels in ordinary circumstances (e.g. kissing, etc.), therefore causing the porn-addicted psyche to demand more and more sexually explicit materials.
Have you looked or are you hooked?