The Growth of Porn - Alison Arngrim Sounds Off
The sexual commodifcation and monetizing of younger and younger models and actresses is indeed increasing. Like most decisions made in the entertainment industry, the decision to market a child in an obviously sexualized manner is not done with any concern for the child's future or personal well-being, but is simply based on market supply and demand. (So is actual child pornography, by the way.)
I think this involves multiple factors, including, but not limited to: yes, the massive increase in child pornography, (whose victims are younger than ever before), as what is "acceptable" to the "extreme" markets expands, so must the so-called "mainstream" expand in order to not "lose sales".
This coupled with the lowering of the age of what are seen as "consumers" of products and fashion, leads to a market where children can be seen as sources of income on both the marketing and the sales side.
And personally? In the "child actor" realm, I think many exploiters of children in entertainment (and yes, even the less scrupulous stage parents), are finding that older children are growing more savvy about exploitation. The kids have watched a few episodes of "E! True Hollywood Story!" and may actually resist being made into the next Gary Coleman or Dana Plato.
So if you're talking about the kind of people looking to live off their kids and raid the trust fund, it may be necessary to indoctrinate the children at a much younger age than before, when they're much more compliant and docile. And can't fight back.
(Which again, is what the child pornography producers are doing now, too.)