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The 'average' faces of 10,000 porn stars: Nikki and David Lee

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Everyone has preconceptions of the adult film industry — but despite the vast quantity of information about actors and films available online, it's often hard to get a comprehensive overview of a large and influential part of our culture. By surreptitiously pulling 10,000 records from the venerable community-run Internet Adult Film Database (which has somewhere over 120,000 records of performers and directors as of this writing), though, writer Jon Millward was able to tease out average information for everything from the most common hair color — brown — to the most common stage names: Nikki for women and David for men, with Lee the most popular last name across the board.

While the most eye-catching part of his analysis may be the physical averages, having a massive database also lets Millward flesh out or complicate the common narratives about porn. Luke Ford, a former adult video gossip writer, once said that "Most girls who enter the porn industry do one video and quit" because the experience is so unpleasant — something Millward can put to the test. The results? "The actual number of single film quitters is between 10 percent and 30 percent," he writes. "It’s difficult to settle on an exact figure, because it differs depending on how you sample the women, but one thing’s for sure: most women don’t quit after one film — in fact, the majority (at least 53 percent) do three or more."

Besides simply averaging information, the data lets Millward fact-check out preconceptions about porn

Millward will be publishing a full report on his work "very soon," which will hopefully add more insight and better illuminate some of the methodology — though how he averaged some of the information is very clear, the more subtle distinctions (like the difference between "MILF" and "Cougar" in an analysis of female roles) could benefit from more explanation. While the IAFD covers male and female performers, most of his work so far has also been exclusively on women, for somewhat obvious reasons.