3D is coming - eventually

Adult firms were quick to explore the possibilities of multi-angle DVD and high-definition DVD - so are 3D TV firms beating a path to the industry's door? That would probably be an understatement. "We're getting hit up by a lot of different companies who have interesting 3D TV technology, but as far as adult goes I think that as long as you have to put on a pair of glasses, that's not something people want to do when they watch adult movies," Hirsch laughs.

"There are several systems that are supposedly going to show 3D without glasses - in fact, I'm supposed to look at one tomorrow, an iPhone app that enables you to shoot in 3D and watch it on an iPhone without glasses. It's obvious that Hollywood is moving in that direction [and] I think that it would be natural for the adult guys to do it as well, but it has to be under the right circumstances. They need to perfect it without using glasses."

Tubesites

PORN PROBLEMS: Tube sites that enable user uploads are a big headache for adult producers. Tracking down unauthorised copies is a full-time job

Are adult firms wary of format wars after investing in HD DVD? "Not necessarily. If there's something that looks interesting to us we'll invest money and try to make it work. Sometimes it works. Sometimes it doesn't. That's okay. I think it's important that we are out there looking for interesting new technology, because our industry has changed so much - even in the last year."

User generated discontent

When our sister magazine .net investigated Porn 2.0 in 2007, there was a lot of hype about user-generated content - but Hirsch predicted that user-created porn would only ever be a niche market, with most people preferring to watch good-looking people in good-looking movies. It looks like he was right - ugly people bumping uglies has yet to overtake the mainstream porn industry - but the rise of the Tube sites has still caused problems for adult filmmakers.

"The abundance of free adult sites - free sites and pirate sites - has cut into the profits of a lot of adult producers," Hirsch says. "Our entire industry is trying to figure out how to deal with it, whether it's by digital fingerprinting or other ways. Right now we have people spending all their time scouring the internet for copyright infringers, and that's going to be a big priority for the industry in the next few years."

Like Hollywood studios, adult producers are investigating formats that are hard to pirate such as 3D TV, but they're also looking at something that's utterly pirate-proof: internet-enabled sex toys.