Thursday, May 31, 2007 - man hunting tools of the future

The STOP AIDS Project, a San Francisco fixture since 1985, is dedicated to preventing HIV transmission among gay and bisexual men. Yesterday marked the launch of their new website

Feeding off their recent realignment towards a more structural approach, provides tools for finessing your online hunt, tips for staying safe when hooking up (including from identity theft and muggings), and commentary about trends and language in the hookup world., an older ISIS project, is decidedly less gadget based, and offers hookup safety gems in brief a slide show. The site was an adaptation from image-based print materials, which speaks to the image based presentation.

Regardless of approach, both sites aim to help folks who hookup online make better choices. For the more tech savvy crowd, increased search capability could help you find the sharpest needle in the haystack. For the cruisers without a minute to spare, has all the tidbits you need to keep you on your toes.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Safe Sex Fridays - Masturbate-a-thon

Time is running out to get in on the ninth annual Masturbate-a-thon May 26th, 2007 at the Porn Palace in San Francisco. Why you ask? The Center for Sex and Culture lays it out:
  • Masturbation is the safest sex
  • More masturbation means more sexual self-awareness
  • Masturbation with a partner can be educational and hot
Be a masturbater or a spectator or just celebrate at home. Either way this event is guaranteed to be a great start to the holiday weekend.

Cory Silverberg had a chat with organizers Carol Queen and Robert Morgan Lawrence to see just what the last nine years have brought us. Also check out this list of the best masturbation scenes from mainstream movies.

Crash course: recommended video game tutors

I'm no videogame expert. Besides a computer I have never owned any video game system beyond the Atari 2600 that I picked up at a Santa Cruz flea market for $3 in 1989, the year that Nintendo changed home gaming.

Now that I'm no longer 9, my interest in video games has morphed a bit (I'm still a vintage game lover and mostly play Pacman and Tetris online)...enough about me. Video games are a growing part of the media now. Like the way that newspapers have moved online and become more interactive, video games have become more dynamic and educational possibilities abound.

ISIS-Inc is interested in the ways that gaming can be used to communicate sexual health messages or teach STD and HIV prevention. Like Deb said yesterday, "Sex is fun. Sex ed is boring." To stay on top of what's out there in the gaming/sex-and-games-world who do I depend on?

In no particular order, this is who helps me:

Sexy Videogameland blogger and The Aberrant Gamer columnist Leigh Alexander. Her analyses of the sly sex threads of Hentai games is a must read.

Bonnie's Heroine Sheik and Joystiq author of the column Playing Dirty Bonnie Ruberg. Bonnie has her fingers everywhere and it's always interesting.

Watercoolergames, Persuasive Games, Ian Bogost and crew. Fabulous, wonderful, necessary.

Sex & Games. A super news source for all things game/sex related.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Dildonics Flashback

Thank you slashdong for the time warp. Check out the state of dildonics ten years ago.

Online Videos by

Monday, May 21, 2007

Love affair in under 140 characters

OurChart, a kickass networking/blogging/multimedia showcase for queer women and their friends, is using Twitter (microblogging tool extraordinaire) in the most delicious way. UnCharted, a soap opera inspired love story in installments of 140 character or less, is being updated every 15 minutes. And because this love story is twittering on throughout the day, you can easily follow along on your phone.

Sneak peak for geeks:
"katrina: @allie: What's your special talent?"

"allie: @katrina: multi-tasking? right now i'm running a mtg, browsing and flirting with you. is it working? wanna go out?"


Read the OurChart interview with Popnography blogger Shana Naomi Krochmal, or check our the All Things Considered piece on NPR for more.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Internet censorship around the globe

The Associated Press reports that at least 25 countries world wide block websites to residents. The types of sites researchers found most often blocked you ask?

"...China, Iran, Myanmar, Syria, Tunisia and Vietnam had the most extensive filters for political sites. Iran, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Tunisia, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen had the strictest social-filtering practices, blocking pornography, gambling and gay and lesbian sites.

In some countries, censorship was narrow. South Korea, for instance, tends to block only information about its neighboring rival, North Korea.

Yet researchers found no filtering at all in Russia, Israel or the Palestinian territories despite political conflicts there.

Governments generally had no mechanism for citizens to complain about any erroneous blocking, with Saudi Arabia, Oman and the United Arab Emirates being among the exceptions..."

It seem like the United States should be added here as well, with access to Youtube and Myspace recently cut off for military personnel, various levels of filtering depending on your work place, and country wide battles over internet access rights in public libraries.

EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation), working to protect digital rights, is a wonderful resource. Check out their legal guide for bloggers.

Interesting tidbit: 25% of UK work force is without internet at work. They get around it by using their mobile phones. Thanks

Safe Sex Fridays - dry hump demo

Thanks to defective yeti and Tremble for introducing me to PeerPressure, their lovely safe sex example, and companion literature, Furniture Humper Magazine.

For more safe sex demos check out PeerPressure5 on Myspace.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Online Clinic Listings - STD, HIV, contraception, etc.

If you need an HIV test, STD screening or contraception and family planning services where can you go? Many of us are familiar with what's in our own neighborhoods and where we can go, but in rural areas it's not always that easy. It can be even more challenging if you are seeking confidential services.

Here are some resources we know of. If you have a search tool you use let us know so we can add to this list for clinic sleuths nationwide.

The California Family Health Council (CFHC) list title X clinics searchable by zip code. Title X is the only federal program devoted to provision of family planning and reproduction health care. Title X clinics provide patient education and counseling; breast and pelvic exams; STD, HIV and cervical cancer screenings; and pregnancy counseling and diagnosis. is the CDCs HIV testing clinic finder. Searchable by city, county, state, zip code, and type of testing offered (oral, anonymous, confidential, free)., the peer-to-peer STD and HIV notification system has clinic search functionality. Each city or state has a map with clickable regions. Shown above is Minnesota, the latest to launch. InSPOT clinics are searchable three ways.

Myspace to remove registered sex offenders

The New York Times today published a story about Myspace's plans to rid the networking site of known sex offenders. Myspace says this will hinge on whether state officials subpoena the names...something the said officials don't think is necessary. It seems that there are two different goals here. Myspace wants to keep the so called predators off their site, and the attorneys general want to find folks and prosecute them. Perhaps that's why there has been a cooperation lapse between the two parties.

Connecticut attorney general, Richard Blumenthal says, “We have a valid and viable need to know about convicted sexual offenders who may pose a threat to children.” The problem however is that using Myspace doesn't necessarily mean using it in a threatening way. And how do you suppose that will be proven? By eroding the privacy of everyone using the site for its intended purpose?

Check out Myspace's safety tips or tips for parents. It does seem like a better approach to educate the majority of users about staying safe, rather than booting every register offender who may just be connecting with friends after time apart.

In related news: U.S. soldiers worldwide can no longer use Myspace or Youtube to keep in touch with their friends and families, although the Marine core is using the networking site for recruitment. Pftt!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Bowling pin vagina - any questions?

If anyone has any information on this one, I'm all ears. I can't quite connect the dots.

Virtual Vagina with VCS

Apparently: "7-motors simulate completely as of a women's mouth, hands and sensation of insertion as it interlock with images."

"Every stroke will be transmitted to the virtual vagina."

Update: This thing will cost ~200 bucks. I asked.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Hooking up online - some quirky truth(s)

I've been following two (one queer and one gay) Massachusetts bloggers, both ultra candid about their experiences with online dating and sex. Their blogs are embedded in the site, a UCSF and ISIS joint project.

So now, let me share my favorite entries from these two spill-it-alls:

Priests, bathrooms, etc. Vlad Junior is a good read all around.

Holy Porn - Priest hookup
Bathroom break
Bathroom break 2
My hookup and my dad - a real tear jerker
Uncle, Nephew, different times - need i say more

Oh Daniel. Daniel and his boyfriend have been trying out and open relationship.

Relationshit! The Victor and Daniel intro
Suck my dick in a bathroom
Relationsigns (cartoons!)
Polyamory here I come Victor and Daniel update
Webcam boy Part 1

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

More STI hookup site reviews as promised

A while back I wrote a post with some short reviews of dating sites for folks with viral STIs. As promised, I'm back with 3 more STI dating sites. In order from good to shouldn't exist, here are three more:
I like this free site for many reasons. Like most hookup sites, has a clause asking married individuals to please not use the service. Yet, unlike most hookup sites, STI* and non-STI focused alike, MatchSTD has an exception for people "participating in an alternative-style relationships." It also has a downhome feeling to its general language, probably b/c it is run by just 2 guys (both of whom admit that they don't have any STDs themselves but have friends whose dating lives suffered severely). One thing I couldn't figure out though was how to select United States as my location...perhaps it's a default, but that wasn't clear to me.
This site looks really nice (nicer than MatchSTD), but the profile logic is a bit wierd. When you go to sign up you select what your are, as in your gender. Then there's a drop down menu for "I am with," which is actually the list of possible STIs. Like STDMatch (not to be confused with MatchSTD) it lists chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis. Okay, folks, once again, these are CURABLE! They are not chronic-have-for-the-rest-of-your-life STIs. Get some antibiotics and THEN get a date. Jeez! Another thing that was a bit funky was the "My match" drop down menu. You can only select one answer and the choices include: American, Baptist, mediterranean, hispanic/latino, etc. "Are you American? I only date citizens." Whatever. Strange. ("time to start dating again..." is their tagline)
H-date is herpes focused, although there is some mention of HPV. Oddly, the terms and services section says, "You further represent and warrant that you are 13 years of age or older and that your use of the will not violate any applicable law." 13 years old on a dating site even if you're not breaking any laws? I went on to check out how profiles are built and saw that it includes the option to check boxes such as, "I can have sex with a good looking stranger anytime" or "I'll sleep with anyone who wants me." So while I applaud their acknowledgement that young people have sex, they should be doing something to ensure that young people meeting on their site are just having sex with other young people. At least setting up their search logic differently. Another large oversight is that a person of any age can say they 'prefer' a 13 yo. Oops.

*I tend to use "STD" because it's what CA state STD control still uses, the CDC uses, etc. There has been a move among health professionals and public health communities to use STI (sexually transmitted infection) for several reasons. 1. An infection is much less stigmatized than a disease. 2. Many STIs have no symptoms. People may be infected, but are not 'diseased.' I am constantly corrected when I use 'STD' and am trying to change. This * will help me remember.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Multiple ways to (learn) Wiffiti

I just wanted to give a little Wiffiti update and share the varied ways folks are explaining how to text to their Wiffitis (since a lot of my friends were having trouble).

Wiresounds: Make a text message like "@WIR35 Hey Max, how's it going?" and send it to "25622"

Pixelpixel: To make me happy text me starting with @pixelfly then your message to 25622.

Itoldyoutherewouldbebacon: Because I'm something of a moron, it took me forever to figure out how to send a text, what with the "text @whatever message" instuctions. It made zero sense to me. ... 1. If you want your name to come up on your texts, as opposed to the wiffitiXXXX (XXXX being the last four digits of your phone number), you should first create a test message thusly: name (insert name here), then send the text to 25622. ... 2. Any other text you should with to send should essentially be the same: @bacony and then whatever you want to say, then send.

Here are a few more Wiffitis to play with:

As far as my own Wiffiti/public health exploration goes: SVGL (hey there) felt that using Wiffiti in a classroom setting could be a good idea. A nice way of submitting questions or having a discussion about sensitive topics. A public health friend who shall remain nameless felt that Wiffiti would be way too disruptive. As in people texting all sorts of rude sh*t during a lecture or something. Others needed help or two tries to get it right. That might mean that it needs easier instructions. Getting rid of the pink arrow step would be nice.

Oh, also, if Wiffiti isn't showing up on your computer, you may need to update to Flash 8 or higher.