An Argentinian company have been slated for a so-called “consent condom” which requires four hands to open.
The condom was unveiled in a promotional video shared from the official Twitter account for Tulipan, an adult toys and condom company.
The video includes the hashtag #PlacerConsentido, which means “permitted pleasure”.
Created by advertising agency BBDO Argentina, the clip showcases a condom box which requires four hands to open it by clicking four buttons on the top and sides of the box simultaneously, in order to demonstrate their sexual consent.
However, the product has been met with scepticism on Twitter.
— Tulipán Argentina (@TulipanARG) March 27, 2019
Users have voiced a number of objections to the product, deeming it “utter bullshit”.
It benefits the wrong person
The promotional video features a tagline which translates as: “If it’s not a yes, it’s a no,” and “Without consent there is no pleasure”.
Except, several people have objected the condom might be misused as a means of “proving” consent in rape trials, even if this is not truly the case.
The worrying thing is that this frames consent as a ‘discussion’ and implies that the real issue is that women might make it up/exaggerate after consensual sex. This is a product designed essentially to protect men from rape accusations, not to protect women from rape
— Holly Baxter (@h0llyb4xter) April 10, 2019
Let’s be honest, it’s probably for the rich people and celebrities to use to make perfect sure they don’t end up on a twitter #MeToo movement. I’ve seen things about voice activated consent thingys, I’ve heard girls say dumb stuff drunk, those won’t help either
— Brett Collins (@Boxedoutmma) April 11, 2019
Consent can change at any time
What’s more, “consent” is not reserved to a single moment.
Several people shared the argument that sexual consent can be taken away at any time during intercourse, before or after a condom is involved. So-called sexual consent apps have been criticised for the same reason.
Therefore, a condom which irrevocably “proves” consent after it is opened is problematic.
I know this is probs just a way to try and go viral but:
1. This dumbs down the idea of healthy communication re: sex in a harmful way
2. It’s the condom equivalent of dudes asking for recorded videos of consent
3. Putting on a condom ≠ automatic consent of all sexual activity https://t.co/Xuq58MKJlW
— Julia Pugachevsky (@jaypugz) April 10, 2019
Stunned at this. This doesn’t prove consent in the first place, and consent can change at any time before or after a condom is opened. How have they not thought this through?
— Lara Belle (@MissLaraBelle) April 10, 2019
— Mac&Moore (@macandmoore) April 11, 2019
People shouldn’t be discouraged from using condoms
With this in mind, they took issue with the idea of something which might dissuade people from doing so.
This is just gonna make people wanna use them less
— Maggie (@Electricbeaut_5) April 11, 2019
Great way to also promote unsafe sex. Well done👍
— A.j. Stranger #UTAG (@AStrangerJ) April 11, 2019
Yea because drunk people are super patient with things.
— Matt Likehart (@MattLikehart) April 10, 2019
Potential rapists likely don’t care about using a condom
Some people objecting to the product have suggested someone who is capable of rape would not be using a condom in the first place.
If a dude is crazy enough to not get consent, he’d probably not give a sht about a 4handrequiringcondom and just go bareback. Result being worse. While this little play of activist capitalism seems empowering on the surface, it is utter bullshit.
— Thom Yok (@ThomYokh) April 11, 2019
Consent is important, but do you honestly believe a person not worried about consent is worried about condom usage? Especially one that is a puzzle to get into in the first place 🤔
— Hillary [Pokket] Nicole (@Pokket) April 10, 2019
Highlighting the importance of consent? I’m betting condom use isn’t high on the list of things that concern the type of guy who isn’t worried about consent. Preferably, we put those guys behind a steel door that requires two hands and a big key to open. ⚖⛓🗝🔒
— David McElveen (@DaveMcElveen) April 10, 2019
Yes because we all know the types of people who are rapists care about using condoms so much they’ll buy this expensive one that requires four hands over a cheap one that doesn’t. Not even mentioning disabilities. This is a dumb product.
— mike bonham (@MikeBonham95) April 11, 2019
It does not consider people with disabilities
Even if this condom were to be used practically, many have pointed out it is designed for able-bodied people with two functioning hands.
As a guy with one functioning hand, I’d be screwed. Or not!!
— Garrett Turbett (@GarrettTurbett) April 10, 2019
What if one or more people only have one arm?
— Ben Brengman (@BenBrengman) April 10, 2019
What about people who only have one arm? Fyi.
— Hardley Davidson (@MultiPlatinumHD) April 10, 2019
You probably don’t need two people to open it
From another perspective, it was suggested a person could easily tamper with the product if they wanted to, taking away the need for four hands.
I’ve successfully opened these by myself using both of my hands and feet. My wife was so turned off I ended up throwing it away.
— Herschel (@herschel180) April 11, 2019
Unless that box is made outta vibranium I’m sure someone will be able to open it by themselves
— chris campbell (@datdudecc) April 10, 2019
Yup, because two hands can’t rip a cardboard box?
— Sean E. (@534n1t0) April 10, 2019
It doesn’t go far enough
Ultimately, there was a sense the makers behind this product took too narrow a view of sexual consent.
READ MORE: STIs are on the rise among young people
People argued it is much more important to educate adults about sexual consent rather than to simply make a “statement” product.
That’s powerful stuff alright. It’ll work the same way making alcohol and cigarettes only available to 18 years + worked.
How about teaching people rather than making ‘statements’ 🙄
— Irish Davro (@irishdavro) April 10, 2019
I mean it makes a statement and makes a solid art piece but in reality direct education on consent and having consequences for not respecting consent will actually make a difference
— Genderless Fuck-Up (@killerbear28) April 10, 2019
Great idea. I’m sure this solves all sorts of social problems. #sarcasm
— Jeff with a G (@NCpatsfan2) April 11, 2019
Radical idea but lets broaden sex ed beyond putting a condom on a banana and include lessons on consent. Cos making condoms harder to open isn’t gonna encourage anyone to use them and if someone doesn’t care about consent they’re prob not gonna care much about using protection
— ꧁ ᎷᏋᏝᏝᎥᏋ-ᏗᏒᏖ ꧂ (@mellie_art) April 10, 2019
Last year, a nationwide poll pointed to the need for greater education around sexual consent.
The poll of 2003 participants aged between 14 and 55 by the Family Planning Association (FPA) for Sexual Health Week 2018, also found that 9% of those asked said that it wasn’t okay to withdraw consent if you’ve been bought dinner or drinks.
Some 53% of those polled also didn’t think it’s OK for someone to withdraw sexual consent if they’ve already taken their clothes off.