Sex and business sometimes go together quite nicely ... and sometimes they don’t. The world of business can be tricky to navigate regardless of your product, but sex-based business is particularly challenging. When it works, it can be nicely profitably and wonderfully rewarding. When it doesn't, well, it can be a mess. This week we look at some sex business successes - and failures.
Sex Stories We Love: Sense8tional News, Oh No They Didn't, & Outta Here
Well, this is an interesting twist, but I am sure many folks just want some beta-blockers to drown out the possibility. When it was announced that Netflix was cancelling "Sense8," many people were quite upset. A remarkably beautiful and scenic show, it incorporates more varied sexual and gender identities than the rest of television combined. It was seen by many as a watershed program and the amazing Wachowski sisters have been lauded for the show's beautiful filming and intricate script. However, it was a very expensive show and Netflix pulled the plug. Now, though, it seems a very unlikely ally has presented itself. Porn tube site xHamster has offered to produce a third season of Sense8. This is definitely an unconventional move, hosting something so mainstream on a tube site. Can the two worlds mix? Would you continue to watch the Sense8 story unfold if it were produced by xHamster?
Truly Sex Positive Workspaces
It can be great fun to work in the sex product business. As someone who has been occasionally involved as a reviewer and media contact, I can see that you need a passion and a desire to truly present sex in a positive way to get the most out of working with sex toys. Let’s not forget that those folks who are creating sex toys are working together as most other businesses do, and that isn’t always going to be easy. Sure, sex is fun and it sounds like a great idea to work in the realm of sex all day, but sex is still a challenging concept for many folks. A workplace based around sex products has tremendous potential for difficult situations - unless there is strong leadership. Check out the excellent ideas and examples provided by Alex Fine, CEO of Dame Products, to Polly Rodriguez of Unbound, to Meika Hollender of Sustain Natural, three women leading their companies as great examples of overcoming the potential stigma and toxicity around sex.
Oh No They Didn't
Privacy is integral to any sex-based event and both organizers and participants are expected to adhere to requirements such as no recording, no photos, etc. Unfortunately, at the recent Woodhull Sexual Freedom Summit, a panel was surreptitiously recorded and posted online, and was later used it as part of a publicity campaign. Attendees to that panel had no idea they were being recorded and it was against the policy. There were other issues with this panel that left many attendees angry. We expect to see a lot of healthy debate on this one in the coming weeks.
Teledildonic Tsunami Coming?
Get ready sex toy reviewers: you and your bits might be very busy with an onslaught of highly advanced sex toys. Next year could be a truly groundbreaking year when it comes to the advancement of sex products. With the patent on teledildonic sex products about the expire in 2018, will we see a deluge of new sex tech that has been waiting in the wings? There have been numerous legal battles over sex inventions and innovations, but as the patent dies out, the shackles will come off. We’ll keep a keen...eye...on this unfolding story.
Sex Toys and Response
As more and more people are enjoying and purchasing sex toys, we’re relying more on the many sex toy reviewers noted above to help us make our playtime picks. Let’s face it, sex products aren’t cheap and it can be difficult to justify the expense. So, when you pick one, you want to get it right. So let’s give a little love here to all of the sex toys reviewers out there who guide us on our orgasmic way. It is definitely not an easy job. You can be tasked with trying and then writing or talking about toys that did nothing for you, hurt you, or even offended you. Yet you can also learn a lot about yourself and your own sexual responses as you fill up your tickle trunk with more and more product. Carolyn Yates discovered some aspects of her own sexual response and desire through her sex toy reviewing that goes far beyond comparing vibration speeds.
Finally, OKCupid banned notorious white supremacist Chris Cantwell. Is this good business or a PR stunt? After reading his dating tips in the Gizmodo article, I vote that banning him was a needed community service.
Jon Pressick is a sex-related media gadabout. For more than 20 years, Jon has been putting sex into our daily conversations at his long-running site SexInWords—as a writer, editor, publisher, sex toy reviewer, radio host, workshop facilitator, event producer and more. These days, he focuses on writing for Kinkly, GetMeGiddy, The Buzz and PinkPlayMags and editing Jason Armstrong's series of Solosexual books. You can find him on Twitter at @Sexinwords.