A new Planned Parenthood campaign that seeks to leverage the social media explosion features condoms with QR codes that allow users to “check-in” through their smartphones when they use them. The accompanying site, WhereDidYouWearIt.com, displays an interactive map showing where users checked in and allows people proud of having protected sex to share a little bit about their experience. The officials at Planned Parenthood make it clear that they are not promoting sex, or no sex, just safe sex and openness about it above all else.

From The New York Daily News:

“We hope the site promotes discussions within relationships about condoms and helps to remove perceived stigmas that some people may have about condom use. Where Did You Wear It attempts to create some fun around making responsible decisions.”

When checking in, the site asks users, “The Safe Sex Was”… The choices include “Ah-maz-ing – Rainbows exploded and mountains trembled,” to “Things can only improve from here.”

The site allows you to read other users’ check-ins and safe-sex experience. For instance, one young couple in Pennsylvania is looking forward to another surreptitious, protective intercourse experience.

The post reads, “A 20 something girl and a guy whose relationship is just for fun and have already talked about safer sex and STDs used a condom in a secret spot to prevent an unplanned pregnancy. It was great – can’t wait for round 2.”

55,000 of these condoms were distributed at colleges and universities on the west coast during National Condom Week (Feb 14-21), and so far there have been check-ins in all but two of the fifty states and on six continents.

Nobody can argue with the need to come up with creative ways to reach the social media generation, and frank talk about safe sex is conspicuously absent from public discourse. But it’s still sex — something that is ideally private and personal — does everybody need to know all of your business? Because call me old-fashioned but if I signed on and saw that my last partner had ‘checked-in’ and provided a rating for what we did together I would be less than thrilled.

What do you think?

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  • mamareese

    Look this is sex not Twitter. This is the dumbest thing ever. You’d get all kinds of teenage foolishiness on this iste. How about this be the private act it oughta be and you just do the right thing and protect yourself.

  • Tonton Michel

    If this makes using condoms cool than I am all for it, about time PP got it right.

  • mamareese

    Really, I think this is more than TMI. And just like Facebook and Twitter…this is gonna put some dummy in relationship hell. This is worse than a Tampax commerical…can anything be discreet anymore…I don’t care where and how folks are getting it in. This is like saying ok you deserve a pat on your back for doing the right thing. Ugh this is such a praise needy generation….just do the right this geez.

  • Disclosure: I used to work for Planned Parenthood and closely with the guy overseeing this project at a Planned Parenthood affiliate in Washington state.

    Since people are checking in anonymously, I don’t see where this gets to be TMI or one would see their partner checking in, revealing their privacy. Personally, I’m excited when I meet someone who is as open about discussing safe sex as I am, because it’s important and shouldn’t be whispered about. The need for safer sex is our reality today, plain and simple. The problem with a lot of STDs and unplanned pregnancies is that so many people, young and old, are afraid to even talk about these issues with parents, doctors, or the folks they’re laying down with! Any efforts to de-stigmatize the discussion, to make safer sex “cool”, is ok with me.

    Finally, if you’re private and want all of your sexual activities to remain so, just don’t use it. Same as with any other social/digital app out there. I remember once there was a Foursquare partnership with MTV that awarded a badge if you shouted that you got tested during April which is Get Yourself Tested month. A lot of people don’t want to say they got tested for anything, but for those who are cool with it, it sends a powerful message to their friends, fans, and followers on various social networks: This is normal, this is life, I did it and so should you (if you’re sexually active).