Sex? There’s an app for that, at least reporting on it

Indiana University has released the Kinsey Reporter, an app for collecting and reporting anonymous data about sexual acts and other intimate behaviors.

The project, according to a news release, allows people to use free applications available for Apple and Android devices to “not only report on sexual behavior and experiences, but also to share, explore and visualize the accumulated data.”

Julia Heiman, director of the famed Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender and Reproduction, said, “People are natural observers. It's part of being social and using mobile apps is an excellent way to involve citizen scientists. We expect to get new insights into sexuality and relationships today. What do people notice, what are they involved in, and what can they relate to us about their lives and their communities?”

The app is a joint project of the Kinsey institute, the Center for Complex Networks and Systems Research at Indiana University’s School of Informatics and Computing and the Pervasive Technology Institute.

CNetS director Filippo Menczer said, “This new platform will allow us to explore issues that have been challenging to study until now, such as the prevalence of unreported sexual violence in different parts of the world, or the correlation between various sexual practices like condom use, for example, and the cultural, political, religious or health contexts in particular geographical areas. These were some of our initial motivations for the project.”

Users can download the app now and begin sharing information about sexual activity, public displays of affection, flirting, unwanted experiences and birth control use.

Developers say users will not be identified, but the time and general location – city or state or country – of their posts will be collected.

On the Web: Apple iOS and Android app stores, the Kinsey Reporter website, Twitter feed and a Facebook page.

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