The digital space is becoming an integral part of our daily lives, especially with smartphones and internet data plans becoming more affordable. The number of people going online everyday—including people from marginalised communities—is increasingly rapidly.
Consent, however, is not so straightforward in the digital world. With instances where data can be hacked into, and with deep fake technologies making it more difficult to distinguish between what is real and what is fake, we have a situation where it is difficult to completely anticipate the kinds of risks involved, and the ways in which sexually explicit material is used.
Sex and technology link in many different ways – whether its helps overcome a disability or separation from a loved one, or is simply be a way to increase pleasure and excitement.
Neha is a proud, beaming 16-year-old. Standing on the lawns outside Delhi’s India Gate, she speaks to the camera about how she is the first female volunteer with Jharkhand Mobile Vaani– a voice-based social network for rural India – to get an opportunity to visit Delhi for a workshop. She talks about how she visits…
Our desire to connect is perhaps one of the human aspirations that both Sexuality and the Internet serve. And with the Internet we now have new ways, unthought of even twenty years ago, of connecting with each other, and even at times with ourselves, finding aspects of our selves that we did not know existed.
The promises of the Internet are, of course, highly contextual. The Internet will mean very different things to a person who has access to their own mobile phone in a city with a reliable and affordable broadband or WiFi connection, as compared to someone who does not have access to a reliable Internet connection or who is unable to go to a shop to exchange downloaded songs and clips through an SD card.
In fact, the Internet actually allows adolescents access to a wide range of information including on sexual health. A 2015 study by Marie Stopes International (an organisation that provides contraception and safe abortion services) found that the main source of information on sexual health among adolescents is the Internet.
Medical abortion is a threat to scientific authorities because it is technology easily used without the help of a medical provider. Since there is doubt that women will use the drug safely without supervision (even though they did it before and are still doing it), some think the kinder option is to remove their opportunity to fail.
A short documentary on India's menstruation man, Arunachalam Muruganantham, who wore an artificial uterus, was left by his wife for five years, and was called a pervert by the neighbours – all in his pursuit to create cheap yet effective sanitary napkins for women who cannot afford safe menstrual hygiene products.