Do Consent Apps Really Work? Here's Why It Doesn’t Matter

Swipe right for enthusiastic consent.

Have you ever thought about introducing an app into your foreplay? Because, yeah, that's a thing.

Apps like We-Consent and the much discussed Good2Go offer a way for you to keep a little reminder of affirmative and enthusiastic consent in the back of your mind and close to your heart (right next to Tinder and Candy Crush.)

We talked to the Michael Lissak, Executive Director of the Institute for the Study of Coherence and Emergence (ISCE), who designed the We-Consent app. Pretty much immediately, he made it clear that it's not really about the app at all. "It’s not the use of any app, it’s having the discussions that matters," Lissack said. "What I care about is that young people talk about what their doing. If we can get the kids to talk -- that’s the victory."

Although the We-Consent app -- included in a suite of other consent/rejection-related apps with a five dollar ISCE membership -- offers the ability to record a video confirmation of themselves and their partners consenting to have sex and saves a record of their affirmative consent. If the partner doesn't say "yes," the app destroys the videos and tells them to try again. While it seems a little robotic and, frankly, unsexy, when put in those terms -- it's pretty far from it.

“Young people sort of do things in silence, then they have the activity [the sex] and then maybe a small percentage may talk about it later,” Lissack said “The idea that you do [sexual] things based off weird silent body language, it’s normal to the 20 percent. But I think it’d be better to spend some time figuring out who were you were supposed to do something with before you discover the hard way that you’ve made a terrible mistake."

With affirmative and enthusiastic consent policies and laws cropping up across the country, it's important to realize that they aren't about taking the fun or spontaneity out of your sex life --- it's not like you're pulling out paperwork, asking for signatures and initials. All it means is that the law expects you to make sure that the person you're having sex with wants to have sex with you. It's about starting to really communicate and making the whole "consent conversation" a no-brainer part of every person's sex life.

Because look: If your partner is not okay with or consenting to sex or sexual acts, you are hurting them. That's sexual assault and, assuming you care about other people, not something you want to risk. If you want to have sex (let alone good sex) you need to make sure you're giving a f--k about your partner and their well-being. That's the only way to keep your sex life sexy.

For more information about consent and sex, visit It's Your Sex Life.

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