Consent can be an uncomfortable subject, an often-complex and personal form of negotiation that people rarely get a chance to practice outside the moments that precede sexual encounters. Allison Cole, Jessica Rose Marcotte and Zachary Miller of Tweed Couch Games want to help change that with In Tune, an interactive experience that asks people to "negotiate and communicate their own physical boundaries with a partner using skin-to-skin contact as the main controller of the game."
Players form teams of two with someone they trust and don "consent bracelets" that register skin contact. During the game, they're presented with a series of two-person poses that involve varying levels of touching, and must talk to their partner about what which ones they want to emulate, and which ones they want to skip.
Consent is never implicit, and can never be given or taken by only one person. Saying yes to one pose or embrace doesn't carry over to the next one, just like consent doesn't carry over between different sex acts and encounters. It's worth checking out the rules of play for In Tune, which are useful not only for the purposes of the game, but also life:
Remember: Never touch someone without their consistent, enthusiastic and freely given consent.
Consent is not a static or stagnant thing; it is a continuing negotiation of comfort levels and boundaries.
Consent is not a single action; it is a complicated continuation of actions.
Consent can evolve, can be revoked and can never be taken from you.
In Tune, which recently appeared at the Indiecade East gaming conference, offers participants a valuable framework for consent—something that both sex education programs and popular media ideas about romance tend to ignore—and an opportunity to practice it in a safe environment with structured rules. Remember: Even when people understand the idea of consent, that doesn't mean they know how to negotiate the process of giving and asking for it with ease or grace. Practice makes perfect.
“Coca-Cola: Blade Roller,” directed by David Fincher in 1993. (via ObscureMedia)
The Offworld Collection, presenting the very best features and essays from Offworld, is finally available to buy directly from Campo Santo for $40. I had the pleasure of designing and illustrating this splendid 250-page hardcover volume, but it’s the excellent writing, edited by Leigh Alexander and Laura Hudson, that makes it an essential buy. You […]
Zoya Street, curator of Critical Distance, offers slow reflections on the fast-paced world of digital play…
You don’t need to be a climate scientist in order to know that the Earth is in serious trouble, but the good news is that you also don’t need to necessarily make any drastic changes to your lifestyle in order to do your part to help. This nOcean Wearable Reusable Silicone Straw will help you […]
When it comes to conquering that resolution list and hitting all of your goals in 2020, nothing is more important than getting a great night’s sleep every night so you can wake up feeling refreshed and extra productive. The CarbonIce: 7-in-1 Bacteria Protection & Cooling Pillow will help you do just that, and right now […]
It’s no secret that business leaders and project managers require a certain set of skills in order to outpace the competition and increase the overall efficiency of their company or team. The Lean Six Sigma Expert Training Bundle will take your managerial skills to the next level through training that will help you earn some […]