"Dirty jokes" found in Anne Frank's diary

There was more to Anne Frank's diary than we once thought. Two pages, which were previously covered in a brown masking paper, have been revealed by researchers at Dutch museums. The pages contained "four risque jokes and candid explanations of sex, contraception and prostitution" written by the Jewish teen, according to The Guardian.

The Anne Frank Museum, the Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies and the Huygens Institute for the History of the Netherlands used digital technology to show the writing on the pages.

They photographed the pages, backlit by a flash, and then used image-processing software to decipher the words, which were hard read because they were jumbled up with the writing on the reverse sides of the pages.

In the passage on sex, Anne described how a young woman gets her period around 14, saying that it is “a sign that she is ripe to have relations with a man but one doesn’t do that of course before one is married”.

On prostitution, she wrote: “All men, if they are normal, go with women, women like that accost them on the street and then they go together. In Paris they have big houses for that. Papa has been there.”

Anne wrote her diary while she and her family hid for more than two years. The family was provided with food and other essentials by a close-knit group of helpers, until 4 August 1944 when they were discovered and ultimately deported to Auschwitz.

Only Anne’s father, Otto Frank, survived the war.

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Kickstarting "Drawn to Sex": Oh Joy Sex Toy's sex-ed book

A couple months back, I was delighted to learn that the good, good people at Oh Joy Sex Toy were launching a sex-ed book aimed at explaining the basics, ins, outs, whats and wherefores of sex "for those looking to learn about sex and wince at our bad dad jokes." Read the rest

The UK's surveillance regulator changed names and dropped its domain, which is now squatted by a premature ejaculation scammer

The Interception of Communications Commissioner was a watchdog created by the UK government to produce annual reports on the government's use of its surveillance powers; in September 2017 that function was folded into the Investigatory Powers Commissioner Office (IPCO) as part of the Snoopers Charter, and the UK government let the iocco-uk.info domain lapse. Read the rest

Emotional labor watch: "Closers" flirt on behalf of men who use Tinder

Closers are paid $1.45/session to log into (usually) men's dating-app accounts and flirt with the women in their queue for 10 minute stretches, as part of a gig-economy company called Vida (Virtual Dating Assistants). Read the rest

The upside of big tech is Russia vs Telegram, but the downside is Cloudflare vs SESTA

Yesterday, I wrote about the way that tech-sector concentration was making it nearly impossible for Russia to block the encrypted messaging service Telegram: because Telegram can serve its traffic through giant cloud providers like Amazon, Russia can only block Telegram by blocking everyone else who uses Amazon. Read the rest

New York judge admits to repeatedly breaking into young woman's home to steal her dirty underwear

Suffolk County District Judge Robert Cicale is facing up to 15 years in prison after he was caught breaking into the home of a neighbor and stealing a 23-year-old woman's dirty underwear; the judge says he was gripped by an "urge," and his lawyer assured the press that his client's "reputation throughout the court is stellar. Every judge, every lawyer respects him." Read the rest

The business-logic of Silicon Valley means that it can only make creepy, surveillant, pointless "smart" sex toys

People who buy sex toys generally want "high-quality, ergonomically designed toys that are intuitive to use," but Silicon Valley keeps delivering "innovative" and commercially unsuccessful sex toys whose selling-points are their "flashy apps and connectivity." Read the rest

Once-a-day birth control pills for men are one step closer to being a thing

I'm getting a vasectomy this summer. I'm 42 years old and neither I nor my wife want kids. It's time--at least for me. I know that going under the knife isn't the right choice for a lot of guys. The good news is that, according to Gizmodo, there's been a promising development in the area of male birth control.

It seems that research teams at UCLA and the University of Washington may have come up with a drug that's just as effective as the pills that many women have been popping on a daily basis for years. The drug compound, called dimethandrolone undecanoate (DMAU) could allow men to take responsibility for themselves and their partners beyond what a condom can offer:

Researchers gave DMAU to a hundred healthy adult volunteers from the ages of 18 to 50. Volunteers were given one of three varying doses of DMAU, and in one of two different formulations, in a capsule with either castor oil or powder. Five volunteers from each dosing group were randomized to receive a control placebo as well. The trial lasted for about a month, with each volunteer being told to take a daily pill with food. Eighty-three men finished the entire regimen.

By experiment’s end, the volunteers who took DMAU experienced a drop in their levels of testosterone and two other hormones involved in producing sperm, which was starkest in those who took the highest dose.

Best of all, those involved in the DMAU study suffered no adverse effects--at least in the short-term. Read the rest

Pounded in the Butt by My Own Podcast: Chuck Tingle comes to your earbuds

The good folks from Night Vale have launched Pounded in the Butt By My Own Podcast, a new audio treat in which guest-readers read the extremely NSFW and utterly delightful erotic fiction of Chuck Tingle (previously). Read the rest

The issue of sex doll use is blowing up in Zambia

Loneliness. Fear of catching HIV. Kink. No matter the reason for why someone might want to hump a sex doll, the Zambian government is against it. In fact, Zambia's politicians are so horny to put a stop to the import and use of such sex toys that it's become a top shelf political issue.

Zambia's government has always taken a hard line against anything that rubs up against their conservative christian sensibilities. Homosexuality, for example, is punishable with up to 14 years in prison. Law enforcement in the African nation is quick to clamp down on anyone who might dare to step over the line of its ethical norms. As such, you won't find any shops selling sex toys, at least not out in the open. Most of the hardware designed to turn reproductive bits into an amusement park have to be bought online before being discreetly imported into the country.

The logic for keeping adult toys and plastic pleasure partners out of the nation comes from the Bible, according to Godfridah Sumaili. She's Zambia's head of its recently created, totally-not-something-out-of-an-Orwell-novel Ministry of National Guidance and Religious Affairs:

"Being a Christian nation, obviously we are anchored in Christian principles and one of the values is morality and ethics... The use of sex dolls is definitely in contradiction to our natural heritage and our principles. The law actually forbids anybody to trade (in) and to use such objects -- and so this is why we are saying for Zambians that this is a very unnatural thing."

It's always great to see a nation using religious dogma to control how its citizens pleasure themselves or who they love to keep them scared and in line. Read the rest

Rhode Island proposes blocking all online porn and charging $20 to unblock it

Rhode Island Democratic state Senators Frank Ciccone (@senatorciccone) and Hanna Gallo (@hannagallo27) have proposed grandstanding, unworkable legislation, "Relating to Public Utilities and Carriers—Internet Digital Blocking" which would mandate the state's ISPs to identify all the pornography on the internet, and then block it for all Rhode Islanders, unless those Rhode Islanders specifically requested their porn to be unblocked and paid $20 for the privilege. Read the rest

Oh Joy Sex Toy is doing a sex-ed book!

The amazing sex-toy review webcomic Oh Joy Sex Toy (previously) enlivens its weekly toons with sex advice and education; they've just announced that their next collection will be Drawn to Sex, the first in a new series of books "for those looking to learn about sex and wince at our bad dad jokes." There'll be a kickstarter soon! Read the rest

China sets up anonymous snitch-line to report strippers at funerals

The Chinese Minister of Culture has launched a campaign in Henan, Anhui, Jiangsu and Hebei provinces to end the practice of hiring strippers to draw crowds to funerals -- these crowds are seen as a mark of respect and status for the departed that epitomizes the virtue of "filial piety," regardless of how they are brought in. Read the rest

Deepfakes that hurt people are already illegal, so let's stop trying to rush out ill-considered legislation

Deepfakes -- videos with incredibly realistic faceswapping, created with machine learning techniques -- are creepy as hell, except when they're not (then they're a form of incredibly expressive creativity with implications for both storytelling and political speech). Read the rest

Double clitorises, spiked penises, and other reptilian reproductive parts

Reptiles have unusual reproductive equipment. For example, female snakes and lizards have two clitorises. Meanwhile, the male tuatara has no penis. "The male simply mounts the female and places the opening of his cloaca—-the cavity where the intestinal, genital, and urinary tracts meet in reptiles—-over hers," writes Tina Deines in a National Geographic article. From Nat Geo:

The hemipenes(double penis) of lizards and snakes sport tiny spikes and hooks.

Scientists have a few ideas about why hemipenes exhibit this sort of ornamentation. According to one hypothesis, male and female genital form has adapted so that mating can occur only between a male and female of the same species. The genitals of males and females of the same species fit together, and the spikes and hooks could help the male keep his hemipenis in place during mating.

One study found that those spikes and hooks may also increase the duration of copulation, thereby increasing mating success.

“I would stress that the female genitalia need to be studied in order to fully understand the function of elaboration of the male genitalia,” says (University of Queensland zoologist Christopher) Friesen.

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Reddit shuts down Deepfakes subreddit, home to faceswapped pornography (and some other stuff)

Reddit has shut down /r/deepfakes, the subreddit where people collaborate to produce incredibly disturbing faceswapped pornography that uses machine-learning to put the faces of famous people who aren't pornography performers onto the bodies of people having sex in pornographic videos. Read the rest

The Internet of Connected Sex Toys is every bit as horrifyingly insecure and poorly thought out as you imagine

The rush to put networked sensors and controllers into sex toys is grounded in foolish, convenient untruths, like the idea that the incredibly sensitive data generated by these systems can be anonymized and then analyzed for insights without exposing users to risk. Read the rest

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