Sex toys that spy? Manufacturer settles lawsuit

First microwaves, now vibrators.

The manufacturer of a “smart vibrator” agreed to pay customers $3.2 million after a lawsuit was filed that alleged the sex toy tracked the owners’ use without their knowledge.

We-Vibe agreed to pay $3.2 million to settle the class-action lawsuit filed in Illinois federal court.  The vibrators advertised that it would allow users to “turn on your lover” via a Bluetooth connection, according to The New York Times.

“The usage information collected by Standard Innovation through We-Connect is extraordinarily intimate and private,” according to court documents from the plaintiffs.  The lead plaintiff said she bought a $130 We-Vibe Rave and downloaded the app but was never warned her use would be tallied, The Chicago Tribune reported.

Among problems with the device, reported in The Guardian, the app that controls the vibrator had security and privacy vulnerabilities, allowing anyone with a bluetooth range to seize control of the device.

Data that was sent back to We-Vibe’s owner – Standard Innovation – included the temperature and intensity of the device.

Standard Innovation said in a statement it takes customer privacy and data security seriously.

“We have enhanced our privacy notice, increased app security, provided customers [with] more choice in the data they share, and we continue to work with leading privacy and security experts to enhance the app.

Now if we can just get President Trump’s counselor Kellyanne Conway to again explain to us about those microwaves.

CDC: Sperm donated in South Florida may contain Zika

Zika not only can be transmitted through the bite of the Aedes mosquito, the birth-defect causing virus can be transmitted through sex, as well.

So the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention have issued a warning for men in Palm Beach County and two others not to donate sperm because of the risk of spreading the disease, according to a story by The Associated Press.

The guidance applies also to Broward and Miami-Dade, the later the only place in Florida where there’s proof the virus was spread by mosquitos. Most cases diagnosed in Florida have been of those who contracted the disease by traveling to infected zones in the Caribbean or South America.

“When semen is donated it can be stored frozen for periods of time. It does not necessarily inactivate Zika, so it could be stored in tissue banks, used subsequently and people should be made aware,” Dr. Peter Marks, director of the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, told CNN. 

He said women “might want to use these donations from other sources.”

The CDC advisory is mostly precautionary.  There have been no cases of pregnant women being infected by Zika through a sperm donation. The risk is considered low but the consequences are severe. Infection during pregnancy can lead to severe brain-related birth defects

“Now we understand more than we did months ago is that evidence of the Zika virus is present in semen for up to three months after a man is infected and people may not have accurately recalled potential exposure [to the virus] especially if in a local area,” said Dr. Matthew Kuehnert, who is part of the CDC Zika emergency response team and director of the CDC office of blood, organ and other tissue safety.

He was quoted in the story on the sperm alert for CNN.

The FDA, which regulates sperm donations, said the 12 donor banks in South Florida should consider the CDC’s new advice discouraging donations from men in the three South Florida counties an FDA spokeswoman said.

The last case of mosquito transmission of Zika in Florida was in December. But officials expect another outbreak this summer.  There were 221 people who contracted got Zika from mosquitoes in the continental U.S. last year, most in the Miami area. There were six cases in Texas.

Not getting any? FAU study finds American sex habits at all-time low

Not getting any? Join the club.

A new study co-authored by researchers at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton found Americans in all age groups are less sexually active than ever.

Viagra? Hook-up apps? The reported new era of free love seems to have been greatly exaggerated.

Researchers from FAU along with those from San Diego State University and Widener University in Pennsylvania culled data from the General Social Survey of 26,620 American adults from 1989 to 2014. They published their results Tuesday in the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior.

What could she be whispering? According to a new FAU study, most likely it is “Not tonight, I have a headache.” (Photo courtesy of Creative Commons)

Those particular archives sound like some interesting reading.

But anyway, when it comes to making whoopee, there was only bad news with results showing a drop in sexual activity along gender, race, region, work status and education level.

And what about that “marriage advantage?” That no longer holds true as the rate of sexual activity also fell among those who are married or living with partners. The group went from 73 trysts a year in 1990 to 55 in 2014. Single people said they were having more sex a year with an average of 59.

But those who are married don’t need a study to tell them what they already know.

Not surprisingly sexual activity declined with age. People in their 20s reported having sex about 80 times a year, while people 65-years and older reported hooking up about 20 times annually – which is still pretty impressive.

Ryne Sherman, associate professor of psychology at FAU, says maybe people are having less sex these days because they are just simply unhappier. Ouch!

So if we compare generations, who is the friskiest? Researchers say it was those born in the 1930s, known as the Silent Generation. And who are the most chaste? You guessed it. The millennials.

The decline apparently, according to the study, is not associated with hours worked or pornography use either.

The study didn’t look into the popularity of Netflix. Admit it, you rather be watching the “Santa Clarita Diet” than making love.

Overall, two factors seem to be driving declines in sexual frequency.

Here’s Ryne Sherman, an associate professor of psychology at FAU and co-author of the study, delineating the act of love into the least romantic terms imaginable.

“First, an increase in the percentage of people who are unpartnered, which is interesting considering the availability of the Internet and Tinder age; and second, a decrease in sexual frequency among those who are partnered,” said Ryne Sherman, associate professor of psychology at FAU.

“Honey, I was just wondering if … if … if you would like to watch the new episode of “Game of Thrones?” (Creative Commons)
 Maybe, our love-making has fallen because we are more likely to be living alone.

In 1986, 66 percent of American adults had a partner at home, but by 2014 those living with a partner was only 59 percent.

“While we don’t know for certain, we suspect that there are a number of factors that are contributing to this decline including putting off parenthood and parenting later in life, as well as the need for two-income families to make ends meet which can lead to fatigue,” said Sherman.

Oh yes, and there is this little silver lining:

“Also, people are generally less happy now and this may impact their overall satisfaction with their relationships or their marriage,” Sherman said.

Thanks, Sherm. Any other nuggets to cheer up us overworked, sex-deprived, depressed masses in loveless marriages?

The FAU study doesn’t answer this question, however:

Who are these people who tabulate how many times a year they have intercourse? What are they doing, putting notches on their bedpost? Is there a phone app? If not, should we invent one? Curious minds want to know, Sherm. We want to know.

Is it a wig? Secrets revealed about the president’s hair

It doesn’t matter that he is a billionaire whose name adorns buildings around the world.

It doesn’t matter that he staged one of the great electoral upsets in the history of the United States.

It doesn’t matter that political turmoil that is boiling over in Washington or that the protests are growing.

For President Donald Trump, it always comes down to the hair. 

Is it a wig? Did he have a scalp reduction or some other cosmetic surgery?  What about hair replacement?

Well, some of those answers came Thursday when Mr. Trump’s longtime physician, Dr. Harold N. Bornstein, said in a series of recent interviews with the New York Times that the president uses the medication finasteride — sometimes marketed as Propecia — to maintain his famous mane.

hair
Dr. Alan. J. Bauman, founder of Bauman Medical in Boca Raton, a board-certified hair restoration specialist.

“It’s certainly not a wig,” said  Dr. Alan. J. Bauman,  founder of Bauman Medical in Boca Raton, a board-certified hair restoration specialist.

The last time Trump’s hair was headline news was when talk show host Jimmy Fallon ruffled the candidate’s locks on national television during the campaign. Fallon was universally derided for asking Trump about the trivial rather than serious questions.

Yet, here is the nation once again talking about Donald Trump’s hair. Imagine asking the president if he suffers from some of the medication’s side effects, including erectile dysfunction.

“I’m not surprised the doctor released the information that he is on finasteride,” Bauman said. “The medication protects his hair and hair is important to him – as it is to many men.”

Finasteride was developed as a prostate drug, but it was soon discovered that it helped men retain their hair and beat back male pattern hair loss.  It also helps weaker hair grow stronger, but if the follicle is dead, then it’s time for some hair plugs.

The medication blocks a conversion of a hormone into DHT, the culprit of hair loss.

Bauman said about 2 to 3 percent of men who use finasteride experience some mild sexual side effects, decreased libido and mild erectile dysfunction.

 

Sex and Millennials: New FAU study makes surprising finding

With the plethora of social hookup apps and sexually transmitted diseases on the rise, some social scientists have proffered the Millennial generation ushered in a new era of free love.

But a new Florida Atlantic University study blows up that stereotype. In fact, Millennial appear to be as prudish as their great-grandparents.

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Let’s just snuggle. New study finds Millennial are not the hook-up generation – in fact, quite the contrary.

The Boca Raton-based college found many Americans born in the 1990s in particular, are forgoing sex during young adulthood.

The FAU study, just published in the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior, contradicts the widespread stereotype that Millennial are the “hookup” generation that use popular dating apps like Tinder and Grindr.

Millennials are no more promiscuous than their predecessors and are less likely to be having sex than young adults were 30 years ago, according to a survey of almost 27,000 people.

The generation did not report more sexual partners after the age of 18 than GenX’ers born in the late 1960s. In fact, 15 percent of 20- to 24-year-old Americans had no sexual partners since turning 18.

Sherman,Ryne
FAU Associate Professor Ryne Sherman.

The only other generation that showed a higher rate of sexual inactivity were those born in the 1920s, said Ryne Sherman,, co-author of the study and associate professor of psychology in the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science at FAU.

“Many of the differences between the groups in the recent generations were also significant,” said Sherman. “For example, women were more likely to be sexually inactive compared to men, Whites more than Blacks, those who did not attend college more than those who did, and in the East more than the West.”

So why are Millennials not doing the deed?

For one, as the Pew Research Center observed, nearly one-third of today’s young adults are still living at home, largely because of economic factors like lower wages and social ones, like delayed age of first marriage.

“With more [millennials] living with their parents even post-recession, young adults may have fewer opportunities to have sex,” according to a story in The Daily Beast.