What The Future of Sex Looks Like, According to Cindy Gallop
Cindy Gallop is a total legend in the sex world. If you’re involved in sex-tech (a term she coined, btw), you’ve probably crossed paths with the likes of this blonde bombshell. She’s the founder of MakeLoveNotPorn, a social sharing site for real-life sex videos. People make their own, real sex videos — a starkly different approach than the mainstream porn industry’s take on sex. Her goal is to make sharing real-life sex on the internet as ordinary as sharing photos of a romantic weekend away.
The project was a total accident, born from Gallop's love of men in their 20s. She says that it came from the duality of our society’s total reluctance to talk openly and honestly about sex, alongside an overexposure to hardcore pornography. Meaning, the vast majority of our sexual education comes from what we see in porn.
I actually assumed the young man she introduced me to in her kitchen was her assistant, but it’s turns out this cute guy, clad in skater shoes and sweats was a date. Yes, she’s really that cool.
When it comes to the advancements in sex and what it holds for humankind, happiness, and technology I had to ask Gallop: What is the future of sex?
The Future Of Sex Means An End To Porn’s Equation To Real Sex
Gallop’s first goal with MakeLoveNotPorn was to demystify porn and our tendency to think that what we’re seeing on mainstream porn sites is real life. “I put up on no money a tiny clunky website at makelovenotporn.com that posts the myths of hardcore porn and balances them with reality...the concept was Porn World vs Real World," she tells Bustle. "So, the concept is porn world versus reality.”
In the real world, everyone is different and has different preferences. Sex is about a partnership, not the male gaze. “This was me just writing about the porn world: all men love coming on faces, all women love cum on their faces; real world, some people like this, some people don't," she says. "You know, it's a good idea to find out before you actually spray it on them.”
The Future Of Sex Is Talking About It
There isn’t necessarily a problem with pornography itself, but the fact that all we see is porn while never talking about sex is what is problematic. Gallop says that there is a enormous need to actually talk about sex in an honest way so that sex and porn are not conflated.
"I always emphasized to people that MakeLoveNotPorn is not anti-porn because the issue is not porn. The issue is we don’t talk about sex in the real world."
“I always emphasized to people that MakeLoveNotPorn is not anti-porn because the issue is not porn," she says. "The issue is we don’t talk about sex in the real world. If we did, among a whole host of other benefits, people would bring a real-world mindset when they view what is simply artificial entertainment."
She encourages talking about sex openly and honestly on the public domain. "By that I mean, parents to kids, teachers to classrooms, to everyone and equally importantly, talk about sex openly, honestly, privately in your intimate relationship," she says.
We’re afraid to talk about sex because we’re vulnerable when we’re having it. If we talk about it, we take away everything that’s scary about it. Talking about it helps inform and educate people about sex — which will, in turn lead to better sex overall.
The Future Of Sex Is Sharing It
Gallop's goal is to have people share their sexual experiences IRL. “On Facebook, the kind of things you see from your friends is for example, ‘We are madly in love and so here we are in Paris,'" she says. "She has videos kissing on the Eiffel Tower, or on the Seine, eating on the bistro. On MakeLoveNotPorn it’s, 'We are madly in love and here is the great sex we had in our hotel room in Paris on our weekend.’ It’s the exact same deal'.”
Sharing your sex life on social media may sound pretty terrifying but, Gallop says that sharing the real sex people have is the answer to destigmatizing sex. “In sex, you find out how you’ve completely misinterpreted what someone was doing or they weren’t doing something because they were worried you’d think this about them," she says. "We miscommunicate and we don’t communicate accordingly around sex. And the important thing too is that when you make the future of sex social and highly communicative, when you destigmatize it, take the shame out and embarrassment out of it, then you just, honestly, you completely transform people because in all those emails I get [from fans], half the problem is the shame, the guilt, the embarrassment. That is half the issue. MLNP operates in the single biggest market of them all, not sex, not porn, the market of human happiness.”
The Future Of Sex Is Lifting Up Other Sex-Tech Entrepreneurs
Anyone in the sex-tech community will tell you that Gallop has had an influence on them in some way. She’s the first to acknowledge that making it as a sex-tech entrepreneur in a world that stigmatizes all things sexually related is extremely difficult. She wants to help these women, all while changing the way the world views sex.
She’s doing this by starting a sex-tech fund, even though she says she has no idea how to that. She’s just going to do it anyway, “I gave it a name, I bought URL, I registered the company," she says. "The name of my sex tech fund is derived from a quote by chairman Mao who many years ago famously said in the interest of gender equality, Women hold up half the sky. I think that is relatively unambitious so my sex tech fund is called, AllTheSky Holdings; and the derivation is deliberate because my sex tech fund will have a not exclusive but primary focus on radically innovative sex tech ventures of and by women. The most interesting things from sex tech are coming from female founders.”
At the end of the day, Gallop knows that we run the world. “We live in a world where the default setting is always male. And by the way, I say to men all the time, 'men, you have no idea how much happier you would be living and working in a world where it’s 50-50, equally informed and influenced by women as much as men'.”
And that’s a wrap.