Safe Sex Goes Tech – QR Codes Appear on Condoms

By Emily Murray

By now you have probably noticed that “check-ins” have become very popular with social media users. Rarely can you sign in to Facebook without being bombarded with these status updates. While sometimes we wonder “do we really need to know you are at IHOP?” other times, seeing where a friend is on a Saturday night might give us the motivation to meet up and have fun. Many people have personalized these check-ins to say things like “my house” or “my bed,” but should we really be able to “check-in” during sex?

A new site  launched by the family planning organization Planned Parenthood has taken that idea and run with it.

Now special QR code condoms allow people to check-in when they are between the sheets. These special condoms are printed with a QR code on the wrapper that allows those with a smartphone to let all their friends now they are “doing the deed.” Sounds pretty cool right? Unless you are friends with your parents or grandparents online….TMI! (Remember if you share this with them, they could share it with you too…*shudder*).

This new campaign was recently sponsored during National Condom Week when these QR code condoms were distributed to 55,000 college students in Washington State. This is truly one of Planned Parenthood’s most clever ways to merge the concept of safer sex with the mainstream trends of social media. While the site allows you to check-in, it won’t say your exact location just the city and state. So far, since launching the campaign last week, the site has already seen check-ins from 48 states and 6 continents. Those without a special QR coded condom can actually check-in on the site if they would like to participate in the campaign and let others know they have had safe sex.

This marketing campaign plays upon the “everybody is doing it” (pun intended) mentality while showing that condom usage is wide spread in the hope of encouraging more people to practice protected sex.

Of course, like most things Planned Parenthood orchestrates, there are some organizations who are not among those praising this initiative. These groups view this as a vulgar  way of telling college students it’s okay to be sexually active and promiscuous, things which should be reserved for marriage.

If you want to “check-in,” you can visit .

What do you think? Is this campaign ingenious or offensive?