May 30

Yes or No to Sex – Is a Consent App a Good Answer?

“On this I know my risks and they are sky-high. Are you okay with it or not?”
Janna frowned at him, then half smiled. “All right fine. The answer is yes,yes, you can record me if you want. I am one hundred percent okay with it.”
Hagen picked up his com and pointed the device towards her mouth. “Can you repeat your consent, please?”
“Seriously?”
“It was your idea. And a voice modulator app will be able to detect whether you’re under duress when you speak. I always forget I have it.”
Janna looked at the com with disdain. “Did you make Kadie do this?” Janna asked emphasizing the Commander’s name.
Hagen feigned shock. “Uhhh…how dare you. That’s so inappropriate and totally unanswerable.”
“So, no.”
“No comment. Where were we again? Oh yeah, the CYA part.” He held up the com again.
Janna looked at him, then at the com. “Fine,” she said reaching out, and pulling his hand, holding the com, closer to her mouth. Hagen touched an icon, then Janna clearly stated, “Under no threat or duress, I, Janna Marric am saying yes, I am one hundred percent okay with having sex with Hagen Writstone.”
Hagen grinned as he touched the icon again. “Thank you,” he said pulling her into his arms.

– from The Unbroken Line

Consent App screenshotThe latest affirmative consent app called Yes to Sex has come out with a college campus version to be tailored to a school’s requirements. It is not as sophisticated as the app on the com (smartphone) described above in the outtake from the technothriller The Unbroken Line, but it’s another step towards using technology to fight crime and gather digital evidence. In the novel, you can state your consent and the app uses a voice modulation feature to determine if you’re under duress. In today’s technology, the app only goes as far as making the recording.

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