Research & Insights

By Brendan O'Connor, August 12, 2008

Survey: Crowdsourcing Sex

On this blog we’ve used crowdsourcing techniques to study media bias, linguistics of color, social perceptions, information retrieval, etc.

But this is thinking small. The ability to quickly and easily collect data from thousands of people on the Web should allow us to study a huge swath of human behavior. Therefore, the next obvious topic is… human sexuality 🙂 Here are two important questions many of us would like to know the answers to:

  • Where do women enjoy being touched?
  • Where do men enjoy being touched?

The Internet has many opinions on these questions. But wouldn’t it be nice to have a concise statistical-visual answer?

We’re on the job! With visualization artists Fernanda Viegas and Martin Wattenberg, we’ve pinpointed thousands of locations on a photograph of a naked body and asked respondents how much they like to touch, or would like to be touched, at that spot. (Fernanda and Martin are working on an art project on this theme, to be unveiled next week).

Are there places that men want to touch but where women do not want to be touched? Vice versa? Soon the world will know.

What do you think the results will look like? We will be publishing the results next Monday, so follow this blog for updates!

Brendan