Wednesday, March 23, 2011

A Sex::Tech Experiment by Hannah Davis

I wanted to test Google to see what pops up when people search for information regarding unwanted pregnancies. This little experiment was encouraged by Sex::Tech who wanted to see how much information is correct or helpful when a person is looking for sexual information on the Internet. I typed in my search in several ways to see how that effected the results.

I first tried “unwanted pregnancy” which had a mixture of information. The first post was called How To Get Rid of Unwanted Things. On their site it talked about the types of abortions available and natural methods like pulling out, and contraception forms to keep a person from getting pregnant. Next was Planned Parenthood who looked more positively at pregnancy and advised people think about giving up their child to adoption or keeping it instead of simply aborting. On the first page there where also sites that campaigned against teen pregnancy and tried to involve teens in having safe sex. Overall this search gave adequate and informed information.

So next I tried “I'm pregnant but don’t want it”. This search came up with a lot of sites like and yahoo answers which is were a person posts a question and has others who are randomly searching the Internet answer them. These websites all had mostly personal experiences for answers that were not necessarily based in fact. Other pages assumed that the people searching were teens or young adults or unmarried which excludes a large portion of the population who could be facing an unwanted pregnancy.

Lastly, I tried to see what would come up if I wrote “oh no, I’m pregnant” and got some interesting results. Again there were a lot of sites where people posted their personal problems and listened to others responses on what to do. Near the bottom of the first page was a website called Tracts on Evangelism, the first website specifically religious I had come across in all my searches. They wanted to use a person's pregnancy as a way to earn money through selling CD's that spoke God's word on the issue. They were against abortions and seemed to state that women should keep a baby even if it was unexpected. Besides this there was nothing new that hadn't popped up in my other searches.

Overall I found multiple reliable sources on the Internet when I typed in my searches. Some where not as useful or more sketchy, but I found a lot of the information to be somewhat helpful. I think this reinforces that you always need to be careful and double check your sources because your results can vary largely based on what you Google.

Written for the Sex::Tech 2011 Blog Carnival. Sex::Tech, the leading conference on youth, sexuality, and technology, is April 1-2, 2011 in San Francisco.

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