A Sydney sex shop owner has revealed how an idea created to help her store survive lockdown has turned into a money-maker, with the shop citing doubled revenues.
The idea was born during Australia's total lockdown of non-essential shops. Eloise
Monaghan, the founder of Honey Birdette, explained:
I was frightened for my brand but it made us think, 'right, what can we do?'
So we did virtual appointments, Zoom rooms, Insta rooms, virtual
erotic book readings -- but private appointments were the COVID option that really emerged as a banger.
Honey Birdette revealed it doubled its revenue by closing its doors to the public and opening up for private shopping experiences.
Customers are then given a glass of champagne on arrival and the privacy to explore everything the label has to offer, with the limited number of guests ensuring COVID-Safe practices are upheld.
The idea proved so popular, Honey Birdette voluntarily
closed the doors of a store to the public altogether, only accepting private bookings made through the brand's website.
In the next few months a new appointment-only store will open and it's only the beginning for the global brand, with plans to roll
it out in other cities and countries.
The UK Government has changed the law to dictate that couples in an established relationship are now banned from intimate meetings (unless they live together or are in a support bubble). Previous incarnations of coronavirus restrictions offered
exemptions fro people in an established relationship but these have been dropped from rules imposed on areas classed as high or very high risk areas (applying to about half of the people in England).
Downing Street has confirmed that couples living
apart in areas under these tougher restrictions can only meet outdoors. And, if the prospect of outdoor-only encounters during the bitter winter months was not grim enough, Boris Johnson's official spokesman clarified that they are not even meant to
touch each other under social distancing rules.
Asked if couples living apart in tier 2 areas can see each other indoors, the prime minister's official spokesman said on Friday:
The rules on household mixing in tier 2,
I think, set out that you should mix with your own household only unless you've formed a support bubble, and that obviously does apply to some couples.
The prime minister's spokesman clarified that the restrictions were set out in
law. Asked why an exemption for established relationships was not written into the law for those in tiers 2 and 3, Johnson's spokesman added:
Because the purpose of the measures we've put in place is to break the chain
of transmission between households, and the scientific advice is that there is greatest transmission of the virus indoors.
I don't suppose the Government will be publishing daily statistics about compliance with such miserable and
A much harassed strip club which closed in March due to coronavirus restrictions has decided not to apply to renew its licence.
Spearmint Rhino, which has been on Brown Street in Sheffield for 18 years, has surrendered its sexual entertainment venue
licence and handed over its alcohol licence to another operator.
The club recently won a high-profile battle to renew the licence for a six-month period last September after a campaign by women's equality campaigners. But Sheffield City Council
said the club has now withdrawn its latest application.
In the summer, the club dropped a privacy case against feminist campaigners who commissioned non consensual and secret filming of dancers at work.
Some strip club dancers, who have not
worked since March, have said the industry has been hit hard by coronavirus pandemic restrictions. So presumably much of this latest decision was down to economic reality rather than more political issues.
La Chambre is a very well known swinger's club in Sheffield. It has announced that after a year of coronavirus lockdown it is closing down at the current venue but hopes to find somewhere else in the future. A Facebook post explains:
As most clubs like ours have had to close due to COVID, it has proven to be a difficult time for us all and sadly we are starting to see some clubs making the awful decision to close their doors for ever.
We have been reviewing our own club a long with government guideline to see what we can do ourselves, we have thought about every possible way that we can think of to get back up and running but each time we hit hurdle after hurdle that prevents it. So
firstly we would like to announce that Marie and Barry, (The Oldest Swingers in Town) are hanging up their swinging shoes, whips and chains and slipping into the wonderful world of retirement.
We have taken a long hard look at La
Chambre and like most clubs it make financial sense to remain closed as we lose less money than we would if we opened. We don't see the point in paying for something that we are not using, so have decided not to renew our lease on our current building
while we are unable to open, which will continue for the next 6 months under the current government guide lines.
We are going to use this time to look for a new build that we feel will be more suitable and give us more options to
open and also give us a chance to bring La Chambre a whole new lease of life.
A security flaw in a hi-tech chastity belt for men meant the device could be locked remotely by hackers. The flaw also made it possible for hackers to remotely lock all the global devices simultaneously.
A team of UK security professionals flagged
the bug to Qiui, the Chinese developers of the app that controls the internet-linked sheath called the Cellmate Chastity Cage.
The developers have now fixed the bug in the sex toy's app and have also published a manual workaround, which will be
useful for anyone with the old version of the app still at risk of getting stuck.
The Cellmate Chastity Cage is sold online for about $190. Tech-researchers Pen Test Partners believe about 40,000 of the devices have been sold.
YouTube of porn: longitudinal measurement, analysis, and characterization of a large porn streaming service
A University of Auckland study by Cameron Wong, Yo-Der Song & Aniket Mahanti.
Video content on user-generated content services has redefined entertainment and business on the Internet. Adult video streaming services have embraced this evolution to form YouTube style porn sites which combine the features
of video hosting websites and online social media services.
This paper presents a comprehensive measurement study of one of the most popular new-age porn websites with social networking features, xHamster. Using active
measurements, we have obtained metadata on almost 4 million unique videos that span the lifetime of xHamster from 2007 to 2018.
An analysis of this corpus allowed us to characterize the service and gain insights into the key
players of the website including the website owners, video uploaders, and the viewers. By studying the characteristics of videos such as views, duration, the number of uploads, tags, ratings and comments, we give an overview of xHamster's current state,
compare it to traditional and adult streaming services, and find the niche that xHamster occupies as an amateur content focused service.
We find that there are significant differences between adult streaming services and
traditional streaming services. The injection rate of new videos is lower but the website does not need a large number of new uploads as long as the front page is constantly refreshed. The length of an average adult video is shorter than that of the
average video on traditional streaming services, and we find that there is minimal engagement with ratings and comments. Video tags are actively used to organize and filter through content, and we observe that the more tags a video has, the more views it
is likely to obtain.
The porn trade magazine AVN comments further about the research:
YouTube, according to the internet data site Alexa.com , is the second-most trafficked website in the world. The porn tube site xHamster
ranks 111th . But content creators looking for engagement are much better off uploading porn to xHamster than posting a mainstream video on YouTube.
The study found that xHamster contains only a small fraction of the number of
videos on YouTube -- about four million compared to YouTube's five billion videos. In addition, while xHamster users uploaded an average of 2,000 videos per 24-hour period, YouTube receives 500 hours of video uploads every minute.
But xHamster can get by with much less content, because viewers are hungrier for porn than they are for the variety of offerings on YouTube. According to the University of Auckland findings, an average YouTube video will be viewed 5,500 times. But an
xHamster video receives an average of 68,000 views.
The study also showed that despite attempts around the world to ban it, porn only continues to grow in popularity. According to the study, between 2013 and 2017, the number of
videos uploaded to xHamster increased by a factor of three.