Sexual misinformation on the web? I’m shocked

Via Feministing

Be prepared to be amazed. It turns out that many of the websites offering information about sexual health have wrong information. According to a Stanford School of Medicine’s press release, even some highly trusted sites like WebMD have inaccurate info about things like birth control, sexually transmitted diseases and Pap exams.

In all fairness, a lot of the information changes quickly. New research comes out all the time, state laws change, and some sites simply don’t have the ability to keep up to date. I suspect that some sites end up with out of date info because they prioritize updating other pages instead of their sexual health pages and it’s not clear from the press release whether the pages they reviewed were correct at some point, or whether they were wrong from the get-go.

Nevertheless, it highlights the fact that when it comes to getting accurate sexual health information, the best webpages aren’t always the first ones that Google points you to. For the best info, go to Go Ask Alice, the Center for Young Women’s Health, TeensHealth,and Teen Wire. Wikipedia, not so much.

The Stanford team that investigated this didn’t look at pages offering information on sexual pleasure, or how to have sex, or such, and there’s just as much wrong information on those topics as there is on sexual health. Remember- just because someone puts it on a webpage doesn’t mean it’s true. If you want the best info, make sure the writer has some training. OK, I have a pet peeve about the number of “sexperts” who don’t really know much about sex. But that doesn’t mean that I’m wrong.

Dr. Charlie Glickman

Charlie Glickman is the Education Program Manager at Good Vibrations. He also writes, blogs, teaches workshops and university courses, presents at conferences, and trains sexuality educators. He’s certified by the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists, and loves geeking out about sex, relationships, sex-positivity, love and shame, communities of erotic affiliation, and sexual practices and techniques of all varieties. Follow him online, on Twitter at @charlieglickman, or on Facebook.

You may also like...