Bad news, everyone: not all sex piracy is the good kind. While some it involves a ragtag band of sailors enjoying one another carnally, unfortunately, a far more common practice is pirating counterfeited sex toys. This is decidedly Not Good because, if there is one place an unregulated knock-off doesn't belong, it's wobbling around inside a human sex organ (please feel free to steal this line and use it in your next break-up email).
In an XBiz News report, co-founder of anti-piracy group Porn Guardian Peter Phinney says that there's been a troubling rise in "toys whose brands we knew that appeared to be knocked off and offered as genuine brand name merchandise but at drastically reduced price points," which are typically "made offshore with inferior components and packaging, but sold as first quality."
Not only is this damaging to business — Phinney says that counterfeiting has led to a decrease in sales for several companies — it's also maybe damaging for your nether-regions. According to the Daily Dot, offshore sex toy counterfeiters are not held to the same standards as American manufactures, meaning that potential unsafe chemicals can end up in your vibrator or butt plug or dragon dildo or what have you.
Most terrifying of all is the prospect of bootleg, poorly-made BDSM toys. As Phinney so chillingly puts it: "Forgive me for being blunt, but would you be interested in sticking electroshock cables up your ass or onto your privates if you knew they were made in China from sub-standard components and not UL listed for safety?" No, sir. I would not be interested in that. You have made your point quite eloquently.
As of now, Porn Guardian is working to make it "uncomfortable and [financially] unproductive" for the Sex Toy Pirates to unleash their unsafe butt-shockers, etc., upon the world. In the meantime, be very suspicious of surprisingly inexpensive name-brand sex toys, I guess.
Image via Getty.