MTV and iCondom have come together to release the iCondom iPhone app, an experiment that test to see if large numbers of youngsters will use technological resources to protect themselves from sexually transmitted diseases.
According to Mashable, with the app, users can search via GPS for the nearest place that sells condoms. Much of the information, however, will be crowdsourced. Users are encouraged to add condom-dispensing locations and to provide quick tips like if the shop is open 24 hours or if a machine is broken.
The app is part of MTV’s Staying Alive campaign, its global youth HIV awareness and prevention effort. The crowdsourced nature of the app encourages a supporting community that can hopefully remove the taboo of buying contraceptives.
iCondom is well-timed with a controversial new government health care plan that would eliminate out-of-pocket costs for women’s birth control. Condom controversy usually revolves around a condom’s ability to prevent pregnancy rather than its ability to prevent sexually transmitted diseases. The MTV campaign focuses on the latter even as it enters a climate of increased exposure and debate around sexual preventative care.
Although African Americans are only 13% of the U.S. population, according to the Office of Minority Health, they account for 48% of HIV/AIDS cases. The app is free to download via iTunes. Any profit generated through iCondom’s adverts will be split three ways between Staying Alive, the developers and Scarlett Mark, which helped create the campaign.
FrugiVoice: What do you think of a global condom distribution map? Do you think iCondom will really help prevent the spread of HIV? Sound off in the comments.