ATLANTA, GA — The only unconference to open with a feminist pole-dance lesson, Sex 2.0 brought close to a hundred new-media sex nerds to Atlanta this weekend. The sessions dealt with how to get what you want on social dating sites, find people to swing with, and how to blog about your sexcapades while managing your reputation and privacy online. Daytime panels segued from theory to practice: strip clubs, sex parties and hookups. Here's what you can learn about sex from people who write about it for a living — especially the bits you'll never find field-tested in "sex" advice columns:
- Show, don't tell At the door, Sex 2.0 attendees were required to mark their name badges with a color-coded sticker announcing whether they wanted to be photographed or filmed: red for "no," green for "yes," and yellow for "ask first." Why don't we do this all the time? Blogging about your sex partners without their knowledge is a recipe for disaster.
- If you're going to be a Twitter slut, might as well not make it metaphorical Sex 2.0 attendees couldn't resist Twittering mid-conversation — and mid-sex party and mid-fuck. Organizer Amber Rhea estimates that attendees made over a thousand Twitter updates over the weekend, including Ellie Lumpesse, a blogger and phone sex operator, who Twittered from the stage as she competed for the title of Best Boobs at a postconference swinger event.
- Own your online lack of reputation Anyone who gets sexual online runs the risk of being outed. We could obsess on controlling every facet of our online identity and activities, but what about a "more is more" approach? Internet whore and activist Kimberlee Cline, in a session on "Creating the sex commons," took up the example of forcibly retired escort Ashley Alexandra Dupré, whose last notable client was forcibly retired New York governor Eliot Spitzer. If only she had more than just MySpace and Facebook profiles online, when the media came to out her, a more fleshed-out version of her life would have been available for public dissection. Flooding the zone with accounts of your own desires and adventures (along with the unsexier rest of your life) may spare you future embarrassment, and could only give potential lovers the right idea about you.