Miranda Hall writes about her discomfort with Silicon Valley bros developing period apps.
"A few months ago, I got an invite from my friend Holly to start using Eve, a fertility tracking app for "savvy" gals who "just want to track their cycle and have fun," as the app says. An estimated 200 million people have downloaded period trackers worldwide.
Eve says things like "Men are cute" and "Get it, girl xo," and recommends sex positions that seem more likely to end in a hospital visit than an orgasm."
This becomes particularly weird with the "partner" feature that allows any second person, although usually assumed to be your DH (short for Dear Husband on the Glow chatrooms) to "monitor" the body of his DW. A senior representative from Glow told me that "notifications are not based on gender stereotypes but rather on the role that each user has on the journey ahead." But the different tips sent to the partners are based on some pretty outdated roles.
There is no clearer evidence that Silicon Valley is far too male-centric than the fact that any of these apps are developed by mostly men.
You and your "DH" aren't the only ones monitoring "What's Up Down There." The data of people who are pregnant or trying to conceive is worth a huge amount of money; women planning a baby can be sold endless products and the global IVF market is expected to reach $27 billion by 2022. Period Calendar and a number of other apps already have targeted advertising, and Glow was originally created inside a tech incubator called HVF, the aim of which was to "create value by leveraging data."
Let's be clear, there is little scientific value knowing how much sex someone is having or how long since their last period. While women are deserving of far more research into their health, this is not it. The "value" being "leveraged" here is your time for advertisers, this is a one way street.