Welcome to the strangest article you will read all day. As reported by the Mirror, the UK, in the near future, may get its very own “robot sex brothel", pending investment guarantees. This follows on from the founding company, LumiDolls, opening its very first naughty robot residence in Barcelona just this February, before it suddenly disappeared and moved to a mystery location.
And now, a timely disclaimer: Sex between two consenting adults is a marvelously fun and calorie-consuming activity that all should be able to enjoy. People are also very idiosyncratic, and each individual has their own sexual preferences, fantasies, and escapades.
Putting that aside for a moment, you wouldn’t be blamed for thinking copulating with a robot – especially one that is definitely in the uncanny valley range – is a little, well, unorthodox. We don’t know about you, but we’ve not yet embraced this Westworld-esque form of friskiness, so we went onto the company's official website to try and find out how it works.
“All our dolls, like all women, have oral cavity, vaginal and anal,” the website proudly boasts.
“Always remember that with any of your cavities you must use the lubricants (of a single use) that you will find in each of the rooms.” Yes, we assume chafing on bits of plastic, metal or any other strange alloy would be particularly uncomfortable.
But what of the after-sex sanitation methods? Don’t worry, the company says – they’ve got you covered.
“Our LumiDolls are, before and after each service, properly disinfected with special antibacterial soaps,” they hasten to note. “We guarantee high standards of hygiene.” Well, that’s a relief.
Apparently, the dolls have a wide range of movement, but it’s unclear how “robotic” they are, or how autonomous they are. Essentially, they’re just lifeless, woman-like objects. You can dress them up however you like, all with the help of a receptionist who, we presume, is a real human.
For an hour, it’ll cost you around €100 in Barcelona, which we assume will translate to £100 (about $128 dollars). We can’t quite tell if their dolls will compete, technologically speaking, with a range of others that have “fully functional” genitalia and customizable artificial intelligence “personalities”.
If this entire concept makes you uncomfortable, then you’re not alone. The Campaign Against Sex Robots is a real thing too, which posits that “sex robots further sexually objectifies women.”
“We take issue with those arguments that propose that sex robots could help reduce sexual exploitation and violence towards prostituted persons,” their mission statement reads. They “point to all the evidence that shows how technology and the sex trade coexist and reinforce each other creating more demand for human bodies.”
So there you go. Welcome to 2017.
Image in text: Aki, one of the dolls on offer in Spain. LumiDolls