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Why io9 is pretty much NSFW
Posted Feb 12, 2010 - 13:29:27

Pile of stuff I used to read Science Fiction news blog io9 regularly. I chose it over other scifi blogs mostly because it was just a click away from the formerly Gawker owned Consumerist, and while I kept reading for a while after the Consumerist was sold to Consumer's Union, I stopped because:
  1. It was inconvenient to go to
  2. I got tired of their snark for snark's sake
I don't want to spend too much time talking about how the general negative attitude of a large portion of the io9 staff bugs me (as that isn't the point of this entry), but it's there none the less.

Now, recently I decided I would check it every once and a while after my many month hiatus from it. Much to my chagrin this morning though (as I arrived at work ten minutes prior to when I'm scheduled to start), I found myself unable to keep reading it without constantly looking over my shoulder. To be clear, I work in a sizable office, and there is nothing about my cubicle that doesn't scream NERD. There was no embarrassment over the geeky content, as everyone knows that I'm that guy who helps run that one convention, and there are Transformers all over my desk.

The issue that plagued me was simply the high ratio of sexual content.

Now, I'm not going to claim that the majority of content on io9 is sexual, but just enough of it is to make sure that most times SOME of it is on my screen while reading the front page. At the time of this writing, of the 42 stories currently displayed on the front page, five of them are blatantly sexual. That may not seem like many, but that's still about 12%. This isn't including the "featured story" with a suggestive image.

Now, I'm not a prude on any level. I'm not uncomfortable talking about the subject (although I assume that some of my readers may be uncomfortable with ME talking about the subject), but there are some things which I just can't have up on my screen when my boss walks by.

I honestly never thought about it before, but the io9 crew seems to focus on sexual content much more than any other scifi blog out there. I'm not against mentioning it, but it's almost as if they go out of their way to FIND more of it. Maybe it drives ad views, but to me... it makes it not safe for work.
- Traegorn

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This reminds me much of high school and sometimes college when I'm on the computer or reading a magazine and there is a very sexual ad right there. It's hard to cover that up especially when you're dealing with easily offended people in the process.
I stopped reading io9 for other reasons (snark for snark's sake and overall negativity), but I also agree that io9 as a whole is NSFW.

I used to check it at the office, but I got paranoid that while I was on the home page, there would be an article with sexual content in plain view when the boss would walk by.  It really wasn't worth it to continue visiting io9.

Also, not only is io9 NSFW, I think it also can be risky for a teenager.  There are probably many parents who if they saw the sexual content on the screens, even if it was just the home page, who would ban the site from the family computer.
I forgot to add the other reason I stopped reading io9 - their utter lack of knowledge about science, especially biology, combined with their insistence on writing about it.

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