Cover image by Joel Saget. Link trigger warning.

You walk into a hotel room. But instead of turning on the light and expecting an empty bed to throw your suitcase on, there’s someone there—waiting for you.

But they aren’t real, and they aren’t really waiting. They’re a lifeless, silicone sex doll, freshly disinfected from the last customer, and queued up for the next.

Sounds like a weird twist to a sci-fi show, right? But sex doll brothels are being normalized, opening up in various parts of Europe—the first opened in Barcelona, Spain, last year—and becoming the new talk of the sex AI movement. This one specifically opened up in April, in anticipation of World Cup players and the massive crowds of tourists and foreign visitors to Russia for the games.

A representative for the hotel said, “We really are waiting for a flow of visitors during the World Cup—and we look forward many foreign clients… This is why we are now getting special permission to welcome foreign visitors. As for the players—if they are allowed by their coaches and managers, we will only welcome them.”

Related: Plastic Prostitutes: First Sex Doll Brothel Opens In Barcelona, Spain

According to the hotel representative, the new establishment is going to operate like a standard hourly rate hotel with a twist: along with renting a room at an hourly rate, a customer could also rent a sex doll for the duration of their stay.

The company is convinced that their new synthetic sex hotspots will help with the issue of sex trafficking, but a group of UK researchers has recently announced there is zero evidence to support that claim.

We can’t begin to describe how creepy this is, and unfortunately, this is only the beginning of robotic sex being normalized and even promoted in society.

A new, disturbing norm?

Futuristic experts predict it won’t be long before a lot of humans will be doing it on the regular—with machines.

Imagine a world where sex with an inanimate humanoid robot is completely normal. Doesn’t seem real? Apparently, this will be common in just a few years.

Futurologist Dr. Ian Pearson has recently released a report called “The Future of Sex” in partnership with one of the UK’s leading sex toy shops, and he predicts the future of how humans will be getting it on. He makes the point that robotic sex toys have been in use for around a century, and that virtual reality porn is about to become mainstream. (Sadly, he’s probably right about that.)

“Sex with humans could soon be a thing of the past,” the German magazine Spiegel wrote in an article about the report by Pearson, who “draws a future in which robotic brothels and strip clubs with computer-controlled dancers are normal.”

Some think that the ethics of watching virtual reality porn—simulating sex acts with a fake, 3D person—are no different than the ethics of having sex with a robot. After all, people are constantly looking for new ways to “spice up” their sex lives. This is proven by the $15 billion dollars and growing sex toy industry, and now, it’s proven by growing interest in lifelike sex dolls that will eventually be able to talk and respond to verbal commands.

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Recently, an international conference at the University of London, “Love and Sex With Robots,” reflected this reality of looking at the wide possibilities of humanoid sex. The conference showed a new market that engineers and programmers are working hard to meet, creating dolls programmed to display moods and emotions—some that might be ready for production as soon as this year.

Replacement humans, fake intimacy

The whole idea of humanoids replacing real, intimate connections between real people is concerning to those who know the real scientific harms of pornography and that sex is healthiest when it’s with a real person, not a robot. Robotic sex is even more concerning to those who understand the very real negative effects this could have on humans sexually and socially.

Related: What It Means to be Pro-Sex & Anti-Porn

The truth is, we don’t have to wait until 2050. According to a new report, about 27% of Millennials say they think it’ll be normal and acceptable in the near future to have friendships and romantic relationships with robots instead of humans. Crazy, right?

This is a reality that is gaining traction every day. As more people opt for yet another counterfeit to what real relationships and intimacy can offer, the effect of porn, sex robots and other forms of artificial love, will continue to harm individuals, relationships and society.

We can’t be okay with technology taking the place of real, healthy human relationships. Whether it’s a computer screen or a sex doll, we need to be educated and take a stand for healthy sexuality and human connection. Science, facts and personal accounts all agree that porn kills love, and that’s just not cool.

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Spread the word about the dangers of pornography, sex dolls, and other harmful distortions of healthy sexuality. SHARE this article to show your concern and raise awareness on the issue.

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