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An Interview with Ola Miedzynska, CEO & founder of EU Sxtech conference

2021-08-02
min read
An Interview with Ola Miedzynska, CEO & founder of EU Sxtech conference

Hi Ola! We are excited to have you on xoafterglow.com — welcome. As the CEO and founder of Sxtech conference in Berlin, where did the idea for the conference come about?

 

Thank you for having me! I’m excited to be here. The inspiration for creating a sex tech conference was Harmony – the sexbot. Harmony A.I. was my introduction to the sex tech world. 

 

Tech is a huge part of my life, from career to hobby. The first years of my career were focused on the support and development of early-stage startups from idea to product commercialization and international expansion. I moved into emerging technologies such as augmented reality, wearables, advanced human-machine interfaces, blockchain, and biotech. 

 

I was utterly immersed in the artificial intelligence sector. I was absolutely fascinated by the innovation and possibilities around A.I. When I was a tech event director, I pitched a panel with Harmony A.I. and was laughed out of the room. They told me I was crazy to entertain a sexbot at a tech conference. I was actually shocked and offended. 

 

The creation of Sx Tech Eu was necessity meets opportunity. Sex is a universal experience. We are all having it or want to be having it! I know I do! The last decade has seen a massive cultural shift in attitudes and legislation regarding sex and sexuality. However, it’s a topic that is very stigmatized and restricted. In many ways, it feels like the dark ages for sexual technology. Because of that, there is a massive gap in centralization and organization. And that’s a missed opportunity, especially since sex tech has been valued at $30b and climbing. 

 

Aside from the necessity for such a universal experience to have an organized platform of professionals to progress its agenda, it was the business opportunity of a lifetime. I saw the opportunity to fill a gap and merge my ethics with my career experience. My passion and advocacy for uniting sexual innovations under one roof are also personal. The lack of inclusive technology, research, and attention on diverse experiences, from women to non-binary to trans people, affects all of us. One night, I thought, I’ll make a conference that isn’t restricted by outdated mentalities. It’s an enormous task. But absolutely necessary. 

 

 

How would you define sex tech, and why should we care about it?

 

Sex tech is an industry that leverages the power of technology to enhance pleasure and sexual wellness. Sex tech is the only arm of the tech industry that addresses and includes fundamental rights and experiences that deeply affect our identity and everyday lives. Like I said, sex is universal. Humanity only exists because of sex, yet everyone is afraid to acknowledge that it happens and that our experiences are different. 

 

The real significance behind embracing sex tech is empathy. These are innovations born from someone’s problematic experience. We gain nothing by ignoring problems. In fact, by refusing to acknowledge a problem, we marginalize the people who experience them. That creates an even deeper rift in human empathy. 

 

Beyond the basic decency of caring about others, a problem is a financial opportunity from a business perspective. One of our basic human drives is to feel pleasure. There is an untapped market for people who have been left behind by exclusive and anatomically incongruent innovations. Sex tech is a lucrative investment opportunity. Giving people tools and technology to feel pleasure is really a public service. 

 

 

Why is sex tech important for sexual wellness?

 

The entire aim of sex tech is to advance sexual wellness, to move us collectively into a space of inclusiveness and empathy for others’ lived experiences. Before we can make our sexual experiences better, we must first acknowledge the differences in our experiences. By acknowledging differences, we normalize the spectrum of experiences. Sex tech enhances sexual pleasure for some and allows others, like those with disabilities or pathologies, to experience pleasure for the first time. 

 

Sex is personality and identity. These technologies, by their mere existence, give people permission to express and explore. Creating a space that allows people with different needs and preferences to express themselves cultivates a community of happier, healthier people. 

 

 

How do you think technology will change the porn industry? From the porn we consume to how we consume it?

 

Sex tech is making porn inclusive. Traditional pornography is problematic and exclusive. Technology develops to provide an alternative solution for something that isn’t working for someone. We see branches of porn emerge like ethical porn and female-centric porn, which is a direct response to traditional pornographic content being made and marketed with the male gaze in mind. 

 

Culturally, we have become complacent about consuming porn for free. Free porn can contribute to sexism, consent concerns, and gender pay gaps. The rise of ethical porn necessitates paying for porn. Paying for porn ensures fair treatment and payment for all sex workers from start to finish. Ethical porn isn’t afraid to embrace diversity in age, body type, gender, and orientation, so an added benefit of paying for ethical porn is inclusion. And we all know representation in the media matters. We don’t live in a vacuum. What we see affects us and how we identify with the world. 

 

Tech has provided alternative platforms and subscription-based services, like OnlyFans, that give creators and sex workers more autonomy over what they create, who watches it, and what they get paid.

 

Another way tech is changing the landscape of porn is by providing alternative means of erotic material. Auralism is a concept that surged in popularity within the sex tech sphere. Recently, there’s been an abundance of apps and platforms dedicated to erotic audio content. The emphasis on narrative tends to lend itself more towards female audiences. The auditory stimulates the imagination, and that is where fantasy flourishes. Technology is revealing new ways we can experience pleasure and become aroused. It only gets better from here. 

Meet the author...

Meet the author...

Ola Miedzynska is a sex technology and health entrepreneur, startup consultant, sex tech hackathon advisor, and feminist. Ola’s career has centered around the technology industry for over a decade, everything from early-stage startup development to consulting. From augmented reality to wearables, she realized the technology industry lacked an inclusive perspective. Ola launched the first German Sex Tech Hackathon to elevate the innovations and ideas of women and marginalized folx that are historically lacking in research and development. Given the success of the hackathon, Ola went on to become the founder and CEO of Sxtech EU – the only annual conference dedicated to the innovation of technology inside the sex tech industry. Sx Tech EU strives to promote business and technical innovation in the Sex Tech industry by presenting and discussing the latest trends and future possibilities and developing a community of professionals changing the industry landscape. Since 2019, Sxtech EU’s agenda has been represented by 75% of the female entrepreneurs and professionals from the sex tech and fem tech industries. Through her significant contributions, she actively supports technological transformation in building a global ecosystem around two burgeoning industries – sex tech and fem tech. She is currently Berlin-based.