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Dubai Can’t Get It Up!


Last week Durex launched SOS Condoms, the world’s first condom app to be premiered in Dubai. Well, due to pressures from the local community and government representatives, Durex announced yesterday that the app, only a week in operation, had been shelved.

This doesn’t come as a surprise to us as it seemed too good to be true given Dubai’s inclination to introduce new laws or products, only to retract itself a few weeks later. This happens when the local government realises it cannot handle a new law, or when the local community lobbies against and ultimately condemns a particular business if deemed too radical for its liking.

According to 7Days, UAE cultural expert Nasif Kayed and general manager of the Sheikh Moha­mmed Centre for Cultural Understanding in Dubai, yesterday labelled the campaign “totally inappropriate”. He stressed that he was not furious over the product itself as “married people have to use a condom” but the manner in which it was promoted “encouraged promiscuity”.

However, before the campaign was scrapped, the advert, featuring a series of seemingly unmarried couples in intimate positions, had attracted more than 705,200 hits on YouTube. It included a young couple kissing passionately in a stationary car – an act that could land you with a public indecency charge in the UAE. Kayed added: “From a religious perspective, it is totally inappropriate. To promote such a sin is more sinful than the sinner. It is damaging to a younger generation.”

SOS Condoms was clearly a bit premature – never a good thing when it comes to sex…