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POLL: Town of Dildo objects to sex store using town as backdrop for products

Letters measuring 10 feet high and five feet wide on a hill overlooking the tiny Trinity Bay town of Dildo — population 1,500 — were put in place this week, thanks to American TV talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel. The letters — the cost of which were covered by Kimmel’s producers, along with land donation by the Smith families in the town — were installed to mirror the Hollywood hills letters in California.
Some residents of Dildo are upset Our Pleasure, an N.L. sexual health company, is using the town in social media postings featuring some of the sex toys it sells. — Contributed

Residents start petition to stop Our Pleasure from using photos of sex toys taken in the community on its social media sites

ST. JOHN'S, N.L. —

Residents of Dildo are voicing their displeasure with a local sex store that had photos of sex toys taken in various locations around the town and used them on its social media feeds.

Our Pleasure, which pegs itself as Canada’s sexual health store, has a video posted on its Facebook page showing a store representative displaying packaged sex toys in front of the Dildo road sign, by a picnic table with the community and ocean in the background and in front of the Dildo Boathouse Inn sign.

It’s enraged many residents, who feel that despite its name and the recent international attention from American talk show host Jimmy Kimmel, such overt displays of sexuality can be offensive to many, especially children.

“We didn’t think it was appropriate,” said Andrew Pretty, a member of Dildo’s local service district committee. “A lot of people are upset over it. 

“If they had just casually mentioned the name on their site and didn’t go to that extreme, we wouldn’t have had a problem, but they went too far with this.

“That’s not what the town is about at all.”

Dildo has been bombarded with visitors these past few weeks as a result of being featured on Kimmel’s show. While Kimmel — who staged a mock campaign to run for mayor — didn’t show up in the tiny Trinity Bay town of 1,500, several of the show's producers and his sidekick, Guillermo Rodriguez, did visit. 

“If they had just casually mentioned the name on their site and didn’t go to that extreme, we wouldn’t have had a problem, but they went too far with this." — Andrew Pretty

Even after they left late last week, tourists flocked to the town to get a glimpse of the huge Dildo sign Kimmel and his show paid for and built in a hill overlooking the town.

Kimmel may have been poking fun at the name, but Pretty said, “What he was doing was pretty mild and it was tongue-and-cheek-type innuendos that you could take either way…

“But (what Our Pleasure is doing) goes too far.”

Pretty said residents aren’t happy with the way Our Pleasure has handled the issue. He said they reached out to company representatives, but said they were rude and insulting.

“I don’t have a problem with them using the name Dildo on their site. You can’t stop anyone from doing that, especially with all the hype and the attention we’ve gotten,” said Pretty, who was one of many residents featured on Kimmel’s shows for several weeks. 

“But to go out and take pictures (of sex toys) in broad daylight, with all kinds of cars passing by … and they had one picture right next to the playground … it’s not right.

“I think about the children. There’s no need of an eight-year-old seeing Our Pleasure going around with sex toys in the community.”

Pretty said a resident in the town sells sex toy products, but doesn’t overtly advertise it.

“I think they dinged us because of the nature of our business.” — Cathy Daniels, Our Pleasure owner

Our Pleasure owner Cathy Daniels told The Telegram she believes the photos and video on the company’s Facebook page put a positive spin on sexual health.

“In our industry, we’re very sex-positive. But still, it’s still a very taboo topic to talk about it,” she said. “So, for us, for Dildo to be (in the media), although they were talking about the community, they were also talking about the object.

“This brings a taboo subject out in the open. People who weren’t always OK to talk about it now are talking about it ….

“I think they dinged us because of the nature of our business.”

Daniels said they didn’t want to offend anyone. While the photos were taken Friday in the daytime, including one on the main road, said the photos were taken discreetly and nobody was around.

She admits the company also hoped to get spinoff, but insists the photos and video weren’t put on its social media site to advertise.

“It was more of a fun video,” she said.

But many residents aren’t laughing and don’t want such products overtly displayed in their town in the future.

Pretty hopes the petition — which already has more than five full pages of signatures — will put a stop to the company using the photos online or taking any others like it.

“There’s no need of it …,” Pretty said. “We really hope (the petition) will make a difference.”

Twitter: @TelyRosie


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