Skip to comments.Consumer Reports condom ratings are not reliable
Posted on 01/18/2005 11:08:20 AM PST by IRLC
If you were told about a product that would fail 15% of the time over one year, would you consider that product reliable? I suspect not. If you were told that a new cars engine or transmission had a 100% failure rate over a five-year period, would you find that performance acceptable? I am certain that you would not.
The February 2005 issue of Consumer Reports does not rate automobiles, but they do rate condoms. Consumer Reports gives seven condom products excellent ratings on its test results with overall ratings of very good. They rate the vast majority of condoms tested as very good overall. However, their comparative guide to contraceptives included with these ratings shows that in typical use, the male condom fails 15 times per 100 users per year. Statistically, this becomes a 100% failure rate in less than five years.
What does typical use mean? For condoms, it is contrasted with a failure rate of only 2 per 100 if used perfectly. For a Depo-Provera injection, the failure rate is 3 per 100 in typical use, and for the birth control pill, the failure rate is 8 per 100 in typical use. These statistics seem to confirm that typical use must mean normal usage by average people.
Condoms are claimed to be important to prevent teen pregnancy. Can teenagers be considered typical users? That seems unlikely. If failure rates go even higher for less typical users, this means that a teenage girl who relies on condoms for protection has a 100% chance of getting pregnant at least once during 4 years of high school. Does that sound like safe sex?
No wonder Consumer Reports also provides information on abortion options. Clearly, people who rely on their ratings in choosing contraceptives will need abortions somewhere along the way. Consumer Reports claims a typical abortion is at least 12 times safer than childbirth. In fact, when a truly scientific study was done to compare the risks of abortion and childbirth, abortion was found to be at least four times more dangerous than childbirth (http://www.afterabortion.org/PAR/V8/n2/finland.html).
Of course, prevention of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) has a higher failure rate than pregnancy. Some STDs can be transmitted even when a condom is used perfectly. How long will it take for teenagers to acquire one or more STDs? You know the answer. That is why STD rates have reached epidemic proportions, except among teens who practice abstinence.
Consumer Reports claims to be unbiased in their ratings. However, the biographical information available on James Guest, the CEO of Consumers Union, which publishes the magazine, shows that he previously headed Planned Parenthood of Maryland. Given the disconnect between condom "ratings" and results in typical use, the virtual endorsement of abortion as the birth control choice of last resort, and the inaccurate information that minimizes the health risks of contraceptives, it appears that the Planned Parenthood party line was very effectively conveyed in this Consumer Reports article. It seems safe to conclude that Consumers Union is not unbiased when it comes to condoms and other birth control methods.
This bias is further confirmed by the failure to accurately report on natural family planning by calling it "rhythm" and using the outdated reliability statistics from rhythm. You might want to express your concern to Consumer Reports about their misleading coverage of condoms and birth control, or even cancel your subscription in response to their bias.
Ironically, two out of three condoms distributed by Planned Parenthood received poor ratings with recommendations that they be avoided. Here is another deviation from typical use toward a higher failure rate. Who are the most likely users of Planned Parenthood condoms? With names like lollipop, honeydew, and assorted colors, who else, but teenagers? No wonder Planned Parenthood continues to commit more abortions each year, remaining unchallenged as the largest abortion provider in the nation.
And the mechanism used to determine their reliability?
Probably stretched over the front end of a Honda Civic.
"My boys can swim!"
If I'm not mistaken, CR "tests" a condom by filling it with air to a specified PSI. If it breaks, it failed.
I'm no expert but, it seems to me that's just a test of whether a particular condom is suited to serve as a balloon.
Welcome to Free Republic! Thanks for posting this.
Rubbers...like showering with your socks on...Glad I don't have to put up with those anymore...the wife is too, latex allergy...
LOL! That test is not exactly User Acceptance Testing.
Nowhere does the thought "Gee, maybe you should only have sex with a single partner that you are married to when you are ready to have children." ever enter into their minds, despite the fact that it would unravel the whole problem.
If a Condom fails send the serial number of it back to the manufacturer for warranty replacement.
If you havent seen the serial number on a condom its probably because you dont have to roll it back far enough for it to show.
People don't realize that the purpose of sex is to make babies.
Maybe for the mother....
Sounds like that's where the rubber meets the road.
That's all? So if you only want one kid, you only get to boink one time?
You got kids?
IIRC, the product literature in the old days suggested they were tested by being filled with water.....
The serial number on this one here is
Nope, it's not a serial. Mine all say 30cm near the open end and if that was a serial, every number would be different.
Amazing how many letters they can fit along a two inch area these days, huh?
Should have added the smiley face. :-)
Elaine: I knew those condoms were defective!
Jerry: How did you know they were defective?!
George walks in.
Elaine: Because! Because she missed her period!
George: She missed her period? Oh my god. I can't believe it! I'm a father! I did it! My boys can swim! I can do it! I can do it!
'...the male condom fails 15 times per 100 users per year. Statistically, this becomes a 100% failure rate in less than five years."
Yes, but the failure rate is better than Microsoft's Windows OS."
LOL! Well Done Sir
As happens so damn often here, that episode was on last night.
Let me rephrase that,
Teenagers don't realize that the primary purpose of sex is to procreate.
Pregnancy has come to be viewed as A consequence of sex. It should be viewed as THE consequence of sex.
Sex makes babies. And allot of people my age don't get that. They know it, they just don't get it.
Worried the girl might become pregnant and adversely impact the family's status, she consulted the family doctor.
The doctor told her that teenagers today were very willful and any attempt to stop the girl would probably result in rebellion. He then told her to arrange for her daughter to be put on birth control and until then, talk to her and give her a box of condoms.
Later that evening, as her daughter was preparing for a date, the woman told her about the situation and handed her a box of condoms.
The girl burst out laughing and reached over to hug her mother saying:"Oh Mom! You don't have to worry about that! I'm dating Susan!"
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