Gabrielle Larsen mylog

  • Tauira / Student
    Gabrielle Larsen
  • Te Kapa Tauira / Student Team
    Gabrielle Larsen
  • Kaitautoko / Contributor
    Gabrielle Larsen
  • Kaiako / Lecturers
    Kate Humphries, David Bell
  • Client
    Bowel Cancer NZ
  • School
    Media Design School

People don’t like talking about their poo.

Even if poo happens to land itself a place in our conversations, it’s only as a funny joke. Or, at best, a ripper of a story.

Fear, embarrassment, and disgust. They’re the three things that make us avoid bowel screening (National Institutes of Health). When we don’t feel comfortable talking about poo, we don’t know what to look for. When we don’t know what to look for, the stigma is destined to stay. And, it’s a deadly stigma - bowel cancer is Aotearoa’s second highest cancer killer, more than prostate and breast combined.

But, what if we could harness the abilities of the one thing we all have in our hand as we’re plastered to a toilet seat? What if our phones could do something?

mylog is Bowel Cancer NZ’s new app that keeps a log of your logs. Snapping a picture of your poo gets mylog to store, encrypt, and analyse your day’s bowel movement, constantly checking each picture against its peers. mylog keeps an eye on how your bowels may change over time - the hallmark sign of bowel cancer. If too many changes are registered, then mylog will give you a nice, unthreatening nudge to head to a healthcare professional. Users can also tag certain poos with keywords or other symptoms experienced, report if there’s something peculiar (such as blood or mucus), view their entire log, and learn from trusted resources about bowel cancer, disorders, symptoms, procedures, and more.

Though it is not a real screening, mylog is built to bring poo out of its corridor of stigma, and to educate us on what’s probably fine, and what’s probably not. If we’d talk to our best mate about skin cancer, but not bowel cancer, then that’s a problem we need to fix.

So, while we’re still unable to talk about poo, let’s get our phone camera to do the talking for us. Let’s get the curable 90% of bowel cancer cases taken off the charts completely.