Log-on, hook-up, and contract gonorrhoea? Not exactly the best kind of promotion for gay dating apps, but the statistics found by a new study say it’s an increasing reality.
The study, conducted by the Los Angeles LGBT Centre, has revealed that gay men who use apps such as Grindr and Scruff are at a higher risk of contracting a sexually transmitted infection.
The STI test results of over 7,000 gay and bi-sexual men, found that gay males who use the apps, which operate by using the GPS systems in smartphones and tablets to locate users in the vicinity, have a 25 percent greater risk of being infected, specifically with gonorrhoea and a 37 percent greater chance of contracting chlamydia.
The lead researcher of the US study said of the results, “We want to educate gay and bisexual men about the potential risks they may face with these apps – as technology has its benefits, it also has certain risks. Sex on demand is being redefined by technology; prevention programs must learn how to effectively exploit the same technology, and keep pace with changing contemporary risk factors for STI and HIV transmission”.
In addition to these findings, the study discovered that gay social apps are predominantly used by younger, well-educated men under age 40 of either Caucasian or Asian backgrounds.
Grindr, which was one of the first of such apps, gained 2.5 million new users in 2012, and a 2013 report told that it had six million users in 192 countries worldwide.
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