An L.A. billboard that allegedly links the increasing rate of sexual transmitted diseases to dating apps, sparked outrage with Tinder who sent a letter to the AIDS Healthcare Foundation demanding the removal of the billboard.
The billboard in Los Angeles has the words “Tinder, Chlamydia, Grinds, Gonorrhoea” written on it.
Whitney Engeran-Cordova, director of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation said that the purpose of the billboard is only to raise awareness regarding sexually transmitted diseases (STD) and to encourage people who use dating app to get regular STD screenings. The mobile dating-apps that are location-based have become a very efficient tool when it comes to finding a new sexual partner, and with that possibly a new STD as well, Whitney Engeran-Cordova said in a statement.
Tinder, one of the dating apps that was featured on the billboard, was evidently not please with Cordova’s claims.
Jonathan Reichman, Tinder attorney stated that: “These unprovoked and wholly unsubstantiated accusations are made to irreparably damage Tinder’s reputation in an attempt to encourage others to take an HIV test by your organization.”
However, the AIDS Healthcare Foundation is not willing to remove the app. The foundation referenced a study that was conducted by the Rhode Island Department of Health which found that the number of people who tested positive for STD increased from 2013 to 2014. The reports stated that in many of the these casual hook-ups, people would not use proper protection, or they would be under the influence of drugs and/ or alcohol.
The AIDS Healthcare Foundation referenced an article that was published in Vanity Fair, which said that casual sexual encounters were now more popular due to apps like Tinder. They also cited another study that was published in the National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health. This study showed that gay men, who found new sexual partners using location-based dating-app, had a higher risk of testing positive for STD like Chlamydia and Gonorrhoea.
Grinder is a location-based app that is specifically geared towards gay men. Grinder stated that on its website there are sections dedicated to healthcare issues and that they often provide educational campaigns for men and encourage gay men to test for STD.
Image Source: thewrap