Are sexual partners met online associated with HIV/STI risk behaviours? Retrospective and daily diary data in conflict

B. S. Mustanski*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

95 Scopus citations

Abstract

The association between Internet sex-seeking and sexual risk-taking was explored using both retrospective and daily diary methodology. Men who have sex with men (MSM) (N=113) were recruited through a variety of Internet sites. Participants completed retrospective questionnaires on their history of Internet use to seek sexual partners and their engagement in sexual risk-taking behaviours. Participants also completed daily diaries for up to 30 days, which assessed if partners were met through the Internet and what types of sexual contact occurred. Multilevel modelling was used to analyze the daily diary data. The retrospective and daily diary data produced opposite results. In the retrospective data, a history of online sex-seeking was associated with greater numbers of sexual partners in the last year, one-time sex partners, sex without condoms and failure to discuss partners' sexual histories. In the daily diary data, unprotected anal intercourse (UAI) was less likely to occur with partners met online than with partners met by other means. These data suggest that men who engage in high-risk sex with other men use the Internet as a tool for meeting sexual partners, not that meeting partners online causes high-risk sex.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)822-827
Number of pages6
JournalAIDS Care - Psychological and Socio-Medical Aspects of AIDS/HIV
Volume19
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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