May 19, 2015

May 19, 2015
Craigslist Hookups

Welcome to another day in my life. Today is Tuesday and I hope you are having a beary safe and great week so far. Dab the AIDS Bear and I are preparing for visitors coming this weekend.

It seems like a lot of single people (and some in relationships) have discovered hooking up through listings on Craiglist. Besides the obvious moral proplems, there is also another I would like to discuss today.

All of those Craigslist hookups are contributing to a rise in HIV cases, according to a recent study.

Cities all over the U.S. saw a nearly 16% increase in infections after the site entered the area, New York University professor Anindya Ghose and the University of Minnesota’s Jason Chan said.

The researchers linked this spike, which translated to an estimated 6,000 cases nationwide and some $62 million to $65.3 million in treatment costs, to the popularity of using the site to post personal ads for casual sex.

Ghose, a professor of information, operations, and management sciences at NYU’s Stern School of Business, said he and Chan, a former student, started combing through Craigslist after talking about online marketplaces.

“We started seeing a lot of ads for these personal hookups and one night stands,” he told the Daily News. “We were originally under the impression that maybe it was just a New York City thing.”

Ghose and Chan ended up analyzing data from 33 states collected from 1999 to 2008.

They discovered that, across the board, the increase in HIV cases started about a year after Craigslist arrived on the scene

The one-year gap is to be expected, Ghose explained, because the site needed time to gain a following and the infected individuals had to develop symptoms and seek help.

The researchers made adjustments for outside factors, but the story stayed the same.

“No matter how you sliced and diced the data, the results were consistent,” Ghose said.

Chan said in a release that he thinks Craigslist’s creators “had no intent of harming society.”

“They came in with good intentions,” he said. “At the same time, they did not anticipate that users could use the features in an unexpected way with unintended consequences.”

The study was published in the journal MIS Quarterly and is titled “Internet's Dirty Secret: Assessing the Impact of Online Intermediaries on HIV Transmission.”

Craigslist started out in San Francisco in 1995. It began expanding to other cities in 2000.

Hope you have a beary safe and great Tuesday!

Until we meet again; here's wishing you health, hope, happiness and just enough.

big bear hug,

Daddy Dab