There has been considerable academic interest in how people living with HIV use the internet for online dating and sex seeking.
Most of this work has focused on the relationship between internet use and the risk of viral transmission.
Forty-two people – 22 men and 20 women – were infected through heterosexual sex, while one person was infected through injecting drugs.
For most of the other people, the means of infection was not reported.
AIDS is caused by a human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which was originated in non-human primates in Central and West Africa.
While various sub-groups of the virus acquired human infectivity at different times, the global pandemic had its origins in the emergence of one specific strain – HIV-1 subgroup M – in Léopoldville in the Belgian Congo (now Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of the Congo) in the 1920s.
The pandemic HIV-1 strain (group M or Main) and a rare strain found only in a few Cameroonian people (group N) are clearly derived from SIVcpz strains endemic in Pan troglodytes troglodytes chimpanzee populations living in Cameroon.
Thus, this region is presumably where the virus was first transmitted from chimpanzees to humans.
Email (Send & Receive) allow members to interact within HIV Passions without giving out personal contact details.
Chat options include text chat, audio chat & webcam chat.*HIV Passions is one site within the Passions Network network of 260 niche online dating social networking sites.
The disclosure of an HIV-positive status and the selection of HIV-positive partners are explored as key mechanisms for preventing the spread of the virus while enabling people ‘living with HIV’ to form intimate relations, ‘sharing the virus’ in other ways – practices conceptualised here as ‘viral-sociality’.
Throughout the discussion attention is drawn to how sexual relations, clinical encounters and HIV-related criminal prosecutions intersect in this field, such that the most private aspects of ‘living with’ the virus can at the same time be the most public.
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