HIV Risk and the Internet: Results of the Men’s INTernet Sex (MINTS) Study
- 352 Downloads
This study assessed the feasibility of online recruitment of high-risk Latino men who have sex with men (MSM) for HIV prevention survey research and investigated the relationship between Internet use and unsafe sex. Participants (N = 1,026) were Internet-using Latino MSM living in the U.S. recruited using online banner advertisements. Respondents completed a cross-sectional, online survey in English or Spanish. Sample characteristics reflected national statistics within 5%. Nearly all (99%) reported having used the Internet to seek sex with another man. Two-thirds of respondents reported having unprotected anal sex with ≥1 man in the last year, 57% of these with multiple partners. Participants reported engaging in anal sex and unprotected anal sex with nearly twice as many men first met online versus offline, but risk proportions did not differ. Internet-based HIV prevention research is possible even with geographically-dispersed minority populations. Efficiency appears the primary risk associated with meeting partners online.
KeywordsHIV prevention Internet sex Latino Men who have sex with men Men who use the Internet to seek sex with men MISM
The Men’s Internet Study (MINTS) was funded by the National Institutes of Mental Health Center for Mental Health Research on AIDS, grant number AG63688-01, in response to a request for applications to MH-001-003 “Communications and HIV/STD Prevention.” All research was carried out with the approval of the University of Minnesota Institutional Review Board, human subjects’ committee, study number 0102S83821. The authors acknowledge the assistance of Dr. Willo Pequegnat, project officer at NIMH, and our colleagues also funded on the “Communications and HIV/STD Prevention” RFA, who provided valuable assistance and consultation on numerous aspects of Internet research. The authors thank Dr. Anne Marie Weber-Main for her critical review and editing of manuscript drafts.
- Bandura, A. (1994). Social cognitive theory and exercise of control over HIV infection. In R. J. DiClemente & J. L. Peterson (Eds.), Preventing AIDS: Theories and methods of behavioral interventions. New York, NY: Plenum.Google Scholar
- Beizer, B. (1990). Software testing techniques (2nd ed.). New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold.Google Scholar
- Carballo-Diéguez, A., Miner, M., Dolezal, C., Rosser, B. R. S., & Stanton, J. (2006). Sexual negotiation, HIV status disclosure, and sexual risk behavior among HIV-uninfected and infected Latino MSM Internet users. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 35(4), 473–481.Google Scholar
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2001a). Taking action to combat increases in STDs and HIV risk among men who have sex with men. Alert from Ronald O. Valdiserri, MD, MPH, Deputy Director, National Center for HIV, STD and TB Prevention, Atlanta, GA, dated April 30, 2001. Accessed June 29, 2004 at http://www.cdc.gov/nchstp/od/news/92288_AED_CDC_report-0427c.htm.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2001b). No turning back. Atlanta, GA: CDC.Google Scholar
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2001c). HIV prevention strategic plan through 2005. Atlanta, GA: CDC.Google Scholar
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2004). High-risk sexual behavior by HIV-positive men who have sex with men – 16 sites, United States, 2000-2002. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 53, 891–894.Google Scholar
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2005). Cases of HIV infection and AIDS in the United States. HIV/AIDS Surveillance Report, 16(2) for the year ended December, 2004.Google Scholar
- Díaz, R. M. (1998). Latino gay men and HIV: Culture, sexuality and risk behavior. New York, NY: Routledge.Google Scholar
- Elford, J., Bolding, G., Maguire, M., & Sherr, L. (2000). Combination therapies for HIV and sexual risk behavior among gay men. Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, 23, 266–271.Google Scholar
- Kim, A., McFarland, W., Yu, F., & Klausner, J. (2000). Cbersex.net: Sexual networks over the Internet, Silicon Valley, 1999–2000. Abstracts of the XIII International AIDS Conference; July 9–14, 2000, Durban, South Africa.Google Scholar
- Konstan, J. A., Rosser, B. R. S., Ross, M. W., Stanton, J., & Edwards, W. M. (2005). The story of subject naught: A cautionary but optimistic tale of Internet survey research. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication. 10(2), article 11. Accessible at: http://jcmc.indiana.edu/vol10/issue2/konstan.html.
- Pongritz, L. M., Sierra, L., & Marenco, J. (1999). Welcoming U.S. Hispanics to the digital age. Hispanic Market Update, 6, 1–7.Google Scholar
- Ross, M. W., Månsson, S. A., Daneback, K., Cooper, A., & Tinnaken, R. (2005). Biases in internet sexual health samples: Comparisions of an internet sexuality survey and a national sexual health survey in Sweden. Social Science and Medicine, 61, 245–252.Google Scholar
- Shneiderman, B. (1987). Designing the user interface: Strategies for effective human–computer interaction. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley Publishing Company.Google Scholar
- Simmons, D. C. (2000). Simmon’s Hispanic study. In Telemundo network. Hispanic Market Update, 7:3.Google Scholar
- Simmons, D. C., & Mulryan/Nash Advertising Inc. (1996). Marketing survey of gays and lesbians. In S. Reese (Ed.). A world of differences. Marketing Tools, August 1997. Accessed September 1, 2000 at: www.marketingtools.com/publications/MT/97_mt/9708_mt/mt970822.htm.
- Thometz, R. E., Douglas, W., Dyer, I., & Detels, R. (2000). Recent sexually transmitted disease trends among Hispanic men who have sex with men attending the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center’s STD clinic. In Abstracts of the XIIIth International AIDS Conference, Durban, South Africa, July 9–14. I:116, Abs. MoPeC2339.Google Scholar