The benefits to our global community with the advent and growth of Social Media can be listed, seemingly, in a limitless fashion. For example, it has made the world a smaller place with its ability to instantaneously connect people. However, what is the downside risk in the massive growth that Social Media plays in our lives, and whom if anyone is looking at it? Attached are two articles that support one another in drawing a similar conclusion. That is: in the engagement of site-specific services, the likelihood of users contracting a life threatening STD increases.
Arguably, as people are connecting and sharing content on “craigslist,” the site should qualify as a Social Media site. The first article begins with: “Craigslist entering a new town causes HIV cases to go up 15.9 percent, according to a new study from the University of Minnesota.” This conclusion was drawn from analysis that spanned ten years across the majority of the country. This increase in percentage of HIV cases is equal to an increase in $62 million in health care costs.
In a similar vein, the second article points to applications such as “Tinder,” and “Grindr,” as being responsible for an overall increase of roughly 15 percent in STD transmissions. Some statistics from the piece include: “So-called ‘hook-up’ apps are being blamed for an increase in sex diseases. Gonorrhea cases in England have increased by 15 per cent in 12 months. Syphilis cases have increased by nine per cent between 2012 and 2013. Thanks to Grindr or Tinder, you can acquire chlamydia in five minutes’ “
1. “Craigslist linked to rise in HIV, according to a new study”
The study is published in MIS Quarterly.
2. “Dating apps that pinpoint interested people down to the nearest metre blamed for soaring sex infections”
Questions to Consider:
- Is Social Media responsible for the rise of unprotected promiscuity or does it simply aid in a larger underlying issue?
- Should there be a more stringent governance structure in place, to counter a growing epidemic? If so, who should be responsible for this?
- What, if any, ethical obligations do Social Media providers have? Should They?