Thursday, May 7, 2009

Who would you rather sleep with?

The fear attached to sex with positives
is deeply misplaced.

via NOMOREPOTLUCKS, by Nicholas Little

When Ontario’s campaign against HIV stigma within the gay community came out last fall, some men (mostly HIV- men, but some poz guys too) reacted negatively to the campaign slogan: If you were rejected every time you disclosed, would you?

While delivering campaign materials to one of the local gay bars a few months back, the bartender cornered me and said, "I don't like that message." When I asked him why, he said, "Well, what is it saying? That it's okay for poz guys not to disclose? Are they trying to excuse non-disclosure because rejection hurts so bad?"

These questions weren't always easy to answer, and this campaign really stretched my thinking as a result. As an outreach worker with gay men, I was meant to be able to answer questions just like these.

I actually like the slogan because it is provocative and probably accounts for much of the attention that this campaign received. The success of HIV prevention campaigns aren't measured in terms of the number of viewers reached, but rather in the appreciable ways they improve people's lives, thereby leading to reduced HIV transmission rates. But you have to get people paying attention to, thinking about and discussing your message if it's going to have any impact. A controversial slogan helped make this happen.

I think folks who disliked the campaign slogan felt most uncomfortable when they read it as being aimed at HIV+ men. The campaign is, in fact, targeting HIV- guys. It isn't saying, "Hey poz guys, sick of negative assholes treating you like shit each time you stick your neck out and disclose your status? Well then just don't bother!" Rather, it’s saying, "Hey negative guys! (or perhaps: Hey guys who think you are negative!...) We know the vast majority of you would very much like to remain HIV- and that's a worthy goal. But a lot of you are trying to remain negative by keeping HIV+ men as far away from you as possible. And science shows that that strategy just doesn't work. So let's rethink things a little."

Read the rest.

1 comment:

  1. I'm sorry, but negative men want to stay negative. I know that isn't PC, but it's the basis behind many of the upset responses you're getting. This campaign is saying to me, someone who is very much invested in staying negative, that I should get over the fact that some positive men don't disclose because of rejection and that's somehow okay.

    This campaign actually does nothing other than fan the flames and divisions between neg/pos men because it essentially blames the rejection of negative men for the failure of (some) positive men to disclose.

    If you want to target negative men effectively--and I don't actually honestly believe that this message is only targeting negative men--how about a simple message of "Stay negative--use a condom"?

    Gay men need simple, honest information to make decisions. Not over-sexed, confusing campaigns that simply frustrate and muddy the waters.
    Furthermore, to say that 'mostly negative men' complained about this campaign puts us in a bind--we can't complain, because only negative men would complain and what do we have to complain about anyway, right?


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

select key words

2007 National HIV Prevention Conference 2009 National LGBTI Health Summit 2011 LGBTI Health Summit 2012 Gay Men's Health Summit 2012 International AIDS Conference abstinence only ACT Up activism advocacy Africa african-american aging issues AIDS AIDS Foundation of Chicago anal cancer anal carcinoma anal health anal sex andrew's anus athlete ball scene bareback porn barebacking bathhouses bears big bold and beautiful Bisexual Bisexual Health Summit bisexuality black gay men black msm blood ban blood donor body image bottom Brian Mustanski BUTT Center on Halsted Charles Stephens Chicago Chicago Black Gay Men's Caucus Chicago Task Force on LGBT Substance Use and Abuse Chris Bartlett chubby chaser circumcision civil rights civil union Coaching with Jake communication community organizing condoms Congress crystal meth dating dating and mating with alan irgang David Halperin David Munar depression disclosure discrimination domestic violence don't ask don't tell douche downlow Dr. James Holsinger Dr. Jesus Ramirez-Valles Dr. Rafael Diaz Dr. Ron Stall drag queen Ed Negron emotional health ENDA Eric Rofes exercise Feast of Fun Feel the love... female condom fitness Friday is for Faeries FTM gay culture gay identity gay latino gay male sex gay marriage gay men gay men of color gay men's health Gay Men's Health Summit 2010 gay pride gay rights gay rugby gay sex gay youth gender harm reduction hate crime HCV health care health care reform health insurance hepatitis C HIV HIV care HIV drugs HIV negative HIV positive HIV prevention HIV stigma HIV strategic plan HIV testing hiv vaccine HIV/AIDS homophobia homosexuality hottie hotties how are you healthy? Howard Brown Health Center HPV human rights humor hunk Illinois IML immigration International AIDS Conference international mr. leather internet intimacy IRMA Jim Pickett leather community leathersex Leon Liberman LGBT LGBT adoption LGBT culture LGBT health LGBT rights LGBT seniors LGBT youth LGBTI community LGBTI culture LGBTI health LGBTI rights LGBTI spirituality LGV LifeLube LifeLube forum LifeLube poll LifeLube subscription lifelube survey Lorenzo Herrera y Lozano love lube lubricant Lymphogranuloma Venereum masturbation mental health microbicides middle Monday Morning Perk-Up MRSA MSM music National AIDS Strategy National Gay Men's Health Summit negotiated safety nutrition One Fey's Tale oral sex Peter Pointers physical health Pistol Pete pleasure PnP podcast policy politics poppers porn post-exposure prophylaxis PrEP President Barack Obama Presidential Campaign prevention Project CRYSP prostate prostate cancer public health public sex venues queer identity racism Radical Faerie recovery rectal microbicides relationships religion research safe sex semen Senator Barack Obama sero-adaptation sero-sorting seroguessing sex sexual abuse sexual addiction sexual health sexual orientation Sister Glo Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence smoking social marketing spirituality STD stigma stonewall riots substance abuse treatment substance use suicide super-bug superinfection Susan Kingston Swiss declaration syphilis Ted Kerr Test Positive Aware Network testicle self-examination testicular cancer testing The "Work-In" The 2009 Gay Men's Health Agenda Tony Valenzuela top Trans and Intersex Association trans group blog Trans Gynecology Access Program transgender transgender day of remembrance transgendered transmen transphobia transsexual Trevor Hoppe universal health care unsafe sex vaccines video violence viral load Who's That Queer Woof Wednesday writers yoga You Tube youtube