They say to the rest of the world that we belong apart, that we are less than, that we are a hilarious Positive Singles punch line. Maybe some people use them as a transitional tool before re-entering the wider dating sphere, and hey, cool, whatever. But they are just as often predatory environments where newly diagnosed men and women (but usually women) are bombarded with attention.Like other dating services, they can be unsafe spaces for women where harassment and coercion thrive.STI dating services are a product of the stigma, not an empowering way out of it.Not to mention that people with herpes are diverse. They reinforce the impulse of scared, raw people to hate themselves and hide from the rest of the world. Not to mention these products are often cheap and tacky. Herpes dating apps rely on, profit from and contribute to the social stigma that I am absolutely against. Creating a dating app only for people with herpes feeds into the prejudice that people with STIs shouldn’t date people without STIs.
Some of them bring on consultants in the sexual health world, but only after the fact, and by and large their founders do not come from our community.
The relationships that start with the premise “Hey I’ve got herpes too, let’s get a drink!
” are usually short and predicated on nothing more than a false sense of familiarity.
STI dating services are almost always unethical money-grabs that prey on what seems like a potentially underserved niche market.
This Silicon Valley opportunism is antithetical to real social change and progress.