According to a team of researchers working at New York University’s Stern School of Business, Craigslist is directly linked to the spread of STDs. In other news, New York University’s Stern School of Business is considering changing its name to the University of Obvious.
The researchers performing the study linked Craigslist to a 14 percent increase in the number of new AIDs cases. They also reported a similar connection with regards to new syphilis infections.
Of couse, none of this should come as any kind of surprise. Craigslist makes it easy for individuals looking for fast, anonymous sex to hook up with like-minded people. Some have argued that it fosters sexual openness and empowers people. While none one is here to judge the sexual behavior of others, there’s no denying that frequent sex with strangers opens a person up to significant health risks.
Craiglist makes a lot of money from the adult services section of its local sites–some say as much as $45 million annually–so it’s unlikely that the site will make any significant changes to try to prevent the spread of STDs. As usual, it all comes down to education. People are going to continue having anonymous, unprotected sex regardless of whether Craigslist (or a similar site) exists.