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“So, as much as you can invite people to share openly, and feel comfortable sharing their status openly, that’s been something that we’ve tried to encourage.” Two major studies have highlighted the issue of STIs and dating apps.Last year, a Los Angeles study found that men who used apps to meet other men for sex were more likely to have sex without condoms, to have more partners and to have STIs than those who found partners in more traditional venues, like a bar.

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Lost in the media coverage, which invariably focuses on the world of hetero romance, is the fact that gay dating apps and websites are beginning to innovate around STI prevention.“I personally think that dating apps should not be blamed and therefore should not carry the obligation to do STI prevention, which is a public health responsibility,” Marie Cosnard of that company, Happn, wrote in an email.She added, though, that her company is “currently thinking about ways to send out safe-sex messaging to our users.” Happn isn’t alone.That includes incorporating a testing clinic locator or allowing people to unlock their most recent test results for particular romantic interests.Luckily, if these mainstream apps decide to go down this path, they will have gay apps already leading the way.Ramin Bastani, CEO of Healthvana, an app that allows users to receive electronic STI test results, tells me that mainstream dating apps have recently begun reaching out to his company about potential partnerships to address this issue—just as media attention around the topic has heated up.

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