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Title:Digital Media's Promise of Intimacy
Author(s):Atienza, Paul Michael Leonardo
Contributor(s):To my research participant, Victor, who allowed me to use an image during one of our one-on-one interviews. Victor is a pseudonym.
Abstract:Mobile digital technologies are transforming how people communicate with one another. Worth $2.1 billion (USD) in marketing revenue, online dating companies target gay men around the world with the promise of immediate connection. When my research participant “Victor” started using one of these apps (Grindr), he did not receive the responses he expected. His time on the apps made him feel empty. “I saw myself having the same scripted dialogues with every dude. Like ‘hey,’ ‘how are you?’” Victor said these situations were more stressful than sexually liberating. As a gay man, I also use these mobile digital platforms to connect with other people who seek different types of relationships—romantic, platonic, sexual. These shared experiences with other gay men led me to study how these complex frustrations and desires influence interactions on and about dating apps, social media, and messaging platforms. My research seeks to understand gay men’s digital lives and their complex negotiation on and offline in the search for connection especially when feelings are amplified and complicated by race, ethnicity, class, gender, and sexuality.​
Issue Date:2020
Rights Information:Copyright 2020 Paul Michael Leonardo Atienza
Date Available in IDEALS:2020-04-13

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