Showing posts with label Gay Dating. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Gay Dating. Show all posts

March 12, 2020

BYU's Made U-turn On Gay Students Which Now Cannot Date On Campus Only Straight Ones

To the parents and schoolboard:
*How does gay dating in school offend you, didn't you date?-You have at least one kid! Should they date straight students and make gay straight marriages until the gay one comes out and have to leave and just visit the kids or sue for for custody?
*Why those parents feel their straight kids don't date and what good does it do their kids or the school to treat all students equally and with dignity(Is that christian enough?)
*Would it make you feel better if your kids become as homophobic as you?
* Did god call you to judge---I think not, if I remember the bible correctly and I do

We just want to stop being toyed with.

(See Savannah Skyler's other Tweets)

Students at Brigham Young University say they have "whiplash" after the school confirmed a ban on same-sex relationships, just two weeks after it changed its code of conduct to appear to permit them.

"Same-sex romantic behavior cannot lead to eternal marriage, and is therefore not compatible with the principles of the Honor Code," Elder Paul V. Johnson, commissioner of the Church Educational System, which oversees BYU, wrote in a statement to university students Wednesday.

The move appeared to be a policy U-turn after the private university in Provo, Utah — owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, widely known as the Mormon Church — updated its strict and mandatory code of conduct for students on Feb. 19 to remove a clause prohibiting "all forms of physical intimacy that give expression to homosexual feelings." 

Supreme Court adoption case could have broad nondiscrimination impact
Last month's update had been welcomed by the university's LGBTQ students, who saw it as an indication that BYU had further eased its restrictions on same-sex sexual behavior. While students have been allowed to openly identify as gay since 2007, they have long been banned from being in same-sex relationships.

Current and former BYU students told NBC News that they had spoken to university administrators after the code was updated and confirmed that as long as gay couples also followed the rule of chastity and didn't have sex outside a heterosexual marriage, they could openly date and show affection.

But in a Q&A with the director of the Honor Code Office, Kevin Utt, which was published Wednesday on the school's website, Utt emphasized that "any same-sex romantic behavior is a violation of the principles of the Honor Code" and was still prohibited. 

Students turned out late last week to protest the apparent return to the status quo, with two on-campus gatherings on Wednesday and Thursday in Provo and a larger rally Friday in front of the church's headquarters in Salt Lake City, where BYU students and community allies chanted "Let all students date!" and sang Mormon hymns. 

"It was whiplash — total, complete traumatic whiplash," Tiauna Lomax, 21, a junior who identifies as bisexual, said of Utt's interview.

Lomax said the change to the Honor Code last month had given her the courage to come out to her parents. She hadn't been comfortable dating women before that, because it was against school rules and meant risking being suspended or even expelled.

"I felt like I had an institution that supported me. ... The place I called home supported me, so I could come out to my parents," Lomax told NBC News.

She said the subsequent "clarification" to the rules two weeks later felt like a personal rejection.

"I sobbed for hours," she said. "It was awful to not feel wanted and betrayed like that."

Lomax hasn't ruled out transferring. She said that it's an option open to her financially but that she fears for other students who don't have the resources. The OUT Foundation, an organization for LGBTQ BYU alumni, is offering advice and financial support for students wanting to transfer. The group's fundraiser, which launched Wednesday, had raised over $34,000 by Monday afternoon. 
Summer Lee-Corry, 21, transferred from BYU to Utah Valley University last year. She identifies as queer and said BYU "was not a healthy place" for her. Lee-Corry said fear of being reported to the Honor Code Office and punished led her to avoid even platonic physical contact with women in public and in front of her roommates.

"I've had several friends die by suicide. If I had stayed at BYU, I would have been one of those statistics," she said.

Lee-Corry still attends church to serve as a role model for other young gay Mormons. She said BYU's attitude is at odds with her faith.

"They often call it 'the Lord's University' within the LDS Church," Lee-Corry said. "What I learned within the Christian religion was that Jesus sat with people who nobody else would sit with. How can we call BYU 'the Lord's University' when I know that Jesus would have been part of our protest, loving and accepting the queer students there?" 

In an email Monday, Carrie P. Jenkins, a BYU spokesperson, said, "The Honor Code was changed to create a single standard for all Church educational institutions that is consistent with the recently released General Handbook of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints."

Under a section titled "Same-Sex Attraction and Same-Sex Behavior," the General Handbook, which was also released Feb. 19, encourages "kindness, inclusiveness, love for others, and respect for all human beings."

The handbook allows gay men to serve in senior church roles, but it ultimately asks LGBTQ members to remain chaste, emphasizing that sex must be reserved for heterosexual marriage.

While BYU still asks students to "encourage" others to comply with the school's Honor Code, "encourage is not synonymous with 'turn someone in,'" Utt said in his Q&A on the school's website.

"We realize that emotions over the last two weeks cover the spectrum and that some have and will continue to feel isolation and pain," he said. "We encourage all members of our campus community to reach out to those who are personally affected with sensitivity, love and respect."

November 26, 2019

'The Loneliness of Queer Hook Up'

Wils' New Video Shows Us the Loneliness of Queer Hookup Culture

Raffy Ermac

Stuck in a rut when it comes to the dating game? Feel like there's no way to start a meaningful, loving relationship with a guy, especially in the age of Grindr? Well, you're not alone—Wils knows exactly how you feel. 
The up-and-coming, out, Singaporean pop star just released the music video for his latest track called "Empty," and in it, he explores how isolating and lonely the modern queer dating landscape can be, and what a struggle it can is to try to find self-love when all people want to do is hookup.

November 14, 2018

Chappy A Dating Application Now in Partnership With GLAAD Wants to Make Looking For Date As Easy as Flipping Your Finger


Chappy, the dating app for gay men, has today announced a partnership with GLAAD. As part of the partnership, Chappy will make a donation to GLAAD for each conversation initiated on the dating app, from now throughout 2019.
The company won’t disclose the amount of the donation, but said that it hopes to raise “hundreds of thousands of dollars.”
Chappy  launched in 2017 to give gay men an authentic, discrimination-free way to connect with one another. The app uses a sliding scale to let users indicate what they’re looking for in a relationship, ranging from “Cute” to “Sexy.” The app has more than 650,000 registered users, and has seen more than 1 billion swipes.
Chappy is backed by Bumble  and controlled by Bumble shareholders, falling under the Badoo umbrella of dating apps. Last month, Bumble named Chappy its official dating app for gay men. As part of that relationship, Bumble and Chappy will be cross-promoting each other’s apps.
Adam Cohen-Aslatei, managing director at Chappy, says the donations to GLAAD will be unrestricted, and can be used by GLAAD however they see fit. Cohen-Aslatei also hopes to contribute to GLAAD’s research projects, and said that he sees the opportunity for the Chappy community to provide data-based insights to that research.
Cohen-Aslatei joins the Chappy team from Jun Group, where he was vice president of marketing. He was appointed to the position last month.
“There are a lot of dating apps out there and a lot of gimmicks out there,” said Cohen-Aslatei. “We’re trying to improve the way the gay community meets each other and thinks about relationships, but also the way they think about their commitment to the community. We’re a relationship and advocacy app, and we want to partner with the right organizations to drive awareness to what we are.”

September 13, 2017

He Gets a Date On Line~and~He Saves The Guys Life On Line

On Friday night, just before midnight, Liam Blank was casually chatting with several people on Grindr. One person with whom he had been speaking, after about 20 or 30 minutes revealed to him that he was HIV positive. Shortly after the other Grindr user’s revelation, he told Blank what was actually happening: he was nearby, on the George Washington Bridge, ready to jump. 

Liam Blank
on Monday
A few nights ago, while relaxing at home, I started messaging a man on Grindr. The conversation started like any other, but then quickly went in a direction that I've never experienced before. 
This man, who is my age, revealed to me that he has recently been diagnosed with HIV and is struggling to accept it. At this point, I started to tell him that I can be an ally if he needs one. But then, he told me that he is messaging me from the George Washington Bridge and that he wa...
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“He was kind of trying to tell me to not come and to not worry about it and I was like, ‘Well, I’m looped into this already, so I’m not going to let it happen on my watch,’” Blank told INTO in a phone interview. 
Blank lived near the George Washington Bridge and sprang into action. When he got there, he saw a figure in a hoodie that turned out to be the man from Grindr. When the men in the hoodie turned to face Blank, tears streaked down his face. He had been crying. After convincing him to come back to his apartment, Blank and the man from Grindr spoke for about two hours and got his whole backstory. 
The pair spoke for two or three hours. Blank could tell after the man opened up pretty quickly that he was looking for someone to talk to. Aside from a recent diagnosis, he was 22, undocumented and had little to no support system in place. His undocumented status made finding a job difficult and obtaining education difficult. 
“I’m a little bit older than him, but I can’t imagine having any of that burden that he had on his shoulders,” Blank said. 
After hours of conversation, Blank made sure to make plans with his newfound friend from Grindr. His friend told him he loved spending weekends at a nearby bar, the Castro, so Blank offered to take him there soon. 
Since the incident, Blank has had time to reflect on what made him act. He told INTO that, in the last year, he lost a friend to suicide and that he wanted to try to intervene this time. 
“A friend of mine from college committed suicide and I spoke to him a week before he did it,” Blank said. “I felt like I really didn't go far enough in showing him that I was really there as a friend who could’ve been supportive.” 
He added, “I regret that now. When this opportunity came up, someone was making a cry for help, I wasn’t going to make that mistake again.” 
Blank eventually shared the story on Facebook, though he was hesitant due to the stigma of being on Grindr. 
“It was a first of me for talking about having a Grindr experience on Facebook, but that wasn’t that hard to overcome because it was such a unique story,” he said. “it felt like I had to share it.” 
Blank also said that he felt the story may have ended differently if, like many in the gay community and on hookup apps, he would’ve ignored the person on Grindr because of his HIV status. Blank said that HIV has a very personal meaning to him, as his uncle passed away from an AIDS-related illness. 
“When this person was basically making a plea for help, I felt that connection that I had with it — I had to do something,” he said. “I couldn’t just let it go or help from my phone. I had to take it past that.” 
Since Blank posted the story to his Facebook, it’s gotten over 500 likes.
According to the Trevor Project, suicide is the second leading cause of death among people ages 10 to 24 and LGB youth have rate of suicide attempts 4 times greater than non-LGB youth. Ninety-two percent of trans adults recounted having attempted suicide by age 25, as well. 
According to a recent study, people with HIV have a higher rate of suicide than those in the general population, especially those living in the first year after diagnosis.  
Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact The Trevor Project or Trans Lifeline for support or any questions—especially if you feel that you're currently in crisis.

June 22, 2017

No Puppy Love Here (New Data on Dating Sites)

Could love bloom between users of eHarmony,, and Zoosk?

New data from YouGov reveals the compatibility of singles looking for romance on different online dating sites

There's nothing puppy love about the online dating industry. It brings in billions annually, and, according to one report, the number of 18- to 24-year-olds using various dating platforms has nearly tripled between 2013 and 2015.
Recent YouGov data shows that the majority of people visiting the dating sites Zoosk,, and eHarmony are male. Most fall between the ages of 18-49, too. But that's not to say all online dating sites attract the same types of people — because they don't.
Consider people who admit to flirting on social media (11% of US adults do). When looking at current and former customers of Zoosk,, and eHarmony, however, nearly a quarter of Zoosk customers confess to this behavior, compared to 15% of people looking for love on and 12% of those using eHarmony.
The differences don't stop. When asked if they like experimenting with recipes, being friendly with the neighbors, and spending their leisure time relaxing — in other words, typical relationship stuff that can either make or break a couple — a variety of responses came back.
Current and former Zoosk customers appear the most adventurous in the kitchen, followed by eHarmony users. At 71%, consumers on were not only the least likely online dating customer base to say they enjoy experimenting with new recipes, but were two points lower than the general public, too.
At the same time, customers were most likely to report saying hello to their neighbors and knowing who they were, while eHarmony customers showed the strongest desire to spend their leisure time relaxing.
What do current and former customers of all three online dating sites have in common?
They're all more likely than the general public to find controversial or taboo subjects funny, and need time alone to recharge after being in a group setting. They're also more likely to show interest in starting their own business.
Most importantly, perhaps, users of Zoosk,, and eHarmony all report higher rates of self-identifying as hopeless romantics.

June 7, 2017

A New Generation of On Line Daters is Rejecting Hook Ups for Actual Dating

 Zachary Quinto

 Traveling, status updates, and long-term dating are in. What's driving the new generation of gay digital dating?

To British reality TV personality Ollie Locke, coming out must've seemed less like exiting a closet and more like walking through a glass corridor.

Like many men grappling with their sexuality, the 29-year-old initially struggled to settle on a single label like "bi" or "gay." But unlike most, Locke did it all in the public eye: After coming out as bisexual in 2011 while starring in Made in Chelsea, a British reality TV series, Locke eventually split with then girlfriend Catherine Louise Radford in 2016 and came out as gay.

Over the years, Locke would turn to gay social and dating apps like Grindr to meet other queer guys. But those experiences made him think the queer community needed a new kind of app, telling me that the status quo seemed "outdated and disheartening." 

"While there were guys looking for real connections [on gay dating apps], you also had to deal with the huge majority of guys that were there for a hookup," Locke said. "It became obvious this wasn't reflective of our community."

Locke isn't alone in his assessment. For some users of gay dating apps, a daily ritual can verge on addiction. And it only takes a quick scroll through these apps themselves to encounter guys who express dismay with them; statements like "deleting soon," "no hookups," and "no unsolicited nudes" are common in user profiles. 

That dissatisfaction is reflected in Grindr's 2.5-star rating on the Apple App store, where many comments echo the lament of one blunt one-star reviewer: "There are a lot of guys who use it for hooking up." Reddit, too, is rife with threads by gay men complaining about gay dating apps in general, and the culture pervasive within them—flakey conversations, rude users, rampant racism, and attitudes that reinforce negative self-esteem. 

Then there's rampant spambots and frequent glitches to contend with, which can sometimes make users' lives a living hell. By no means is this all exclusive to Grindr, but Grindr pioneered geolocation-based gay dating apps in the first place; as the first and one of the largest, it has had an outsized role in perpetuating the culture behind the apps.

That discontent inspired Locke to co-found Chappy, a dating app made available earlier this year to men in London, New York City, and Los Angeles. With a Tinder-esque swipe-left-or-right interface, it has garnered investment from dating app Bumble; what's different is that Chappy lets users toggle between categories called "Mr. Right" and "Mr. Right Now," allowing users to more easily weed out guys whose preferences don't align with your own, whether one is looking for dating or sex (or something in between). 

"The gay space has developed and evolved enormously," said Locke. "Gay dating apps have huge potential to shape gay culture; there's space in the market for brands such as Chappy to change some archaic perceptions of our community."

Chappy isn't the only app trying to distance itself from the stigma of so-called hookup culture. More established gay social platforms like Hornet and SCRUFF have recently charted a similar course, with a plethora of new features that spokespeople for both apps said are meant to introduce new ways to interact beyond hooking up. On Hornet, new features include a Facebook-style activity feed, designed to shift the app away from a purely location-based cascade of profiles and more toward a traditional social network; SCRUFF has launched a Tinder-style swiping interface for relationship-minded folks and a gay events and traveling platform.

These days, even Grindr seems like it doesn't want to be Grindr anymore, having recently repositioned itself as a "gay lifestyle brand." "Grindr has always been a way for our users to connect to the world around them," Sloterdyk told me as he summarized a list of new features he says builds on its core functionality: INTO, a new content feed with former editor Zach Stafford at the helm; a kinky "Gaymoji" keyboard; and ongoing initiatives from Grindr for Equality, the company's social good initiative. "We look at our role in our users' lives as the center of an ever-growing ecosystem," he said.

What's not immediately clear is what's behind the evolution toward more dating-, event- and platonic-focused networking. Is it a fundamental shift in gay dating, or lipstick on a pig? 

A certain line of thought runs through many of those complaints about gay dating apps: The apps themselves have made hooking up so easy that they've created a dating scene all but defined by casual sex—one that's possibly losing its luster.

But that view doesn't jive with the historical facts of LGBTQ relationships. From public cruising to "secret languages" like Polari, gay people have long used a variety of means to identify fellow queers, both out of sheer necessity and as a means of facilitating sex. In his book Classified, Harry Cocks, history professor at the University of Nottingham, implies that gay apps represent a modern development of the personal ad, a form of mating that's at least a century old.

It's likely the hookup-focused culture that helped gay apps flourish has long existed, and simply made more visible with the emergence of smartphones. That's what social demographer Michael Rosenfeld suggests. "I believe that hookup culture exists independently of technology," said Rosenfeld, who studies mating, dating, and the internet at Stanford University. "For people who want hookups, apps facilitate hookups. For people who want commitment, apps are a way to facilitate meeting enough people until they find their partner."

Rather than a fading hookup culture, a cocktail of other factors might be to blame. Newer features might be a way to distract from PR nightmares on dating apps, spurred on by those privacy, racism, and technical concerns mentioned earlier. It's also possible that platforms themselves are skirting their "hookup app" reputation as an attempt to court investors. Last year, after Grindr's rebranding, a Chinese gaming company owned by a straight billionaire acquired a majority stake in the company; last month, the same company announced plans to purchase the company outright. Hornet has also raised $8 million from Chinese venture capitalists. 

Apps may also be responding to a distant threat: competition from mainstream dating platforms like Tinder that could make gay-specific apps go the way of gay bars. It only makes sense then that apps would diversify their services, whether that means helping men meet partners for sex or single travelers connect with other queer men in the cities they visit.

"The reality of 21st century dating is that you're likely to swing between looking for something serious to something more spontaneous depending on your mood," said Locke. "For us, the future is shaped by offering choice, providing a safer and welcoming platform to connect with others."

So things that may appear as techy gimmicks—such as a switch to toggle between "Mr. Right" and "Mr. Right Now"—might also signify a more nuanced dating culture to come, one that recognizes how romance, sex, and friendship have historically blurred in the gay community.

By Jon Shadel, can followed on Twitter.

Let me just add that when you make a date to meet someone for that purpose it tends to minimize security risks and avoiding some crazies out there looking for easy targets. When possible dating is behind the meeting the equation changes. On a date you start to get to know someone and start judging of can happen or not happen in the future.   (adamfoxie)

December 19, 2016

How Gays in China Accustomed to Secrets Will Deal with a Dating App

BEIJING — Ma Baoli was accustomed to secrets.

By day, he was a police officer in northern China with a wife and a knack for street chases. By night, he led a life as a gay man, furtively running a website for gay people across China at a time when many were viewed as criminals and deviants.

For 16 years, Mr. Ma kept his secret, worried that coming out would mean expulsion from the police force and estrangement from his family. Then in 2012, his superiors at a police department in Qinhuangdao, a coastal city in Hebei Province, uncovered his website and he resigned.

His job lost, his family struggling to accept his sexuality, Mr. Ma set out to turn his passion for connecting gay people into an empire. He created Blued, now China’s most popular gay dating app with an estimated value of $600 million and more than three million active daily users, about as many as Grindr, a popular gay dating app in the United States.

Mr. Ma, 39, said he saw his mission as working to legitimize same-sex relationships at a time when gay people, especially in China, still face discrimination.
“In the past people wouldn’t even talk about homosexuality because they thought it was dirty, it was filthy,” he said. “The internet can help support gay lifestyles, to make people know they are not alone and that their feelings are genuine.”

Mr. Ma also sees a lucrative business opportunity in China’s so-called pink economy, as more people look to spend money on gay-themed social networking sites, entertainment and travel. The spending power of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in China is estimated at $460 billion per year, making them the largest market in Asia, according to LGBT Capital, an investment management firm.

But translating Mr. Ma’s instincts into an enduring business model has proved challenging. Like many popular technology start-ups in China, Blued is only beginning to make a profit; most of its services, including chat, live-streaming and a news feed, are free. Attracting advertising remains difficult, with some companies reluctant to be associated with a business that caters to gay people.

Mr. Ma has set his sights on foreign markets, hoping to take on established players like Grindr and Hornet. While Blued now dominates in China with more than 80 percent of the gay dating market, analysts said it would probably be difficult for the company to build a large following overseas.

“Culturally, people work differently,” said Paul Thompson, a co-founder of LGBT Capital based in Hong Kong. “It’s much easier to build up this real concentrated drive in one marketplace than it is to do it in lots of places.”

Growing up in northern China as the son of a factory worker and a housewife, Mr. Ma hoped to go to college and become a teacher. But his parents thought his dreams were too costly, and he was sent to the local police academy instead.

It was there, he said, in a macho culture that revolved around talking about women, that he realized he was gay.

At the time, in the mid-1990s, gay sex was considered a crime in China and homosexuality was classified as a psychological disorder. At the police academy, Mr. Ma took courses on criminal psychology where cadets were told that gay people should be viewed suspiciously because they were more likely to commit crimes.

“When I realized I was different from other people,” he recalled, “I thought I was ill.”

Mr. Ma turned to the internet for advice. But instead of finding a supportive community, he found rants describing gay people as lunatics and perverts. On health websites, he was bombarded with recommendations to seek medication and electroshock treatment.

After becoming a police officer, Mr. Ma was inspired in 2000 to start his own website,, Chinese for “light blue,” evoking the clear coastal skies of his childhood. The site offered chat forums and advice on reducing the risk of H.I.V. and other sexually transmitted diseases. Danlan soon became a popular way for gay men in China to connect in an age when many had been resorting to scrawling meeting dates and places on bathroom stalls, worried about the stigma of coming out.

At work, Mr. Ma chased burglars, filed incident reports and recorded public service announcements. In his spare time, he raced to the keyboard, writing essays for Danlan and chatting with friends under the pseudonym Geng Le.

Mr. Ma kept up the routine for more than a decade. He married, under pressure from friends and family. But when his supervisors confronted him about his website in 2012, he offered his resignation. His family was devastated.

“Both of his parents were very traditional, and they thought their kid had a really good job,” said Wu Guoxin, 38, a friend from the police academy. “There was nothing he could do.”

Mr. Ma’s relationship with his wife soon dissolved. His mother was stricken with cancer and Mr. Ma worried that his decision to come out had contributed to her illness. The family agreed to never speak about his sexuality again.

IN his new life as a high-powered technology executive, Mr. Ma still goes by the alias from his Danlan days, Geng Le. In meetings with business partners, he retains the deliberative demeanor of a police officer, nodding his head intently in silence, as if interviewing a witness at a crime scene.

In a sprawling office in central Beijing, where portraits of scantily clad men hang on the wall, Mr. Ma leads a team of about 200 employees. In one corner, workers scan Blued posts for illegal pornography. In another, a team adds Chinese subtitles to a movie that Blued produced in Thailand.

The company is trying to increase its revenue by expanding into gay travel and entertainment.

Mr. Ma also hopes to bring more advertising to the app, and he sees potential for growth in live-streaming features, a wildly popular form of communication in China. Blued has more than 200,000 hosts who broadcast around the clock on a variety of topics — music, dating, fitness and cooking. Some earn up to $15,000 a month in tips paid by users, the company says, with Blued taking a share of each payment.

As he works to build his business, Mr. Ma said he was also looking for ways to improve the lives of gay people in China. Blued offers free H.I.V. testing at clinics in Beijing, and the company has helped pay to fly same-sex couples to the United States to be married.

Mr. Ma said he was optimistic that long-entrenched stereotypes were fading in China and that within two decades, the country would embrace ideas like same-sex marriage.

He quoted his idol, the founder Jack Ma, in describing both the challenge of building a successful start-up in China and the struggles of the gay-rights movement.

“When I’m at my most painful moments,” he said, “I remember what Jack Ma said: ‘Today is hard, tomorrow will be worse, but the day after tomorrow will be sunshine.’ ”

Owen Guo 

September 17, 2016

What the Internet is Done for Gay Dating

For many gay men who remember life before the internet, a nostalgia exists for the days of bars, back rooms, and voicemail, before the rise of internet dating platforms that dominate the way we meet now.

We remember it as a more visceral and genuine time, and complain about how no one cruises in real life anymore, because we're all constantly looking at our screens. After all, the illicit sexual tension that hangs in the air of a gay bar can't be replicated online and doesn't quite translate to its heterosexual counterpart.

That said, I sometimes feel grateful that gay dating has gone digital. There are things I don't miss about my analog love life: asking around to see if guys are single, for example, or spending untold hours in bars trying to divine through body language and eye contact whether attraction is mutual. Today, that information about other gay men (and their bodies, and whether they're in an open relationship or single or into something like "pit smell") is at my fingertips.

Take, for example, this July on Fire Island, when I went to one of the daily tea dances. It was the first I'd attended in 15 years, since a guy I was hitting on there told me he and his date, both in open relationships, were leaving without me because "single guys are too needy."

But I steeled myself and went back, and to my surprise, noticed a cute fellow making eyes at me. "I can't figure out if I know you or if I'm supposed to know you," I told him. He said we had chatted a while ago on Scruff. My bad. A man stood firmly beside him, glowering at me, and I couldn't figure out their deal. After a while, I saw them on the beach, naked, arm in arm. I walked along the shore and sighed. But later, I checked my smartphone—a luxury I hadn't had 15 years ago—and saw them both on Scruff, listed as single. I had a nice chat with the cute fellow, and we made plans to see each other in the city.

The next evening I saw an ex—who ghosted me after five weeks of dating last fall—2,000 feet away on Scruff. I surmised he was at the tea dance (he loved it there), so I went back, and there he was. I gave him a cold hello and walked away—I just wanted to see him, since he didn't give me the courtesy of saying goodbye. Later he texted an apology for disappearing, even apologizing for apologizing via text, and I finally felt a sense of closure.

Without the internet, I wouldn't have discovered the cute fellow was single, and I would have stewed for days. And with a little forecast that the Ghosting Ex was in proximity, I could prepare myself for the encounter. (Believe me, I would have handled it much more awkwardly if it had been a surprise.) But even with the ease and clairvoyance that digital dating provides, is dating "better" or "worse" today?

There was a lot of awkwardness about how we met and dated before smartphones. "I remember seeing ads for a free phone line in the back of the Village Voice," Tim Murphy, author of the recently released novel Christodora, told VICE. He was referring to an early version of today's sophisticated sexual technology: gay party lines. "You'd call, and everyone talked in that fake voice: 'Hey, what's up... what are you into... I'm masc.' People would just hang up on you and move on. It was the beginning of that slice and dice dehumanization of digital cruising, where you could hit pound and move on to the next person. But at least back then you had to leave the house to find out what they look like."

For his ongoing documentary project Conversations with Gay Elders, filmmaker David Weissman has been recording conversations with gay men over 70 to preserve their stories. One, an 86-year-old Chinese American man, grew up in San Francisco's Chinatown. "By the time he was in his mid teens, he was cruising," Weissman told VICE. "And this is absent of any external context for being gay. Gay men just found ways of locating each other. It's pretty fascinating to realize that." As dangerous as it may seem for a young person to be exploring his sexuality at such a young age, it's also pretty heroic. Especially when you realize it all happened before bars or bathhouses—or WiFi, for that matter. And today, the latter is supplanting the former.

It's staggering to think about how quickly times have changed, and today, it's easy to take digital access for granted. I sometimes find myself flipping through profiles on apps without realizing why, feeling numb. This doesn't just apply to gay men—I've watched as my straight lady friends swipe with the same glazed expression. We assume it isn't really affecting us, but it's possible the effects are too subtle for us to notice.

As painful as it was to hear that guy say "single guys are too needy," at least I felt it, in the moment. Getting ghosted or rejected online feels suspiciously manageable; maybe we should call it a micro-rejection. Every now and then, I'll hear "sorry, you aren't my type" from a guy on Scruff, and I always feel a bit stung. It's easier to brush off, but there's emotional residue—one paper cut is nothing, but 100 can leave a wound.

"I don't think we've grasped how new and different this all is," says Weissman. "In terms of emotional and community health and self esteem. Like: What does it really mean to be gay? What is a healthy sex life? Am I really happy with the hook up world? Those are the conversations not happening in our community."

If anything, the internet hasn't made dating or sex less complicated than it was. And it doesn't make guys any less complicated, either. Lately I've noticed that cute fellow from the tea dance posts photos with the glowering man on Instagram, on intimate vacations together, with hashtags like "#alwaysandforever" and "#daddy".

Whether or not he says he's single, they're in love. Time to move on, but also to check in. And checking in with how you’re feeling—and realizing our emotional lives matter, both digitally and IRL—is a truth that prevails across all ages of gay men and eras of our culture.

Mike Albo

September 13, 2016

The Doctor Speaks about Open Relationships


 A  writes “The truth about open relationships” on  I can’t vouch for the Doctor but I can agree with what he writes because it is consistent with everything I’ve read and experienced on the subject. Growing up as the sexual revolution had engulfed this country in the 70’s,  open relationships were an option for many guys I knew. This is way pre gay marriage so you can understand why the option was appealing for many since we felt we were writing the rules as we went along. This option never appealed to me since I grew up in my teens thinking, hoping maybe that I was straight and thus saw myself ‘married with children.’ As I got to make gay friends I learned there was an option and to be completely honest it was a better option than getting involved and then cheating and hiding boyfriends on the side. Particularly when I came out to my mom at 24, I thought it would be such a burden to be in a relationship and then having to keep secrets on the side that the whole process of coming out would have very little meaning to me since I wanted to be honest about who I was and wanted an end to the lies and made up stories. Neither way rep[resented who I was but was open minded enough to accept it on people I surrounded my self with but saw guys who tried to have serious multi relationships and saw them failed at all of them. I thought that one monogamous relationship took a lot of time, commitment and love to make it last.

Having same sex marriage which is a serious commitment with two people and it would take very special people to ignore the vows made to bring others into the circle.


The longer you’re in a relationship, the less sex you’re going to have.“ At least that’s according to sex sociologist and author of The Monogamy Gap, Dr. Eric Anderson. The thing is, he’s right. Ask anyone who’s been in a relationship longer than five years and they can easily point to the decline. Does that mean the relationship is no longer working or the couple needs to “spice things up“? Maybe they should just secretly subscribe to porn sites and hire hookers. This has long been the heterosexual model, but is it the best option?

Monogamy didn’t come into fashion until fairly late in human history, born out of the notion that wives and children were the property of the husband, according to Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jethá in their book Sex at Dawn: The Prehistoric Origins of Modern Sexuality. Now it’s firmly a part of heterosexual culture (at least the appearance of monogamy is).

Gay couples have long pioneered an alternative route: open relationships. Approximately 50% of gay male relationships are “open“—meaning there is sex outside the relationship with the partner’s knowledge and approval—according to a San Francisco State study published in 2010. But will this number remain the same now that gays can get hitched the way their parents did?

According to the latest Gallop poll, 49% of all gay couples living together are now legally married. But other research has shown those in same-sex marriages often start to copy the “traditional“ hetero mold,  meaning when they say “I do,“ they think they have to say “I don’t“ to sex with others.

Whether gay or straight, couples often see a declining sexual relationship as a negative. But is it? “Instead of recognizing [decreasing sex] as a product of a failed relationship,“ Anderson asserts, “We actually need to recognize [decreasing sex] as a product of an improving relationship.“ Could he be right? Could every long-term relationship in America just be improving?

“Sexually open relationships have better marital happiness rates, longer marriages, greater satisfaction in marriages,“ according to Anderson, to which he adds, “That doesn’t come through spicing up the sex another way with the same partner for year after year. That type of sexual novelty comes with a new body.“

It seems gay couples know just that. According to a 2013 University of Michigan study, 42% of open gay couples are “early adopters“ and open things up in the first three months. But most gay couples move a bit slower, starting out with a period of monogamy, slowly opening up to having sex with others. Most gay couples take an average of five to seven years to make it official.

If things have slowed down in your bedroom and you are thinking about talking with your partner about opening things up, consider the following:

1. Start with a Strong Foundation
Opening things up sexually does not signal a faltering union, but it is a sure-fire way to hasten its demise if the relationship is already in a weakened state. Don’t do it if there is any question about the solidity of your relationship. This is not a remedy; it’s an adventure. Make sure your relationship house is always something that draws both of you back home.

2. Ponder Your Personality
Those who do best in open relationships tend to be more creative, non-conforming and individualistic people who are less concerned about the opinions of others and more concerned about their own values and ethics. But it can’t be all about you. You need to be able to communicate and work out relationship problems—something those in monogamous relationships often struggle with doing effectively.

3. Are You Jealous or Joyous?
Consider how you handle knowing your partner is with another. Does it turn you on and excite you? Or are you threatened and scared? Those who are able to successfully manage multiple partners often have a character trait that those in the polyamory community call compersion. Compersion is really the opposite of jealousy and refers to a feeling of delight when your partner experiences the joy of intimacy with another. If either person feels jealousy or fear, then it’s important to manage it and not blame your partner. If you can’t, an open relationship is not for you.

4. Forge Agreements (Not Demands)
Assume nothing. Rules that two people make together are agreements. Rules that one person makes and assumes the other should follow are demands. Agreements lead to openness and trust and are likely to be followed. Demands lead to lying, hiding and rebellion. Make sure you work together and create only agreements regarding both sexual and emotional boundaries. In addition, figure out how much you are going to tell each other and how much you will share with others about your extra-curricular activities. Be frank and specific about everything.

5. Make Sure Your Agreements Cover All Bases
WHO are you both allowed to “encounter?“ Other coupled guys? Three-ways only? Anonymous? No friends? WHAT acts are you cool with your partner doing? JO only? Anal? Safer sex? Top or Bottom? Condoms or Bareback? Overnights? WHEN is it OK to have your “extra helpings“? Only when one of you is out of town? Only when together at a bar or bathhouse? Only on Sundays? Anytime? WHERE can you step outside? Only outside the home? Only at home? Everywhere at home but in the bed we share? Only at the Republican Convention? Anywhere? HOW are you allowed to meet others? Apps like Grindr and Scruff? Face pics allowed? Only in bars? Only chance meetings? However the hell we can?!

Don’t stop the talk. Reassess all of your agreements at regular intervals; not everything you set up in the beginning is going to work. This process may take more time than you think, and it may be made easier with the help of an informed and sympathetic therapist.

May 6, 2016

Online Dating Guide Video

May 3, 2016

The Ugly Side of Gay Dating

 A FEW days ago, a clothing item marketed towards gay men created a stir of outrage.
Marek+Richard, an online fashion label that specialises in clothes for gay men, sold a black tank top with the words “NO FAT, NO FEMS” written in large white letters.
Seriously, who would pay for this? A lot of guys, apparently.
Seriously, who would pay for this? A lot of guys, apparently.Source:Supplied
It’s one of many common, shallow phrases used in the wide, wonderful world of gay dating. Translation? “Don’t talk to me if you’re overweight or a man who doesn’t act stereotypically masculine.”
Download Grindr or Scruff (the gay-but-slightly-more-risque equivalents of Tinder) and every few profile bios you read will bear one of the following messages:
• Masc only, NO fags (Translation: You must act like a conventional straight male, even though you’re here to have sex with a man)
• Don’t sissy that walk (Translation: You must act like a conventional straight male, even though I’m the one quoting RuPaul)
• No rice, no spice, no chocolate (Translation: No Asians, No Indians, No Blacks)
• Gook free zone, sorry not racist just a preference (Translation: Sorry, I’m racist)
Ahhh, the poetic musings of the trademark “Sydney gay” — a thriving and fascinating species of homosexual wildlife usually spotted donning a backwards flat cap and a Country Road gym bag, with a default facial expression you might wear if you’d just swallowed a gallon of sour lemon juice in one gulp.
These screenshots, from the ‘Douchebags of Grindr’ Tumblr account, say it all.
These screenshots, from the ‘Douchebags of Grindr’ Tumblr account, say it all.Source:Supplied
‘Douchebags of Grindr’ is kind of like a Hall of Fame of these sorts of guys.
‘Douchebags of Grindr’ is kind of like a Hall of Fame of these sorts of guys.Source:Supplied
 You’re too feminine. You’re too ethnic. You’re too fat. You’re too skinny. You’re too old. You’re too Asian. Ironically, unapologetic discrimination is so common in the gay world that it’s almost excusable.
Why is this so surprising? Because no group campaigns for equality, love and inclusiveness harder than the gay community. How can a movement that’s so heartwarming and positive consist of people so lacking in basic social etiquette?
Dr Anthony Lambert, a senior lecturer in cultural studies at Macquarie University, firstly stressed that you can’t just assume a minority group is automatically going to be ethical. It’s a lot of pressure, and never the case.
But he told this shallow mindset has always been amplified in the gay community, saying internalised homophobia plays a big part.
“The image of the muscly white guy in the ‘No Fats No Fems’ shirt is the same white jock who was bullying the gay guy in high school,” he said. “You internalise it to begin with.”
He said that this, combined with the rise in social media and dating apps, has only made the problem worse, because hiding behind a device can take the humanity out of people.
But it was an issue long before social media was a thing.
“I remember going to a nightclub in the 80s and offering to buy someone a drink,” he said. “And the response I got was, ‘I’m looking for a man, not a queen.’ I just walked away.”
Jack from Will & Grace would be many gay men’s worst nightmare.
Jack from Will & Grace would be many gay men’s worst nightmare.Source:Supplied
Judging by the standard on dating apps today, little has changed.
Which is strange, because in today’s metro-hipster age where guys will increasingly pay for Salim Mehajer-thin eyebrows and beard-groomers, the behavioural differences between “gay” and “straight” seem to have become few and far between.
I don’t understand why some gay men need to stress how “masculine” they are.
Behaviour is just the beginning.
A 2015 study in the Archives of Sexual Behaviour looked into how gay men stereotype by race. It found that black men are seen as masculine “tops” (that’s, uh, the “giver”) and Asian men are seen as feminine “bottoms” (receivers). And to be associated with the latter is worse — you’re not masculine, you’re not white, therefore you’re not desirable.
As a gay male living in the heart of Sydney, I’ve heard it all. On one occasion, I met up for drinks with a guy I’d only spoken to online.
“Oh,” he said, as we sat down.
“What’s wrong?” I asked.
“Nothing. I just expected you to be more ... Caucasian.” He’d already lost interest, and never got in touch again. Curse my deceptively-white name. That was clearly a jackpot find.
Another time, it was slightly less subtle; a guy at a bar outright told me: “You’d be cute if you were more white.”
I didn’t even know how to respond to that, other than to shake my inferior melanin-soaked fist at the merciless Australian sun. Last month, the Sydney Star Observer ran a great featureon racism within the gay community. They interviewed a handful of gay men of diverse backgrounds who had some brutal accounts on the matter.
One guy, Aziz Abu-Bakr, told the Star Observer that stereotypes surrounding the African community run rampant when he’s on dating apps.
“People always ask me if it’s true what they’ve heard about black men and refer to me as things like exotic, words that would be more fitting for an animal than a human being,” he said.
“Weirdly enough they perceive it as complimenting me… they’re like, ‘Oh, I’m this white gay man, you should feel blessed that I’m giving you this attention.’
Another respondent, Mohammed Taha, said many gay men don’t accept or understand that marginalised communities can indeed discriminate.
“So often (gay white men) just don’t believe that other people exist, they live in their bubbles where everyone looks like them.”
So, what needs to change?
Dr. Lambert says it’s all about education. He said whether it’s dating apps providing a guide, or a sign being posted on the back of a bathroom stall door, we need to promote ethics around the right and wrong way to communicate with somebody.
“I don’t want Big Brother censorship,” he said. “But these social media sites should offer ethical direction. ‘No Fat, No Fem, No Asian’ is on the wrong side of history.”
He emphasised that it’s fine to have different tastes. Not everyone can be attracted to everyone else, and the simple act of declining someone does not and should not make you racist. But, he says, there’s a right and wrong way to frame it.
“We live in a country that’s said, ‘Stop the boats.’ If I see ‘No Asians’ that means something. It speaks to a larger story about what we perceive as a society. It’s not fair and it’s not right.
“It wouldn’t hurt for us to have the occasional image that says, ‘Yes fat, yes fem, yes Asian. What’s your problem? Do you need to discriminate to express yourself?’”
For what it’s worth, the clothing label behind the “No Fat No Fems” shirt later released a statement, claiming it was all satire from the get-go. 
Considering their choice of model, and the timing of their “clarification”, I most definitely call bulls**t on that.
But hey, it speaks volumes that the singlet has sold out in all sizes. If I see you at a bar and you’re wearing it, feel free to not start a conversation with me.
Just my preference.

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