The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Tinder adds STD testing locator to app


The popular online dating app Tinder has added a new feature and will now link users to a locator for free STD testing.

According to a statistic from DMR stats, last year Tinder had an estimated 50 million users and one billion swipes per day. With the number of users is expected to continue growing, Tinder added free STD and HIV testing locators on as an attempt to ensure the relationships created through the site are healthy and successful.

Whitney Engeran Cardova, senior director of the public health division for AIDS Healthcare Foundation, said that sexually transmitted diseases have been dramatically increasing since the year 2014. Cardova also said that the people mostly affected by these diseases are the younger generation, who are constantly using their mobile devices.

The Tinder feature will be under the “Health Safety section,” which provides a link to a disease testing association called Healthvana. Healthvana is a company that works to connect people with healthcare providers through cloud-based technology. It provides electronic features to patients such as delivery of test results with next step information, patient intake, reminders, and locators for nearby HIV and STD testing.

As stated on their website, the organization opened in 2014 and has delivered over 200,000 test results to patients across the country, with more than 80 percent of patients checking their results within one day of testing.

In September last year, the AIDS Healthcare Foundation addressed the risk of sexually transmitted diseases associated with unprotected sex initiated through dating sites such as Tinder by sending messages through billboards in Los Angeles and New York City. Tinder took this recommendation and reached out to Healthvana in order to improve Tinder users’ experience on the site.

In a Business Wire article, Tinder’s lead sociologist, Jessica Carbino, discussed Tinder’s pride in helping people create relationships. Whether a couple meets on a dating site or not, ensuring sexual health and safety is an important part in keeping the relationship working, Carbino said.

Healthvana CEO Ramin Bastani discussed the positives of dating sites like Tinder and how they help people meet quickly and easily. Dating sites amplify our ability to connect with one another, but that amplification could possibly be leading to the rise of infections that has been seen in the last few years, Bastani said.

“Either way, it’s essential for dating apps to help educate their users about their health and where to get services near them —just like Tinder wonderfully did,” Bastani said. “Many counties, states and other groups are looking more into this and will develop more information about what is happening in the future.”

When talking to CSUN students who use other apps, most said they viewed Tinder as a site for casual friendships and not serious relationships.

However, some students feel that Tinder’s new feature may be a beneficial asset to the site. CSUN junior Marian Ahmadi said she thinks Tinder’s STD testing locator could be beneficial to its users.

“I think that it’s good that they’re doing that to help protect people,” Ahmadi said.

She said that the benefits of this addition will depend on the actions individuals take with the information.

CSUN sophomore Maritza Soriano said she believes society should prevent diseases in any way possible and Tinder’s method is a good idea.

“I think preventative things should be there for people that want to do that,” Soriano said. “I don’t think it would make people any more comfortable when using that media.”

Some students felt indifferent about Tinder’s STD testing feature and did not see any particular change for the future of the site.

CSUN junior Juan Cardinas explained that STD testing can be easily found without the help of Tinder.

“I feel like having that feature makes it more awkward,” he said.

CSUN senior Reyna Albores had a similar opinion that Tinder is a site just for hooking up and people should already have knowledge about testing for STDs.

“I guess it’s trying to encourage that more,” Albores said.

Some students have opinions about the intentions of the site, but recognize Tinder’s attempt to make improvements.

“They’re probably putting it out there as a solution to it being a hookup site,” CSUN sophomore Mathew Green said. “I don’t think it will have an affect as far as bringing in users. I think for the people that already use it, it’s a good addition.”

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