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Use of ‘gay dating apps’ and its relationship with individual well-being and sense of community in men who have sex with men.

Zervoulis, Karyofyllis; Smith, David S.; Reed, Rhiannon; Dinos, Sokratis


Karyofyllis Zervoulis

Rhiannon Reed

Sokratis Dinos


There is growing literature and empirical work that is investigating if and how mobile phone and tablet dating apps are influencing the lives of their users. An online questionnaire-based study was developed to investigate how men who have sex with men (MSM) use ‘gay dating apps’ (GDAs), and how such use may relate to different aspects of their lives on an individual and on a collective level. The study included data from 191 MSM living in the UK with varying levels of GDAs use and reasons for using them. Beyond some descriptive information on use of GDAs, the findings showed that, overall, high users of GDAs report a lower sense of community, higher levels of loneliness and lower levels of satisfaction with life. Still, there is some evidence that those MSM who use GDAs mainly for sexual encounters report higher levels of self-esteem and of satisfaction with life compared to those who use GDAs mainly for other reasons. It appears that such GDAs cater effectively for those looking for sexual partners, but may have negative implications for those who look for other types of relationships and interactions.


ZERVOULIS, K., SMITH, D.S., REED, R. and DINOS, S. 2020. Use of 'gay dating apps' and its relationship with individual well-being and sense of community in men who have sex with men. Psychology and sexuality [online], 11(1-2): special issue containing papers from 2018 Preaching to the choir (PREACH 2018): an international Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning (LGBTQ) psychology pre-conference to the 29th International congress of applied psychology (ICAT 2018), 24-25 June 2018, Montréal, Canada, pages 88-102. Available from:

Journal Article Type Conference Paper
Conference Name 2018 International LGBTQ (Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer) psychology pre-conference, co-located with ICAP (International congress of applied psychology) 2018: preaching to the choir: moving LGBTQ psychology forward together
Conference Location Montréal, Canada
Acceptance Date Oct 18, 2019
Online Publication Date Nov 1, 2019
Publication Date Jun 30, 2020
Deposit Date Nov 12, 2019
Publicly Available Date Nov 2, 2020
Journal Psychology and sexuality
Print ISSN 1941-9899
Electronic ISSN 1941-9902
Publisher Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 11
Issue 1-2
Pages 88-102
Keywords Men who have sex with men; Gay dating apps; Community; Well-being; Sex
Public URL
Additional Information The original paper was entitled 'Use of 'gay dating apps' (GDAs) by men who have sex with men: different patterns and evaluation of such use in relation to individual well-being and collective identity processes.' in the original presentation at conference.


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