Degree Date


Document Type

Dissertation - Public Access

Degree Name

Psy.D. Doctor of Clinical Psychology

Academic Discipline

Clinical Psychology

First Advisor

Penelope Asay, PhD, ABPP

Second Advisor

Gregory M. Sarlo, PsyD


The use of racialized preferential language (RPL) to advertise desire or lack thereof on dating and hookup apps among men who have sex with men (MSM) is a point of contention: might such statements be expressions of sexual liberty, or might they be manifestations of racism and discrimination in the online space? To address this issue, 561 MSM were surveyed regarding their dating/hookup app use; awareness of as well as sensitivity and receptivity to racial diversity and gender equality; and acceptance of racialized partner discrimination. Relationships among participant attitudes, RPL dis/use, experiences of in/exclusion, and demographic characteristics were elucidated, as were the foremost reasons behind RPL dis/use and reactions to the same. Frequency of looking for sex via apps, facilitation of the online matchmaking process, one’s attitudes towards racial diversity and gender equality, and personal experiences of exclusion appeared to underlie many of the relationships found.

Keywords: racialized preferential language, men who have sex with men, racialized partner discrimination, online dating