Category Archive: Thesis

  1. Thesis Production Calendar, March 20 – May 9

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  2. March 20-March 26: built out from comps
  3. March 27 – March 30: Populate Content.
  4. March 29: present to youth, feedback on features, branding (tentative)
  5. March 31 – April 3: Sex Tech Conference in San Francisco
  6. April 4: Commit to branding
  7. April 5 – 9: Figure out GPS functionality for “Resources”
  8. April 11: Thesis Book Due
  9. April 10 – 15: Populate GPS content
  10. April 16 & 17: Take off for work.
  11. April 18 – April 23: Populate GPS content and make website to accompany app.
  12. April 19: Present to youth (tentative)
  13. April 24 – April 30 – Thesis Paper, app edits
  14. May 1 – May 8: Final adjustments to entire project
  15. May 3: Thesis Paper Due
  16. May 9: Present Thesis
  17. HIV/AIDS & Social Media News Roundup

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    HIV/AIDS News

    • Personalized Text Messages Could Boost HIV Medication Adherence – “A personalized text messaging reminder service significantly boosted antiretroviral (ARV) adherence over a six-week period compared with a standard beeper reminder system, according to a study published in the March issue of AIDS Patient Care and STDs.”
    • Adults With HIV at Increased Risk of Bone Fractures, Study Finds
    • Maine AIDS Alliance Closing its Doors – “Maine’s only statewide HIV/AIDS advocacy group is closing in June after more than two decades of lobbying for patients in Augusta and organizing Maine AIDS Walks and World AIDS Day events. The Maine AIDS Alliance expects to lose state funding starting next year. Rather than try to stay open, the group says it will find a new organization to take on its advocacy duties.”
    • Indonesia: Closing brothels ‘won’t stop HIV’ – YOGYAKARTA: The National AIDS Commission (KPA) says that shuttering sites of prostitution will not stop the spread of HIV, but will instead make it more difficult to control the virus’ spread.

    Social Media

  18. HIV/AIDS News Roundup and I am in the press!

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    In other news, I was quoted on behalf of my organization (where I am a co-founder and community organizer), SWOP-NYC, in the Village Voice as well as at! For more information on the bill and how to get involved, check out this page and this short PSA.

  19. Thesis Revision

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    In the past few weeks, I have spoken to folks who work in HIV prevention/awareness and social/mobile media about my thesis project. My fears were confirmed in that this is all very new, people are excited about it but it is highly difficult to measure/evaluate the impact of such programs. I am questioning if my scope is too narrow, for example, focusing on New York City LGBTQI youth. I want to take a step back and broaden the scope because I believe the project has more potential for success and may provide value to a population I had not initially intended on targeting. While my research has proven the market penetration of mobile devices (including smartphones) in youth populations, the ability to incentivize an app such as the one I am proposing is complex and perplexing at best.


    • Find testing sites
    • Find Condoms
    • Get information on safer sex
    • Find a testing center

    All of this seems to be very possible already on a number of sites and mobile projects but not in one location. I am really wavering on whether or not it would be a useful tool.

    New Plan of Action

    It would be a subject shift, but same platform. I am thinking of a mobile app that can be used as an organizers’ tool for social justice organizers to connect with other organizations, but to also have a way to disseminate action alerts and meeting reminders so sort of innovating on what is working already on twitter….adding functionality such as meeting reminders and volunteer recruitment, maybe a social aspect.

    I say “social justice” instead of “global justice” here because I think in a future iteration it would include multiple languages and a text-only version as well as any other cultural nuances to make it pragmatic and relevant to the place in which the organizers would use it.

    The functionality would include:

    • Twitter API / including Twitter Feeds
    • Social component to connect with other organizations (“allies”)
    • Action Alerts – a way to disseminate action information
    • Meetings – a way to coordinate meetings and send reminders (It was suggested I look at Twilio and Beluga.)
    • Volunteers – a way to recruit volunteer
    • Search – search for organizations by name or by subject of interest ex. human rights, environmentalism
    • Fundraising

    Inspiring Projects in this field

    I had an interesting conversation with someone in AIDS research work who said that online petitions are out and  coordinated Twitter efforts are in and with measurable results as documented at the World AIDS Conference in Vienna this past summer. Four years ago at WAM! I was told the same thing. The worst form of communication are faxes, followed byonline petitions and email. The greatest impact was through phone calls. However, at this time Twitter wasn’t taken into consideration. For this reason, I believe the potential for social media and mobile technology to be a way to coordinate organizations and campaigns could prove to be really useful. The recent peoples’ uprising in Egypt is one impressive example of this.

    Production Calendar

    At this juncture, I have a full ten weeks but we’ll drop two weeks out of the calendar — spring break (though I hope to get a lot done) and the week after thesis paper is due before thesis week. By this point, only final touches and adjustments should be necessary. The project is essentially complete.

    Things to accomplish before then

    • Commit to base functionality
    • Wireframes
    • Design
    • Implementation / User Testing
    • Second Iteration / User Testing
  20. Midterm Proposal

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    For my midterm project, I will design the  mobile interface for my thesis project. I will work on the wireframe in the interim and start building out the design for the midterm. The final project will be the fully functional app. My thesis is tentatively titled Project Y.E.S.

    Project Y.E.S. (Youth, Empowerment & Sexuality) is a mobile web app HIV education tool targeting New York City youth.. Through education and awareness, Project Y.E.S. aims to increase knowledge, increase HIV testing, and decrease HIV related stigma.

  21. Cool HIV Prevention/Awareness Projects

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    Why Stand

    The ʻChoose to Stand Up” campaign was developed by African Services Committee in partnership with the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. African Services Committee has worked for over 20 years providing HIV testing, support and access to treatment for immigrant New Yorkers. And, while effective treatments have dramatically changed the fight against AIDS, stigma and discrimination against HIV+ people remain nearly as strong as ever.

    Cable Positive’s Youth AIDS Media Institute (YAMI) University (project has ended)

    Cable Positive’s Youth AIDS Media Institute University (YAMI-U) will teach young people how to leverage the technology they are using on a daily basis to engage their peers to disseminate vital HIV/AIDS educational messages in the form of a multi-platform social advocacy marketing campaign.

    Here is the NY Times article about Cable Positive: “Fighting AIDS, Peer to Peer” (May 11, 2009)

    Born HIV Free

    An international multimedia campaign around HIV prevention by The Global Fund. The goal is to eliminate HIV transmission from mother to child by 2012.


    Starting 26 October, for six consecutive Tuesdays, UNAIDS will introduce a series of themes related to HIV prevention via discussions on Facebook, Twitter, and AIDSspace and through YouTube clips, interactive polls and quizzes. As part of the initiative, five animated films have been developed as conversation starters.

    The aim is to inspire and encourage people using social media to know more about HIV prevention, as well as to make the keyword (or hashtag as it is known on Twitter) #PreventionRevolution trend on Twitter in as many places as possible on 1 December 2010.

    MTV’s Staying Alive

    Since it launched in 1998, MTV’s award winning Staying Alive campaign has become the world’s largest youth focused HIV and AIDS prevention campaign. The multi-media campaign consists of documentaries, public service announcements, youth forums and web content produced for young audiences worldwide. In order to reach as many households as possible globally, all Staying Alive content is available to third party broadcasters rights-free.

    The success of Staying Alive is owing to its retained set of core beliefs and values – that change lies in the hands of young people. If the dynamics of the HIV epidemic are really to alter, then it is imperative that this generation be informed and empowered.

    The Staying Alive campaign is a partnership between MTV Networks International, UNAIDS, UNICEF and PEPFAR. Staying Alive has also partnered with, SIDA, CIDA, the World Bank, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation among others.

    In an unsurprising coincidence, I ran into my friend Francisco Ramirez on the Staying Alive website in an awesome video:

    MTV-Staying Alive from Jason Wood on Vimeo.