Young people's perspectives on the use of reverse discourse in web-based sexual-health interventions

Davis, Wendy M., Shoveller, Jean A., Oliffe, John L. and Gilbert, Mark (2012) Young people's perspectives on the use of reverse discourse in web-based sexual-health interventions. Culture, Health and Sexuality, 14 9: 1065-1079. doi:10.1080/13691058.2012.714800

Author Davis, Wendy M.
Shoveller, Jean A.
Oliffe, John L.
Gilbert, Mark
Title Young people's perspectives on the use of reverse discourse in web-based sexual-health interventions
Journal name Culture, Health and Sexuality   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1369-1058
Publication date 2012-09
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/13691058.2012.714800
Open Access Status
Volume 14
Issue 9
Start page 1065
End page 1079
Total pages 15
Place of publication Abingdon, Oxon, United Kingdom
Publisher Routledge
Language eng
Abstract Web-based sexual-health promotion efforts often utilise reverse discourse - the acknowledgement and rejection of shame associated with stigmatised terms - both to challenge judgments about 'risky' behaviours (e.g., casual sex) and to appeal to young people. This study examines the use of reverse discourse in Internet-based sexual-health promotion and analyses young people's perspectives on this approach. During in-depth interviews and focus groups with young people (aged 15-24), participants shared their perspectives on written (e.g., clinical language; colloquial language) and visual (e.g., generic, stock images; sexualised images) depictions of sexual-health topics on the websites. More explicit styles elicited negative responses from young people in terms of perceived appeal, trust and quality of websites. Negative social mores were associated with some of the more explicit portrayals of young people's sexual lives on the websites, revealing how reverse discourse re-stigmatises young people by re-emphasising young people's sexual activity as inherently risky or immoral. Reverse discourse was perceived to have negative effects on the saliency and credibility of online sexual-health information. We discuss the theoretical basis for the operationalisation of reverse discourse in this context, and discuss the importance of considering sociotechnical aspects of Internet-based sexual-health interventions.
Keyword Internet
Reverse discourse
Sexual health
Young people
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work Publications
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Created: Mon, 18 Aug 2014, 13:57:04 EST by Vicki Percival on behalf of School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work