Popular gay porn performer Austin Wilde is in the news. The triple x muscle hotness who was voted Raging Stallion "Man of the Year" has left that studio for internet-based NextDoor.
Wilde expressed concerns over HIV in the gay porn industry, saying too many performers are testing positive and that he now requires his screen partners to be tested for HIV, according to an interview in The Sword.
"Steamworks was my last movie, which was shot back in April/May, I believe. Around that time I had been finding out about a few people becoming HIV positive—both in and out of the industry. It was a wake-up call and a turnoff from sex for me all around. So instead of bringing my personal issues to the set and possibly giving Raging Stallion a bad performance, I decided to back out of the movie and take a few months to myself. ...
"I've recently started requiring my scene partners to be tested. While a test may not detect something contracted a month prior to getting tested, having your scene partners tested is NOT a complete waste of time. That month's time is A LOT less than six months or a lifetime of never being tested. So requiring a scene partner to be tested may not eliminate your chances of doing a scene with someone with an STD/HIV, but it significantly lessens it."
Austin Wilde's announcement comes at the same time there is panic in the adult industry around the so-called "Patient Zero", described as a "male performer who performed in both straight and gay adult videos" and tested positive. A number of adult performers may have been exposed and were quarantined, reports AVN. "AVN also learned that at least one production company has postponed its scheduled production [two weeks ago] in order for proper quarantine procedures and performer clearances to run their course."
In the summer of 2009, "at least 16 additional unpublicized cases of HIV" were confirmed in gay and straight adult film performers. The cases bring renewed scrutiny to the industry's long history of resisting condom use in straight porn. They also bring heightened awareness to bareback gay porn and studios that employ performers for condom and bareback gay scenes.
For someone that has sex for a living, reducing the risk of STD and HIV infection can be considerable. But on a practical level, it's worth asking if Wilde also requires HIV certification from his personal or "professional" off-screen partners. In any event, kudos to Austin Wilde.
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