The One Love Campaign, which aims to discourage multiple and concurrent partnerships (MCPs), together with its multi-media health promotion and social change project partner, the Soul City Institute, has organised a round-table discussion.
The focus was on the role played by the media in "legitimising" MCPs.
The discussion, dubbed Sex, Soaps and Sensationalism! Multiple and Concurrent Partnerships in the Popular Media, drew participants from researchers, Aids activists, soap stars and scriptwriters.
The HSRC conducted a study in 10 southern African countries, where MCPs are common, in which newspaper articles and television soap operas were scrutinised.
Results showed that "it's not necessarily that if somebody is going to see concurrent partnerships portrayed in a soap opera, they're going to go off and do it. But if in their environment there is a lot of that behaviour going on, it's not unlikely that this type of programming doesn't raise questions about the risk ..."
Lebo Ramafoko, head of Media Productions at the Soul City Institute for Health and Communication, said the media sent a strong message in the way it portrayed MCPs.
"If you look at music videos, a man must be around more than one semi-naked woman. What does that mean to young girls? It's cool! What does it mean to men? It means to be a real man you have to be loved by girls. " -health e-news