(Like many of the men in this story, he asked that his real name not be used.) Within minutes of entering one of six AOL chat rooms designated for gay men in Atlanta, he exchanges naked photos with other men — some with their faces cropped out — and arranges a sex date.
What AOL lacks in steam rooms and towel-wrapped men it makes up for in steamy chat and naked pictures zooming across its servers.
But none of these has the reputation among gays that AOL does as the go-to place to get laid. “It offers an easier means to an end,” says Paul, a health-care analyst in Atlanta who says he visits AOL’s chat rooms nearly every day.
“I don’t have to get dressed up and go to a bar, drink, get my clothes full of smoke and wonder if anybody’s interested.” But avoiding the bar scene is only part of it.
You will also be able to see thumbnail photos of whose chatting in the Chat Room once you log in.