As the U.S. concludes its third decade of fighting to control and contain the spread of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), governments at all levels, health agencies, nonprofit organizations, and special interest groups have come to recognize the importance of communication to their efforts. Given that the acquisition of HIV/AIDS is a multifaceted problem, requiring a multifaceted approach to effectively prevent it from spreading within high-risk populations as well as throughout communities in general, the role of communication in all forms—interpersonal, mediated, and mass—has played and will continue to play a central role in increasing knowledge, altering attitudes, and impacting risky drug- and sex-related behaviors associated with HIV/AIDS.

As researchers have learned to target audiences, develop specific messages for those ...

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