Bumble banned body shaming. But what about Tinder and Hinge? | #tinder | #pof


The Internet has made most things easier or faster — including harassment.

Bumble, a cellphone dating app, found that 62 percent of users say they are more likely to receive unsolicited comments about their appearance online. Bumble markets itself as a “women-first” app that can be used for romance or meeting friends.

In January, Bumble officially banned body shaming by updating its terms and conditions to “explicitly ban unsolicited and derogatory comments made about someone’s appearance, body shape, size or health.”

The company will rely heavily on users to report issues through the Block and Report function, but there will be automated safeguards that help detect comments and images that go against community guidelines. Known hate speech, racist terms and language that can be deemed “fat-phobic, ableist, racist, colorist, homophobic or transphobic” may be flagged by the automated service.

If a person uses body-shaming language in their profile or through the app’s chat function, they will receive a warning for their inappropriate behavior, according to the new rules. Repeated incidents, or particularly harmful comments, will result in being banned.

“We believe in being explicit when it comes to the kind of behavior that is not welcome on our platforms and we’ve made it clear that body shaming is not acceptable on Bumble,” the app’s engagement managers, Charlotte Brown, said in a statement.

Almost half of the country’s online users have met or know someone who has met a romantic partner through a dating website or app, according to a 2019 study by Statista, a statistics-gathering site. By the end of last year, 75 percent of adults who use the internet said they had gone on a date with someone they met online.

Popular dating app Tinder’s community guidelines are similar to Bumble’s in that it discourages users from bullying, intimidation, harassment or sending unsolicited sexual content to any other user. But Tinder relies on its users to report it.

Tinder does not allow content that condones “racism, bigotry, hatred, or violence against individuals or groups based on factors like race, ethnicity, religious affiliation, disability, gender, age, national origin, sexual orientation or gender identity,” according to guidelines.

Hinge, another dating app, has slightly different language on its terms of service. Prohibited content includes anything that “could reasonably be deemed to be offensive or to harass, upset, embarrass, alarm or annoy any other person.” The app also prohibits obscene, pornographic or violent content, and any language deemed abusive, insulting or threatening.

At Bumble, moderators have the ability to educate people who have been reported by other users, according to the company. By sharing resources intended to help, Bumble hopes the offending person “can learn how to change their behavior to be less harmful to others in the future.”

Photo moderation is the next change for Bumble as it will review and update its photo guidelines, the release stated. In 2017, the company banned photos of people with guns if they are not law enforcement or veterans after an uptick in mass shootings.

julie.garcia@chron.com

Twitter.com/reporterjulie





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