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Dating Apps Speak Out Against Racism, With Some Forced to Address Their Own Ethnicity Filters
Since protests surrounding the death of George Floyd began last week, many brands have issued statements and made financial pledges to combat racial injustice and police brutality. The world of dating apps is shifting its focus from promoting social distancing-friendly dating to address the pandemic of racism—but in some cases that means addressing problems within their own platforms.
Grindr’s initial tweet of support was quickly ratioed by replies pointing out its ethnicity filters. The brand deleted the tweet and instead pledged to remove the filter, and posted a page listing ways to support #BlackLivesMatter. Hinge announced donations to groups fighting racism and transphobia, but did not address whether it would remove its ethnicity filter. Bumble, which has no such filter, started with a statement announcing policy updates addressing racism and mental health, along with donations to the AAPI Civic Fund and the NAACP.
Racism and the dating game: OKCupid, Tinder and Scruff announced donations and support for the Black community—but they also have a variety of filters that critics are eyeing.
More on brand responses to the protests:
- Ford Motor Company executives sent a letter to employees Monday calling out systemic racism and the disproportionate impacts of the pandemic on the Black community, and pledging to create a “fair, just and inclusive culture” and improve the dialogue around diversity and inclusion.
- Haircare brand Shea Moisture is launching a coalition that will donate $100,000 to activists working for social justice in light of the protests.
- Despite other differences in opinion, Americans agree that small businesses deserve a helping hand: More than half expressed that they’d like to see companies supporting small businesses and retailers impacted by looting, and those donating to community cleanup following the protests, according to a new study.
BET Unveils Programming on Systemic Racism, Violence Against Black People
Black Entertainment Television is responding to racism and violence against Black people in the U.S. with programming that faces these issues head on. Specials airing this month will include “Justice Now: A BET News Special,” which will address the killing of George Floyd and the protests, the first in a series featuring Black leaders and personalities, to be followed by additional programming including a virtual town hall, a Juneteenth presidential forum and docuseries on police brutality and systemic racism.
Preview the lineup: The programming aims to empower Black Americans and tell their stories in this critical time.
Agency News and Updates
- Los Angeles-based agency Orcí is moving into a new era with Marina Filippelli taking over as Orcí’s CEO, with predecessor Andrew Orcí moving into a role as board chairman.
- Chris Neff of agency The Community came up with the idea for Fundi, a new platform that blends Twitch and Stripe so that viewers can more easily become patrons for livestreaming creators who host fitness classes, cooking shows, concerts and more. Neff said the goal is “to help all those talented and creative people in this time of need.”
- In a timely short film called “Second Chances,” U.K. agency Truant London asks viewers to consider the way they will be different when quarantine ends, and how they intend to work toward a better future.
D&I Summit: Social Justice for the Misrepresented
In our Diversity and Inclusion Summit last week, Curaleaf CMO Jason White talked about social injustice in the cannabis category, where people have been prosecuted for years for what was once illegal. “If we’re going to be a part of change, we have to make it part of our business model,” he said. “The sooner we stop with the stigma and let these marginalized communities feel that it’s a space they can step into, the faster we will advance this industry.” He offered these three action items for others in marketing and advertising: