Quarantines and social distancing practices brought on by the Coronavirus had an effect on many aspects of society, including religious practices. For followers of Islam, the lockdowns overlapped with the special practices and ceremonies of events like Ramadan.
While COVID-19 was creating new challenges for devout Muslims, a social media service devoted to members of the faith got out ahead of the virus’ imposed restrictions and introduced a video feature allowing for virtual dates in the hope that love can still blossom while we’re separated.
Online dating service Muzmatch serves more than 2.5 million Muslim users around the world. Its new video dating feature makes the world’s first religious-themed dating app to include video calling.
According to Muzmatch’s own in-house surveys, 83% of its users had trouble finding a spouse because of lockdowns in their various countries. The video function will allow virtual meetups during social isolation.
According to official statements by the platform’s founder and CEO, Shahzad Younas, the new function doesn’t come without some controversy as video dating (and even dating in general) is rejected by many Muslims. Some followers would consider it “haram” or forbidden.
The crew behind Muzmatch is working to normalize online matchmaking within the faith to aid young Muslims looking for companionship during these uncertain times. As with other in-app video calling features, virtual communication is important for the safety of Muslim women as visual meetings in-app means no one must expose their phone numbers or sacrifice their privacy.
The new video function is free for all Muzmatch users and is permission-based, giving all participants complete control over their online security. ?Members choose who can call them visually without needing to share personal phone numbers or email addresses. Users can also activate and deactivate the video function at any time in every conversation.
Muzmatch designers promise no user will ever receive a call from a match without giving absolute consent first.