Dating appdates (Nov 2023): Tinder gets ‘rizzed’, runners hook-up on Strava, Bumble’s new queen bee and more

Tinder and Bumble dating app updates on November 23rd.

Are dating apps as we know them being slowly phased out of relevance?

With Tinder spinning its wheels to attract younger users and more people using non-dating online platforms to find love, the ‘swipe ‘n’ match’ method is looking as increasingly crinkled as the Millennial user base its success was built on.

Still, the sector continues to evolve, via a few lawsuits, the emergence of new scams, and a redesign or two.

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Tinder’s rizz-first redesign

With much of its original Millennial user base paired up and out of the dating game, Tinder is attempting to get more Gen Z swipers using the app with a new “Rizz-first” redesign. Rizz meaning charisma, as you no doubt all know already (basically some new animations and a new ‘it’s a match!’ screen.

A group of phones displaying a woman's profile on popular dating apps like Tinder.

A slew of new Tinder features have been released alongside the redesign. There’s now a dark mode, plus you can now fill in profile prompts such as “The key to my heart is…” or “Two truths and a lie”: a feature that has proved successful on other dating apps such as Hinge.

Other newly-added features include a profile quiz you can add, plus being able to add ‘basic info’ to your profile such as which pets you have and your zodiac sign. Tinder’s processes for reporting people for breaching the app’s rules have also been honed, allowing you to report specific elements of someone’s profile rather than their profile in general.

Will it help Tinder regain its cultural clout? Expect even more “rizz” as the app attempts to leap down a generation.

Strava is becoming an unofficial dating app for runners

From DM slides on X and Instagram to transparent attempts to meet someone for a date through ‘networking’ on LinkedIn, dating matches are made on plenty of apps and platforms that aren’t dedicated dating zones.

The latest to gain traction is the running app Strava, where you can share your exercise achievements and photos. According to Elle, despite Strava not having a private or direct messaging function, people have started using it to impress potential dates and link up with fellow running enthusiasts. “What’s your Strava?” has supposedly become a common pickup line among running groups.

A group of people riding bikes down a hill.

It is perhaps unsurprising that an app in which you post images of yourself looking toned in skintight running gear, and are able to connect with like-minded cardiovascular workout enthusiasts, has turned into a matchmaker. But it’s another indicator that people are looking beyond traditional dating apps to find better matches.

Moderating dating apps is still a thankless human task

Being a human moderator for dating apps is a thankless task, and a new investigation has highlighted how mentally tough it can get.

As reported by Wired, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism (TBIJ) showed how a Honduras-based moderator for Grindr ended up getting diagnosed for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Her moderating team dealt with reports in the app about sexual assault, homophobic violence and murder, among other highly traumatic topics. The moderator left her job in 2019.

The TBIJ spoke to moderators in various countries who worked moderating Grindr, Bumble and Match Group dating apps and services. Moderators said there was a trend of having little support for mental health problems that often developed, plus understaffing and productivity target problems.

While many dating apps utilize AI for moderation, the investigation is a reminder that real people have to help clean up the sewage within them, and they should be provided with the required support while doing so.

Match Group gets a civil money win

Match Group has clocked up a seemingly lucrative victory in its challenge against Google, in relation to payments in Match Group’s apps (such as Tinder) downloaded via Google Play.

After launching an antitrust case to gain the right to offer app users the opportunity to pay fees outside the Google Billing function, which earns Google a cut of up to 30 percent, Match Group won the right to use a new payment option called User Choice.

Via Google’s User Choice system, Match Group can use its own payment system and Google’s cut is discounted. According to Yahoo Finance the terms of the deal have already left Match Group $300 million better off.

The agreement brings to an end legal battles between Google and Match Group, with the former company previously trying to get $40 million from the latter to compensate for unpair commissions.

Seems like there’s still a fair bit of money to be made in the dating app game yet.

Bumble gets new queen bee

Bumble has appointed a new CEO following Whitney Wolfe Herd, who founded the ‘female-first’ dating app after leaving Tinder, stepping down from the company.

Two individuals are seen on a phone screen, engaging in a Tinder conversation.

Lidiane Jones, former chief executive of Slack, is the new queen bee of Bumble. She told the [paywall] Financial Times that she plans to use more AI in the app, and bring in “the next wave of innovation”.

Jones could add dealing with new scams popping up to that agenda. In India there has been a reported increase in female scammers using Bumble to meet men, then take them to a cafe they are in collusion with and run up an enormous bill, complete with threats that the man will be beaten if he doesn’t pay up.

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Jamie F
Jamie F

Jamie is a freelance writer, contributing to outlets such as The Guardian, The Times, The Telegraph, CNN and Vice, among others. He is also the creative force behind the Audible podcast Beast Master.

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