1. Business
May 17, 2022

Singles use dating apps to protest Roe Vs Wade reversal

Dating apps users are lashing out against the US supreme court's leaked decision to overturn Roe Vs Wade, choking women's abortion rights

By Eric Johansson

Dating apps are big business. Bumble passed the 100 million users in 2020. It’s arch rival Match.com, which owns popular dating apps like Tinder an OkCupid, has over 16.3 million paying customers.

If you’re looking for similar business models, look no further than social media platforms like Facebook or Twitter. While dating apps are significantly smaller, their audience and ad revenue are still significant considering that their focus on romance. Given their similarities to social media platforms, it’s hardly surprising how users are often convey their political views on the apps.

The leaked US supreme court’s provisional vote about overturning Roe Vs Wade is no different. In early May, an unprecedented leak of an initial majority opinion written by Justice Samuel Alito revealed that the highest branch of the American judiciary could be about to tear up the rights of millions of women to have abortions across 26 states.

Following the leak, people are using every platform available to protest the reversal of the 1973 landmark ruling. That includes singletons using their dating app profiles to ramp up the pushback against the Roe v Wade overhaul.

OkCupid users have jumped on the opportunity to demonstrate their support for reproductive rights. Some 71% of Gen Z users and 75% of millennial ones have added a pro-choice badge to their profiles.

“[And] two million of our daters are publicly against the government defunding Planned Parenthood,” Michael Kaye, associate director of global communications at OkCupid, tells Verdict.

“The rules have changed”

Redditors have also reported that women are actively taking a stand on dating apps. One member of the social media platform has encouraged women to change their Tinder bios to say “deactivated because Roe Vs Wade was overturned – no sex without human rights.”

“Dating has different rules now,” the poster continued. “Sex does, too. Whether you were dating seriously or looking for something casual or for something in between: the rules have changed.”

Another user posted what looked like a screenshot of a Tinder conversation. In it, a woman told her match that she “would like to continue this conversation when my reproductive rights are not in danger” and that she was “no longer interested in either hooking up or even relationships at this point.”

“We’ve seen a 77% increase in mentions ‘pro-choice’ and ‘reproductive rights’ on OkCupid profiles in April compared to the year prior,” Kaye says.

Confirming the veracity of the screenshot is difficult. However, it fits in what industry stakeholders see in their own data. More interestingly, dating app users supporting the Roe Vs Wade overhaul aren’t as lucky in love as singles supporting reproductive rights.

“They are also ‘protesting’ people who don’t support the cause,” Kaye adds. “Users who say they are not against the government defunding Planned Parenthood receive 28% less matches.”

@moneymollusk

all the pro-life men who love plan b i am speaking to you directly #roevwade

♬ original sound – SHAKEYFUNNYAZZ

Moreover, people protesting on dating apps would fit in with a larger trend. Several women have made similar arguments on TikTok, warning that “If abortion gets banned hookup culture will be absolutely decimated.”

And these posts are being noticed. A vTikTok by user Moneymollusk has been seen over 278,000 times.

Not the first time

Singles have used their dating profiles to voice political beliefs in the past. In 2021, the phrase “I’m vaccinated” increased by over 1,400% among OkCupid profiles.

In response to the growing interest of it, OKCupid rolled out a badge vaccinated users could stick to profiles. Interestingly, singles flaunting their vaccination status could, on average, expect a 14% boost in matches.

Several dating apps also did their part to boost the uptake of the coronavirus vaccine. Bumble, Tinder, Hinge, Match, OkCupid, BLK, Chispa, Plenty of Fish and Badoo announced a team-up with the White House in May.

The dating apps/White House hookup would see the dating apps promote jabs by adding the previously mentioned stickers and offer boosts to vaccinated people’s profiles, noting how it helped people find would-be paramours.

Similar partnerships were rolled out in the UK, the EU, North America, Israel and Asia.

Dating apps take a stand against Roe v Wade overhaul

The dating apps themselves haven’t remained silent. Match Group and Bumble are among the companies that have publicly opposed the leaked overhaul of Roe Vs Wade.

“At Bumble, we believe strongly in women’s right to choose and exercise complete control over their bodies,” Bumble said in a public statement. “The safety, privacy, and freedom of family planning are critical to equality for all.

“We believe in equitable access and the protection of women in every stage of their reproductive journey. And we will continue to fight for the rights and protections of women all over the world.”

Match.com and Bumble did not return requests to comment on this story.