Tinder, the crown jewel in Match Group’s dating empire, is following the lead of Bumble, one of its biggest competitors. This week Match Group CEO Many Ginsburg announced that the company would introduce a women-talk-first feature in a future Tinder update during an interview on MarketWatch. While Ginsburg said the feature would be released in a future update, she did not specify when we may expect to see it.
Ginsburg announced the Tinder update as part of a company-wide effort to “curtail bad behavior, any negative behavior or advances, and inappropriate communication.” While the update will allow women to initiate conversation with other users, it’s unclear exactly how the change will curtail inappropriate behavior since it does nothing to actually address those behaviors.
While Bumble requires women to initiate every conversation on its app, Tinder will take a different approach. Tinder will create an opt-in for the women-talk-first feature. Ginsburg states the company decided to make the feature optional after receiving feedback “that women don’t always want to be forced to make a move, so we want to give people the ability to choose.”
In addition to announcing a women-talk-first feature on Tinder, Ginsburg told MarketWatch that Match intends to roll out other female-focused features on its properties in the future both in the U.S. and globally.
One example of this female-focused ethos can been seen on Meetic, a European dating site owned by Match. The site uses women’s feedback to award a “gentleman’s badge” to highly respected users.
Ginsburg insists Tinder’s women-talk-first feature has been in the works for years and it’s “not a reaction to any competitor.” When Bumble was asked for a response about Tinder’s upcoming feature, its founder and CEO, Whitney Wolfe Herd, who also happens to be the co-founder of Tinder, said, “We applaud any company making business decisions that empower women.”
As the world’s largest provider of dating products, Match Group owns some of the most popular apps in the industry including Tinder, Match, and Plenty of Fish. Tinder is, by far, the company’s biggest money maker, pulling in 30 percent of overall revenue for the company from its premium Tinder Gold subscription service. Last year the company made a failed bid to acquire Bumble, one of Tinder’s biggest competitors with an estimated 20 million users.
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