While reading a magazine article about the sexual inequalities women experience in the workplace, I stumbled upon the case of a Tinder co-founder filing a lawsuit for sexual assault. My first thought, was I the only one who missed this headline (apparently so)? My second being, how disgustingly ironic that a sexualized dating app settled a lawsuit for sexual harassment in their own workplace.
First off, Tinder – in my opinion this “dating site” is a joke. How can you expect to find a lasting relationship via cheesy pickup lines from total strangers, most of whom use the site for anything but a relationship (advertised as “casual” dating). The fact that the prospects users see is based on proximity rather than similar interests is devaluing the point of dating. We’ve all seen the ridiculous Buzzfeed articles of men desperately looking for attention and women choosing to play along for a good laugh – a laugh is exactly what comes to mind when I think of Tinder. Despite my opinion, it continues to be one of the most successful apps out there.
Tinder was co-founded in 2012 by two males and one female, Whitney Wolfe. In the lawsuit Wolfe claims that during her time at the company she was subjected to “sexist, racist and otherwise inappropriate comments, emails, and text messages.” Not only did her co-founders speak inappropriately to her, but the corporate supervisor stood back and did nothing.
The case has since been resolved but I think is (or should be) a negative reflection of Tinder’s brand. How can a dating app continue to get such positive reviews when the founders of the brand are reflecting such a poor image? More importantly, why is sexual harassment in the workplace such a reoccurring issue? This lawsuit in particular sparked a conversation about the common mistreatment of women working in tech. Hopefully Tinder learned its lesson – maybe it could apply a thing or two to change the policies its app promotes to spark a “relationship.”