Tinder is testing a new "social" dating feature that allows users to set up group dates. Tinder Social is currently running exclusively in Australia, but is scheduled to roll out globally in the coming months.
Tinder is a popular dating app that allows users to find potential dates (and some, true love) by signing up or logging in through one's Facebook profile. The app's GPS feature finds matches within a set distance of the user. Users are then presented a list of other Tinder profiles within their search radius and if they feel like they might connect with the person, users simply swipe right to indicate interest. If both users swiped right on each other's profile, a chat feature is enabled allowing for more personal connections.
With the introduction of Tinder Social, users can now create a group of friends, swipe and match through other social circles, and make plans to meet up. In a blog post, Tinder says the new feature is expected to "take an average night out with your friends to the next level."
Some users, however, are not too thrilled about the new Tinder Social feature which publicizes users' Tinder history to their Facebook friends and family who also use the app. When users click the option to start a new group, they are presented with a list of all their Facebook friends who use the app. This information also includes their full dating history on Tinder through accessing their profile. Users can opt out of the program by selecting an option in the settings menu, but since Tinder Social is enabled by default the data might be shared amongst friends without user notification or consent.
Users consider Tinder to be a highly-private part of their lives and having such data available and brought to light can be embarrassing or life ruining to many. Tinder dodged the privacy concerns by downplaying the magnitude of the situation. Tinder says it is only launching this beta features in select test markets. Additionally, Tinder claims the service is "not a secret considering 70 percent of users download Tinder because their friends recommend it."
There is room for Tinder to improve the privacy if it takes the lessons of the current test to heart and does not simply swipe left.