Authorities have previously warned teenagers, some as young as 13 years old, against using Tinder, as the connections that they make on the dating app could actually have them flirting with danger.
Tinder has a separate platform for users between 13 years old and 17 years old, as the service only matches these users with others in the same age group. However, sexual predators can use fake profiles to pass themselves off as a teenager, which places the young users, numbering in the thousands, at risk.
Tinder, it seems, is finally listening to the calls to take out minors from using its platform. Tinder VP of communications Rosette Pambakian said in a statement that the platform will be discontinuing the use of its app for all users under the age of 18 years old.
"On a platform that has facilitated over 11 billion connections, we have the responsibility of constantly assessing our different user experiences," Pambakian said, adding that this responsibility was the reason behind the decision to cease Tinder's service for users from 13 years old to 17 years old.
This will be the first time Tinder will block users below 18 years old from accessing it since it launched in 2012. Other dating networks such as Match.com, eHarmony and OkCupid do not allow minors to use their services.
The changes will take effect next week and, according to the company, it will only affect less than 3 percent of the dating app's worldwide user base.
According to Pambakian, the review on its policy of allowing users below 18 years old to use the service has taken place since early this year, and perhaps the warnings by the authorities and the clamor by concerned parents have finally pushed Tinder to make the necessary change to block minors from using the app.
There will still be the possibility of minors setting up fake Facebook accounts, which are linked to Tinder profiles, to continue using the dating app. However, with the policy change, it will be much easier to control such instances by banning the user from the service, instead of just relegating the user to the below-18 platform.
The new policy can still be considered a good move for Tinder though. It follows a statement released last week saying that the dating service will soon become friendlier for transgender users. These two developments show that Tinder is continuously improving its platform to deliver the best possible experience to its users.