Tinder Introduces Celebrity Verification, Tinder Users Go "Huh?"
I suppose we should have seen this one coming, but that’s not making it any less facepalm-worthy. Following in Twitter’s footsteps, Tinder is rolling out a verification system for celebrity users. There’s just one problem: Tinder’s actual users don’t really understand why.
According to Tinder’s CEO, Sean Rad, speaking to TIME, “We’ve had celebrities reach out to us frequently throughout the last year, sort of calling out various frustrations convincing users that they were actually who they are.” Rad elaborated, “One impediment is that sometimes their Facebook accounts, which we pull information from, include different names than their actual likeness… so [celebrities] were asking for the ability to modify their Tinder name and maybe have a verified badge.”
Verification makes sense on things like Twitter because it’s one of the ways that celebrities sell their brand. Tinder, however, is a hookup app, so unless the brand you’re selling is one with the message, “Hey, I’m famous! Watch me bang as many people as humanly possible!”, it doesn’t really serve the same purpose. The Daily Beast — which, interestingly, shares a parent company with Tinder, IAC — might have put it best when they asked, “What actual celebrities are taking time out of their day to a) cruise Tinder without fear of getting caught and b) call up and complain about not getting special treatment?” Want an answer? The Hollywood Reporter seems to have something resembling one; according to them, the app has “become popular among a set that includes Jamie Kennedy, Lindsay Lohan, and Ashton Kutcher.” Sooooo… pretty much the kind of celebrities you would expect to engage in that sort of behavior.
And neither do the normals who use Tinder think it’s a good idea. Said a 30-year-old user named Denis Fabre to the Daily Beast, “The magic of Tinder is that when you have a match, you don’t know anything about that person, and people love the anonymity. It seems like this move toward verification was only announced to make the company look sexier, and to make people believe they have the chance to meet a star. It’s a joke.” Added another user, 21-year-old Emi Suzuki (whose name my computer tried to auto-correct to Emu – sorry, Emi!), “Verification is an awful idea. It just inflates the ego of the verified user and allows them to think that their dick is longer with every follow, like, or match they get.”
Ayyyyyyy-men to that. I’ve never used Tinder; I’m not dating right now, so I’ve got no use for it. But even if I were playing the field, I’m not sure this whole “you could hook up with a star!” thing would convince me to hop on the bandwagon. Something about it just seems so… tacky.
But maybe that’s just me…