The Digital Disruptors: Can Whitney Wolfe repeat the success of Tinder with her dating app Bumble where women take the lead?
Women who use online dating websites often complain of receiving unwanted, unsolicited photographs of "crotch shots" from men. The practice has become so common that many women don't even consider it harassment - many consider it a mere annoyance, a necessary evil in the modern cyber quest for love. Whitney Wolfe, a co-founder of dating app Tinder, says she wants her new company to disrupt the sector, and cut back on the amount of online harassment directed towards women.
Tinder Co-Founder Whitney Wolfe on Bumble: Her new feminist dating app that lets women make the first move.
Whitney Wolfe tells Phoebe Luckhurst why her new feminist matchmaking app is going to even out the romantic playing field.
Whitney Wolfe is defending dating apps and hook-up culture. “What do you think people do when they go out to bars on a Friday night?” she says, clearly frustrated. “While you’re in a bar you could meet the love of your life — but there’s a good chance you’re going to hear about someone going home for a one-night stand. If you use an app to have your one-night stand, or you use the app to get married that’s entirely up to you. And if a man and a woman want to hook-up — good for them. Own it.”
Bumble is on somewhat of a hot streak. The dating app, which has women initiate all of the conversations, originally launched nine months ago. After reaching 1,000,000 unique conversations in early June, the app now reports that just two months later, over 5,000,000 conversations have been started by women.
Following Tinder co-founder Whitney Wolfe’s dramatic departure—she sued the company for sexual harassment and published her text conversations with fellow co-founder Justin Mateen as evidence—the 26-year-old hasn’t retreated from the online dating space. In fact she‘s set out to remake the entire premise. (Wolfe and Tinder have since settled their lawsuit, and Mateen is no longer with the company.) Wolfe’s current venture is Bumble, a self-proclaimed feminist dating app where women have to make the first move.