Tinder Has Helped 250k in the Transgender Community Find Love, One Swipe at a Time

Tinder became of the first “dating” apps to include a “More Genders” feature, an update made in November 2016 to include transgender men and women, and now Tinder joined GLAAD on panel at SXSW at the Austin Convention Center to highlight some key findings.

Swiping Right on Inclusivity with Tinder & GLAAD featured Sean Rad, Founder and President of Tinder; Sarah Kate Ellis, President and CEO of GLAAD; Nick Adams, Director of GLAAD’s Transgender Media Program; and Zackary Drucker, Producer of Transparent. Together, the group discussed the importance of acceptance and inclusion for all genders, as well as the role of corporations and organizations in making the world a better place to live.

“Tinder’s inclusive efforts speak volumes to their millions of users,” said Sarah Kate Ellis, GLAAD President & CEO. “By welcoming trans and gender non-conforming people to the app and using the stage at SXSW to discuss the importance of that decision, Tinder is setting a standard that other platforms are going to have to match if they want to remain relevant and competitive.”

This conversation was more pertinent than ever, touching on topics from media to the political landscape, excerpts of which can be found below:

On the dating landscape for transgender people:

  • “There is a pandemic of violence against transgender people, particularly for transwomen of color.” – Zackary Drucker
  • “Most transphobia is targeted towards transgender women. Transgender men however, are invisible.” – Nick Adams

On the importance of the “more genders” update:

  • “To have a platform like Tinder lend visibility for the transgender community is a remarkable step forward in the movement leading to acceptance.” – Sarah Kate Ellis
  • “Some people were questioning whether this feature was a priority, but that is where we needed to set an example. When it comes to user safety, that will always be a top priority.” – Sean Rad

On the media and political climate:

  • “Culturally, transgender people have been marginalized. We have always existed but hidden and kept away. Being recognized in the media has been a huge accomplishment for transgender people and has helped for us to gain cultural legitimacy, but ultimately I don’t think we are yet seen as human, which is enabling these policies to take form.” –Zackary Drucker

On how “More Genders” has been received by users and employees:

  • “About 250,000 matches have been made where at least one user has identified as transgender, and there has been a significant decrease in user reports related to gender.” – Sean Rad

On corporate responsibility:

  • “Corporate leaders are in a way political leaders…we are representing an audience that is looking to you when faced with injustices.” – Sean Rad

On the future of Tinder and Swipe Ventures:

  • “There are big dreams that we have for the 5 to 10 year-vision of what Tinder is. One of the ways we can realize this vision is through acquisition. Companies that have the flexibility to think long-term and what I’m focusing on with Swipe Ventures…I don’t think we’re buying companies that would directly enable inclusivity, it’s more of a value system. We wouldn’t invest in companies that didn’t see the world through a diverse and inclusive lens.” – Sean Rad



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