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Grindr Blog

The official Grindr blog.
News and more from Team Grindr.

Marriage Equality: 0 Feet Away

Posted on June 26, 2015 by jack

Grindr for Equality and the entire Grindr team would like to express overwhelming joy at the Supreme Court’s decision today in Obergefell v. Hodges. The court has ruled that all states must recognize our marriages and treat them the same as those of our straight peers.

This victory is particularly meaningful for us because Grindr is in the business of connecting people. We’ve seen countless marriages, partnerships, and friendships grow up out of the community we’ve created and seeing those connections validated by the court is incredibly gratifying. In honor of the news today, we want to lift up the story of one Grindr couple who will be impacted by this decision.

 

My husband and I met on Grindr back in December of 2012. We both live in rural Minnesota and there aren't many channels to meet men so the app has been incredibly important here. Little did we know, though, that we would find our husbands through this app.

Our communicatio
n on Grindr was steady at first, culminating in our first date, which was incredible. I'm a shy guy so it took me a long time to warm up to the idea I may have found someone. 
We met a few more times, and more and more we opened ourselves up to one another. I began to realize I was really falling for him. Yet I held back, resigned to the idea that our connection was too good to be true. I lost his number and we fell out of touch.

One day I went shopping in the town where he lived, and as I was leaving, I got a flat tire. I didn't know what to do. The only person I knew in town was Eric. I went on Grindr and saw his picture. There was a green dot by his photo! I messaged him and only minutes later he got out of his vehicle with a small air compressor and re-inflated my tire.

That event rekindled our connection and we never looked back. Thanks Grindr and thanks to the Supreme Court for legalizing our love!

Jeremy & Eric
Married February 26, 2015

 

 

This decision represents a sweeping step forward for the entire country and we are so excited to see this day. But it does not mean that our struggle is over. Today as we celebrate, we hope everyone will also keep in mind how much more we have to fight for. In the U.S., we still lack federal protections from discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations like retail stores and restaurants. Beyond our borders, seventy-eight countries have made homosexuality a criminal offense and in too many places, corrupt governments are using homophobia as a wedge issue to distract from their other failures.

So today we celebrate. Today we offer our congratulations to Jeremy and Eric and all the other couples impacted. And tomorrow we continue our struggle for justice.


Grindr For Equality: Our next imperative

Posted on June 10, 2015 by Grindr Team

At Grindr, we are constantly considering how to positively impact the countless lesbian, gay bi, trans and queer people who struggle against so many outside forces to form the romantic partnerships we want – whether it’s family and societal rejection; racial injustice; economic marginalization; or religious bigotry. We want to help LGBTQ communities both recognize and move beyond the trauma that we carry with us no matter what country we live in and we’re calling on our users to show the same solidarity with our people around the world. 

This is why we created Grindr for Equality three years ago – to use our unique ability to reach men in 192 countries – not just for social networking but also for social justice. 

So far we have made the individual safety and wellness of our users our top priority. Activists in countries like Egypt have worked with us to send messages to our users in hot spots around the country warning of police crackdowns; we’ve participated in campaigns to increase HIV testing for gay men around the globe; we’ve raised awareness about important political elections and have shared educational information about PrEP. 

These have been exciting steps forward, but we are setting our sights on much more. It is going to require innovative thinking and a wide array of community-specific tactics. Our strategy is rooted in amplifying the work that is already underway around the globe and moving our users to join in and take action.

Under the leadership of Jack Harrison-Quintana, our new director of Grindr for Equality, we are building new partnerships with groups like the Beijing Gender Health and Education Institute (BGHEI), an organization working to raise awareness about sexual diversity and equality in Mainland Chinese society. In partnership with BGHEI we will make sure Grindr users in China have access to thorough and relevant sexual health information in colloquial Chinese.

Another is MOSAIC (Middle East and North Africa Organization for Services, Advocacy, Integration, and Capacity Building), a holistic program committed to improving the wellness of marginalized groups in Lebanon and throughout the region. Because Lebanon is one of the few countries who has accepted the influx of Syrians displaced by the current conflict, we want to make sure Syrian Grindr users living in Lebanon know where to go to get refugee services that are LGBT-competent and affirming.

While the international community is our top priority, there is still plenty of work to be done in the U.S. as well. The government still has no federal protections against employment, housing and public accommodation discrimination. So we are doubling down on our commitment even as we stand on what is hopefully the precipice of full marriage equality in the United States.

To achieve success, it is crucial that we keep up our momentum, so if you have an organization that Grindr for Equality can amplify, please fill out our online form. We are committed to creating pathways for Americans to reach out across borders and we will need your help.

Together, we can make a difference to advance our rights and win the fight to achieve equality worldwide.


#CallMeCaitlyn

Posted on June 3, 2015 by jack

As someone who has been working with trans activists for the last decade, I often tell people that I couldn’t have imagined some of the things that are happening now in the mass media. Last year Laverne Cox was on the cover of Time; this year a trans guy, Aydian Dowling, is in the lead of an online contest to be on the cover of Men’s Health; and, of course, this week Caitlyn Jenner became the first trans woman to be featured on the cover of Vanity Fair (and photographed by lesbian artist, Annie Leibovitz, no less).

Back in April when the Diane Sawyer interview first ran, we posted a few tips to help people make sure they can do so with respect when discussing Caitlyn. And we’re so excited now that she’s been able to take the next step to live her life full time as her authentic self.

I was struck, too, by Caitlyn’s statement that the Vanity Fair cover has set her free. That makes me so glad for her and it also underscores how much more we have to do. Just in the US, 1 in 5 trans people have experienced homelessness, more than half have been rejected by their families, and 41% have attempted suicide because of the discrimination they face. Globally, 1,731 murders of trans people have been documented since 2008 with countless more we undoubtedly don’t know about.

At Grindr for Equality, we’re committed to a world where all trans people can be free to be themselves just like Caitlyn, regardless of their socio-economic status, whether they’re famous, and where they live.

It’s a week to celebrate and it’s also a week to recommit to our activism. 

For more on this week’s events, see…


Grindr Stands with Bruce Jenner

Posted on April 24, 2015 by Melanie

Grindr for Equality and the whole Grindr team would like to take this opportunity to stand with Bruce Jenner. Almost all of us in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer community know what it’s like to have to come out and the courage it takes to be ourselves everyday. What fewer of us know first hand is the incredible pressure and scrutiny placed on professional athletes and other celebrities going through the process.

Now that Jenner has disclosed his gender identity publicly, we hope that members of our community will engage in respectful conversation that lifts up the trans community rather than tearing down our own. In the coming days, Jenner is likely to be a topic of conversation all around the country. This is an opportunity for us as gay and bi men to stand up in solidarity with trans women.

To that end, here are six tips for the days ahead.

1. Pronouns. Diane Sawyer clarified during the interview that Bruce still uses male pronouns for the time being. In the future, Bruce is likely to start exclusively using the pronouns, she, her, and hers, in accordance with her identity as a woman. We hope that everyone will do their best to use pronouns that reflect Bruce’s wishes as they unfold. If you hear someone using the wrong pronouns in the future, remember that shame is not a good teacher. Calmly and kindly just say, “Oh, she said she uses female pronouns now.”

2. Birth names. In the interview, Jenner made it clear that he has not yet taken a new name. Because she became famous under her old name, even if she does change it, we’re still likely to still hear the name Bruce. Standard protocol dictates that we do our best to exclusively use the name a trans person takes for themselves. Keep in mind that for many trans people, their birth names can be an extremely painful reminder of how it felt before transition and it is generally advisable not to mention birth names unless an individual says it’s ok for them.

3. Surgeries. Public discussion of trans people often centers on transition-related surgeries but there are a couple of things to always keep in mind. First, surgery does not make someone a man or a woman, their self-identification does. Many trans people can’t afford or simply do not want surgery but that doesn’t make them any less who they are. Second, there is no one “sex change surgery,” but rather wide variety of medical procedures that an individual trans person may choose to undergo. Third, talking about an individual’s surgical status is considered extremely rude, just like open discussion of anyone else’s genitals is not ok in most situations. Unless a trans person starts a conversation about their own body, this is a topic to be avoided.

4. Jokes and derogatory terms are never ok. For those of us who have faced derision because we were feminine boys or simply because of our sexual orientation, it should be clear why trans issues are no joking matter. Lets commit to kindly interrupting these things when we hear them among our friends.

5. No single story. Remember that Bruce’s experience is unique as is every other individual’s. The most important thing you can do to be in solidarity with trans people you meet is to listen, get to know them, and respect their unique story and specific wishes.

6. It’s ok not to be an expert! Just because you’re gay or bisexual doesn’t mean you have all the answers when it comes to transgender issues. If your friends or colleagues want to learn more, encourage them to check out the resources listed below. No matter what, you can always fall back on the simple statement that you do know you want to live in a world where everyone is free to be themselves. 

For more information…

1. About Transgender People by the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE). This resource covers trans terminology, personal stories, and suggested actions to take for trans allies.

2. Injustice at Every Turn: A Report of the National Transgender Discrimination Survey by the National LGBTQ Task Force and NCTE. This publication gives a short statistical overview of anti-trans discrimination in the US.

3. Transrespect Versus Transphobia Worldwide by Transgender Europe. This project gives insight into the situation for trans people all over the world through personal stories, tracking of violent crime, and cataloguing laws and policies on every continent.

4. The Trans Justice Funding Project (TJFP). Trans Justice Funding Project is backing some of the best trans activism around the US. One way to support trans people this week is to model respectful behavior towards Jenner. Another way is to give a donation to the organizations listed here. Our movement requires the commitment of activists and it also requires funding.


Happy Birthday Grindr!

Posted on March 25, 2015 by Grindr Team

Today is a BIG day for Grindr – it’s our sixth birthday! It has been an amazing ride full of new features, designs and additions to the Grindr family.

First and foremost, we have to thank our amazing users all around the world – it's because of them that we’ve remained the category leader ever since we pioneered location-based meet-up apps. From the beginning, we focused on a simple solution to a big problem, and Grindr hasn’t deviated from that path and neither have millions of dedicated Grindr guys. And even though our look has evolved over the years, the app is still the fastest, easiest way to meet guys nearby.

We’ve had the opportunity to partner with great organizations like amfAR and ORAM for initiatives through Grindr for Equality to advance gay rights internationally. Grindr has broken into mainstream culture and is regularly on TV shows from “The Simpsons” to “Broad City” and “Late Night with Conan O’Brien,” among others. Most recently, Madonna turned to Grindr as a launch platform for her latest album.

Since our launch in 2009, we’ve experienced explosive growth and today we have more than 1.6 million active daily users exchanging 70+ million chat messages and 5+ million pictures on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and Android. While the U.S. is still our number one country in terms of users, we have a huge global reach with guys logging into Grindr in 192 countries around the world with both Grindr and Grindr Xtra.

We have an accomplished and growing LA-based team that is continuously working to make the app easier and more fun for our users. Our team works with cutting-edge technology and are always thinking about how to tackle challenges to keep Grindr at the forefront of location-based apps. We are incredibly grateful to our team for their amazing contributions that make Grindr all that it is today.

We’ve recently updated Grindr’s profile and chat capabilities and in the future we’re working to make it even faster and easier for guys to meet. If you think you have what it takes and are interested to being part of a globally recognized, rapidly expanding pioneer app, Grindr is always looking for talented people to join the team and we pay top of the market for engineering talent. Come help make the next six years even more amazing.