Dating apps are deeply flawed—we know this from study after study that’s shown that people don’t find the partners they’re looking for and even feel shame about meeting people they do like online. Plus, while certain apps cater to specific communities, like Jewish singles network JDate, gay social network Grindr, and queer dating app Thurst, no one successful, mainstream app has found a way to integrate and match users of all different gender identifications and sexual orientations—that is, until today, when Tinder announced the official launch of a new feature called Transgender and Gender Non-Confirming Update.
The update, which rolls out today in the U.S. and Canada, allows users to add more details about their gender to their profile if they want to. Rather than the original two gender options offered up until now, users can now select from 37 different gender identity options, including Transgender Female, Transsexual Male, Agender, Genderqueer and the option to write in your own term.
Tinder worked with GLAAD (the LGBTQ-founded NGO), trans advocate Andrea James, and LGBTQ activists including TV producer Zackary Drucker, actor Trace Lysette, and model Laith Ashley—featured in the promotional video below—to design and implement more gender suggestions for users with a mission of inclusion and openness. The change comes at an appropriate moment, given that November 14 through 20th is Transgender Awareness Week in the U.S. It’s a much-needed sign of progress and hope given what’s happening in our country’s politics, and hopefully other popular dating apps will follow suit.