I love Grindr, and not just because it’s all about the gays. (Full disclosure: I’m super gay.) The reason I love Grindr is because it’s one of the few location-based social networks to show sustained growth and user loyalty, and with that, Grindr is making a difference in the political realm through Grindr for Equality.
Founder Joel Simkhai dropped into our studio to give us a bit of a status update on not only Grindr but Blendr, the open-to-everyone location-based social network. He proudly announced that in the past three months, Grindr has surpassed 4 million users (with 500,000 new users in the last quarter alone), and 1 million active daily uniques.
Blendr, the gender-open counterpart to Grindr, has also picked up steam. The platform was criticized for being a bit of a sausage party, with very few women on the platform. But according to recent survey results from the company, around 60 percent of women and 40 percent of men on the platform have found someone through Blendr.
Joel and I also talked about his gay rights campaign, Grindr for Equality, which we reported on back in February. The project basically uses Grindr as a megaphone for gay rights issues in certain geographic areas, making action super easy by placing a “call your senator” or “call your congressman” button right in the app itself. Joe reports that Grindr for Equality is still going strong.
I also couldn’t help but ask Joel what he thinks of the recent Skout disaster. If you don’t know, three minors were the targets of sexual attacks after using the Skout location-based flirting app. Founder Christian Wiklund then had to shut down the app to minors.
Grindr, on the other hand, is only available to adults 18 and up, but with location-based dating being the focus of the app, it seemed that Simkhai’s opinion would be valuable.
He said that with Grindr, he’s struggled with the fact that teenagers aren’t allowed on the platform. “As I was coming out as a gay man, I wish I had something like Grindr when I was 15 or 16. It would have been great to have it. It’s not a decision we took lightly because of that. But I want to protect minors, and that’s more important.”