The killing of George Floyd by police officers has spurred not only protests across the United States, but also — often embarrassing — responses from brands.
The queer dating app Grindr offered its own statement on Twitter and Instagram on Monday, coinciding with the first day of Pride Month. They will take action including not only donating to both BLM and the Marsha P. Johnson Institute, but also by removing their ethnicity filters for their next app release:
“We will continue to fight racism on Grindr,” the statement said, “both through dialogue with our community and zero-tolerance policy for racism and hate speech on our platform.”
A Grindr spokesperson told Mashable that racism has no place in their community. “To help do our part, we have decided to remove the ethnicity filter from the Grindr app. Once the filter is removed, users will no longer be able to filter profiles by ethnicity,” they said. “We thank all of those that have provided feedback. We listened and we will continue to fight racism on Grindr, both through dialogue with our community and a zero-tolerance policy for hate speech on our platform.”
Grindr launched in 2009 and has long had ethnicity filters. Ethnicity filters on Grindr and other dating apps have proven to be controversial, with some claiming they were okay to use and many saying they’re not. In 2018 the app introduced their “Kindr Grindr” campaign in attempts to “encourage kindness,” but the filters remained.
This decision to remove the filters comes after days of protests across the nation in response to killing of George Floyd, who died after a police officer kneeled on his neck for nearly 9 minutes.
A Grindr spokesperson did not clarify why Grindr chose to remove the filters now, as opposed to in previous cases of police brutality against black people.
As of now, the app’s Help Center will walk you through how to use its various filters. While the change may be reflected in the app on Monday, users may have to update to the most current version of the app for the change to show up.