Online dating has become an increasingly popular medium for finding romantic interests. Facebook capitalized on the trend, creating Facebook Dating. However, the service has only been available in 19 countries. In a post on Facebook, the social media company announced Facebook Dating will be available now in the US.
Facebook Dating will be connected, but separate, from your Facebook and Instagram accounts. 18-year or older users will be allowed to create a Facebook Dating specific profile. On the profile, you have full control of what you share, including your Facebook or Instagram stories, Instagram posts, and Facebook pictures.
Once viewing another person’s profile, you can choose to let them know of your interest by “liking” their profile directly or even sending comments on pictures to start a conversation. Alternatively, if you have a crush on a Facebook friend or someone you follow on Instagram, you can send them a “Secret Crush.” If they’ve created a Facebook Dating account, they’ll be notified that someone has a crush on them but won’t know who it is unless they also secretly crush on you.
Given that online dating can be a scary place for some, Facebook Dating has made an effort to make the service as safe, secure and private as possible. In a separate blog post, the company outlined specific measures it plans to take to meet that goal. For example, the Facebook Dating profile will be opt-in so no one is on the platform that doesn’t want to be. Additionally, other than your first name and age, you can choose what to share of your profile.
To protect the privacy of those using the platform, you will not be matched your Facebook friends (other than mutual Secret Crushes) and you will choose if you are matched with your friend’s friends. Those communities will only know you’re on the app if you tell them. Finally, all data used from Facebook or the matches made through Facebook Dating will not be used outside the app.
Only time will tell how Facebook Dating does in the dating app scene in the US. Given that it can be tied to Facebook and Instagram, it could prove unique among other dating services.