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We created our Tinder profiles to state the same information: first name, age, journalist, Eugene. Seeing as my friend Snow had been dating online for about three years, I wasn’t expecting to receive any responses equitable to hers in only two weeks — but I did.
We picked similar photos — selfies, a nicer headshot and pictures with our respective pets. We set our accounts to view men only, kept the generic 18-32 year-old age range the app gave us, set a 100-mile radius and right-swiped every person that came up. My coworker and I got a comparable amount of greetings, funny pickup lines and sexual requests, but the biggest standout was that the ones I received mentioned my race, while hers did not.
Unlike myself, she was using Tinder and Ok Cupid in an actually serious manner but, instead of love, she was finding a whole bunch of casual racism.“82 percent of non-black men on Ok Cupid show some bias against black women,” the study says.This data was specifically for heterosexual users, but OKCupid’s 2014 study also displayed data for users searching out same-sex relationships, and the data was similar for black women there.“On Ok Cupid, anyone can message you — you don’t have to match with them or anything — so I’ll just get random messages from random people and they’ll just be like, ‘my chocolate mami’ or something, or ‘I really like your skin tone, very unique and delicious,’” Snow says.Along with the fetishization, on the other end of the spectrum, Snow says she often gets outright ignored while online dating.