Censorship of Tinder: What? When? Where?

Apps Mar 17, 2021

Tinder is an American online dating and geosocial networking app that lets its users swipe whether to like or dislike other users anonimously, based on their profile pictures, bios and shared interests. As soon as two users like each other, "matched", they can start messaging. Tinder operates on a freemium business model and has 30 billion matches to date, making the app the place to be to meet new people.

The app was developed by the studio Hatch Labs in 2012. It took time to get the app to become popular and, in January 2014, the number of swipes per day became about 450M, and the number of weekly users reached 15%.

Tinder was very popular among Olympic athletes and residents during the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi.

Already in 2015, they began a forced user base monetization, adding some restrictions and new paid features.

Since November 2016, Tinder has been generating an Elo rating. It is based on advanced algorithms, which give out matches among similar users.

Since the middle of 2016, the app has been taken first place for AppStore downloads in over 30 countries. In the USA, Tinder has been downloaded more than 40M times.

Since 2018, using the app requires a phone number for signing in, which made lots of users to stop using Tinder.


· Swipe is the central function of the app's design. Swiping right Tinder users "like" potential candidates and swiping left "dislike" and continue searching for their perfect matches.

· Messaging is the second popular feature after swipe. Once both users swipe right to each other profiles, they become a match and can text each other on the app.

· Instagram integration lets Tinder users access Instagram profiles of other users.

· Common Connections enables Tinder users to see if they have mutual Facebook contacts with their match, or if they have separate friends who are friends with each other.

· Tinder Gold is a premium subscription, introduced in 2017, lets Tinder users see they already liked them before swiping by themselves.

· Panic button is a feature that includes emergency help, picture, verification, and location tracking was introduced in the US in 2020.

Countries where it is blocked:

Although Tinder is used in almost 200 countries and is translated into 40 languages, in some countries, people are not allowed to use it or can jeopardize their privacy if using.

Pakistan has banned Tinder as it does not comply with the local laws. Governments explain that the application distributes "immoral content."

The Pakistani Telecommunications Authority stated that a warning was to the app's management was sent due to the negative consequences of continuously broadcasting immoral or obscene content.

Pakistan is believed to be using digital legislation to restrict free speech on the Internet. The country often blocks or removes news criticizing the government or the military.

Tinder can't be used in China as the registration process and logging in is possible only with a Facebook account, and it is restricted in China. That is why Tinder can't be accessed without a VPN.

There is a Chinese analog called TanTan, which is more popular among people.

Tinder is not censored in Russia, but it has become not private since 2019. Roskomnadzor, the Russian Federal Service for Supervision in the Sphere of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Communications, entered Tinder into the register of organizers of information dissemination in the Network.

In the list of the department, you can find it at the link tinder.com. Under Russian law, services on this list are required to collect, store, and provide the FSB and other authorized government agencies with data on their users' actions, including the content of their correspondence.