Facebook Dating Has Arrived in the United States – Facebook has long been the go-to place for everything from college students to divorced women looking for love. Users in the United States can now use Facebook as a dating app, complete with advanced profiles, a matchmaking algorithm, and other features. Users ages 18 and up can use a suite of features designed to help them find a meaningful relationship on Facebook Dating, which started rolling out in other countries last year and is now available in the United States. Many of them would be familiar to anyone who has used other dating apps, but a few of them take advantage of Facebook’s most valuable asset: its vast database of information on you and your friends.
Facebook Dating is integrated into the current Facebook app, but it requires a separate profile to use. Your name and age are the only pieces of details that are carried over. Based on your position, indicated interests, and other variables, the service will provide you with potential matches. You may also opt to be matched with people who attend similar Facebook events or belong to similar Facebook groups. It won’t show you your current Facebook friends because that feature is disabled by default. Facebook Dating Has Arrived in the United States
Facebook is also using the US launch of Dating to introduce a number of new privacy and security features to the app. And, of course, there’s the Instagram integration. This isn’t shocking given the company’s efforts to put its networks closer together in different ways during the year.
“People are pressured to make a decision based on this one profile that never changes and is incredibly curated” on most dating apps, according to Charmaine Hung, a Facebook Dating product manager. The social media platform aspires to have a more diverse and genuine experience. Users will be able to show their permanent Instagram posts in their Dating profiles starting today. Facebook says you’ll be able to post Instagram or Facebook Stories by the end of the year. They won’t be Dating-specific Stories, but rather the same ones you’ve already shared with your friends or followers, and they’ll be deleted in 24 hours. Tinder revealed in April that it will begin incorporating Snapchat Stories, so the social network isn’t the first to think about it.
Instagram will also be integrated into Facebook’s current Secret Crush feature, which allows users to choose up to nine Facebook friends with whom they want to share an interest—as long as the other person suggests they have a crush on them. Your Instagram fans may now also be Secret Crushes—sorry, no celebrities or influencers unless they follow you! You’ll get a notification if someone adds you to their Secret Crush list. If you choose the same person for your list, Facebook will pair you up and reveal your identities. Nothing occurs if the emotions are one-sided.
Unique Safety Features
Hinge and other dating apps have long advertised their ability to pair you with friends of friends—people with whom you already have social connections. You can also do the same with Facebook Dating: you can switch off matching with friends of friends in advance, which could be a useful feature for someone looking to date outside their network. The function could also be useful for LGTBQ+ people who aren’t out in their communities. Even if you want them to have access to your Facebook or Instagram accounts, you can block people from seeing your Facebook Dating profile. Facebook Dating Has Arrived in the United States
When you meet someone on Facebook Dating, it displays your matches (left) and also allows you to contact a friend about your place (right).
The most exciting new aspect of Facebook Dating is that it builds on a well-established safety practice for online dating. Many people, particularly women, tell a friend or family member where they’re going and when they plan to return before meeting anyone in person for the first time. People have been sharing their position more recently using apps like Apple’s Find My Friends. You’ll be able to open Messenger from Dating and tell a friend the name of the person you’re going on a date with, as well as the time and location where you expect to hang out. That person will receive a notification reminder and access to your live location fifteen minutes before your date. However, unlike Find My Friends, your location is only shared for an hour at a time, at least for the time being.
“We’re certainly experimenting with the timing,” Hung says. “We wanted to make sure that people didn’t share their live position for longer than they intended.”
The Basics of Facebook Dating
On mobile, Facebook Dating will be a tab inside Facebook’s main menu. Facebook will ask you to define your gender and the gender(s) of the people you’re interested in when you first create your profile. The choices are “cis woman,” “trans woman,” “cis male,” “trans man,” and “non-binary guy,” according to a Facebook preview. Potential matches will not be informed of your gender identity. You have the option of expressing interest in “all,” “women,” “men,” “trans women,” or “trans men.” You may also enter information such as your height, religion, job title, place of employment, school attended, and whether or not you have children. Facebook Dating Has Arrived in the United States
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You can add up to nine pictures to your profile and answer ice-breaker questions from Facebook, such as “What does the perfect day look like?” You can’t write your own right now. After you’ve completed your profile, Facebook claims it will begin matching you with possible dates based on “your likes, interests, and other Facebook activities.” This, according to the company, includes things like where you’re from, what Facebook groups you’re in, and where you claim to have gone to school. You will also only match with people who live within a 100-mile radius of you. You don’t have to share your location with Facebook all the time while you’re dating, but you do have to switch on location services so that Facebook can check you’re where you say you are—whether it’s only once, while you’re at home, or whether you change it if you transfer or fly. Facebook Dating Has Arrived in the United States
Facebook Dating displays matches one by one, but it lacks the well-known right-or-left swiping mechanism. Instead, similar to the dating app Hinge, you must like a person’s profile or answer directly to one of their questions, pictures, or Instagram posts to initiate a conversation. For example, you can send a message saying, “He’s cute!” by clicking on a picture of their dog. You tap “Not Interested” to reject anyone. You can also use the “Second Look” function to go over someone’s profile again.
Facebook Dating messages are sent to a different inbox and are only text-based. For security purposes, you cannot submit links, pictures, or payments. (For years, online romance scams have been an issue, including on Facebook.) Facebook Dating Has Arrived in the United States
Will Facebook Dating Find Love in the US?
Facebook is entering a competitive online dating market in the United States, but it does so with certain advantages. Many rivals use its API to control their own apps, so it’s already a unique player. The company claims it has no plans to restrict data access to apps like Bumble and Tinder, which rely on Facebook to provide information to users such as whether a match has mutual friends.
Facebook Dating also makes use of portions of the social network that Tinder doesn’t have access to. You can “unlock” any Facebook event or community you’ve been invited to and start matching with others who have also opted in to find future dates on the guest list or membership roll. Any event and community is fair game, including the concert you went to five years ago. That is something that no other dating service does. Facebook Dating Has Arrived in the United States
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Facebook Dating could be a huge win for the social media platform. It will provide Facebook with a wealth of new data on how people interact with one another, which could be beneficial to the company’s advertisement business in the future. However, for the time being, the company claims it has no plans to monetize Dating. There are no advertisements in the service, and advertisers are unable to target you using information obtained from it.
Dating can be useful in other ways even if it does not warn ads. The core Facebook app’s growth has slowed, and many people in their twenties claim they’ve recently deleted it. The group is already more likely to be single, and it’s possible that if Facebook offers an official dating service, they’ll be more likely to use it. This is particularly true now that Dating has merged with Instagram, a website that is already influential among younger generations. Checking out your new matches, honing your dating profile, and see if your crush likes you back are all potentially strong engagement boosters, regardless of your age. Facebook Dating Has Arrived in the United States
Facebook Dating is available in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Laos, Malaysia, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Singapore, Suriname, Thailand, Uruguay, and Vietnam, in addition to the United States. The service will not be available to Europeans until early 2020.
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