Online dating is
We have this really narrow definition about who is valuable, and that rarely includes women at all, let alone women of color and women who are plus."When plus-size women are represented, they're not the main characters.Instead they're the funny friend, or the helper, and they rarely find themselves in the center of romantic plot points.Dating apps don't exist in a vacuum — they're essentially just digital platforms where society's existing views on bodies play out.The major culprit here, according to Cristina Escobar, the Director of Communications at The Representation Project, is actually the media."These cultural ideas filter into our day-to-day interactions," Escobar says.Of course, these ideas play out in the workplace, on school campuses, and, in some cases, even in the medical industry."There's a very limited representation of bodies when it comes to media in general, especially when it comes to women" she says.
People are attracted to who they are attracted to, which leads back to representation, which turns this whole situation into the proverbial snake eating its own tail.
Their CEO, who started the app after suing Tinder over sexual harassment she experienced as a cofounder there, has always been an outspoken advocate against sexual harassment and abuse.
Tinder itself recently launched reactions in conjunction with updated messaging standards, reporting options, and new community guidelines.
So it's not hard to imagine why plus-sized women are often ignored, ridiculed, and/or fetishized on dating apps.
Fortunately, sites seem to be trying to combat this problem.
In fact, the plus-size dating app Woo Plus found that 71% of its 1,000 users reported having been fat-shamed on "regular" apps.