A startup dating app has created a petition against Facebook to stop it blocking sex-positive services from advertising on the platform.
#open was launched last year and lets users search for polyamorous and open relationships. It also has 23 sexual orientations and 24 gender identities to choose from.
However, the developers have struggled to grow the community and they believe Facebook continuously rejecting their sponsored posts is largely to blame. Following another setback in October, #open’s Director of Operations Maile Manliguis reached out to the Facebook Ads Team for an explanation.
She was told: “Ads may not promote dating sites that have a sexual emphasis, such as sites with ‘couple’ or ‘group’ options. Promotion of casual dating, hook-ups, affairs and ‘mail-order brides’ are also prohibited.”
The petition was set up on Change.org and is looking for 1,000 signatures. At the time if writing it has been signed 938 times.
Co-founder Amanda Wilson created the app because she was catfished, mistreated and degraded by men on mainstream dating platforms for her sex-positive attitude.
On the description for the petition she wrote: “We built an app that supports the kinds of relationships people are actually looking for.
“Unfortunately, that’s dirty and shameful to every platform we might use to get the word out: If you want to advertise you can’t be sex-positive—it’s better if you remove words like “sex” and “kink” from your vocabulary, really.
“Carefully avoid any hint that adults might use your app to find consenting partners to have casual sex with. Don’t let slip they could use your app to openly engage in consensual non-monogamy—that’ll get you blacklisted entirely.”
Writing for The Next Web, Tristan Greene speculated that Facebook might be deliberately blocking promotions for any platform that would be competing with its own dating service.
Facebook Dating was due to be released in Europe on 13th February but the launch was delayed due to GDPR concerns.
Read more here.