Facebook takes dating app for a test run in Colombia

Donna Miller
September 21, 2018

By the way, Facebook Dating is not a standalone app (yet), and its functionality can only be accessed on mobile devices (for the time being) from the main app's so-called "hamburger" menu.

Dating is already active in Colombia where users aged 18 or more can sign up to create dating profiles for the online service.

That Facebook Dating feature that sounded like such a hard sell after the social networking giant's Cambridge Analytica data scandal is here at last.

To its credit, Facebook didn't just try to copy Tinder, like it repeatedly did with Snapchat, relying in no way on swipes for user interaction with the new feature.

Would you use Facebook's dating feature? Tap into a profile and you can see additional photos, and answers to OkCupid-style questions like "What does your flawless day look like?" No other private information should be included in your Dating Profile, but you know how these things go.

Facebook first announced its plan to dip into the dating pool in May. Meanwhile, you won't see users you've blocked as your Facebook friend. Namely that it's not meant for people seeking casual hookups, something Mark Zuckerberg stressed earlier this year when he first teased Facebook Dating onstage at F8.

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Throughout the product, there are subtle cues to reinforce this idea. Then, based on these answers and users' likes, hobbies, mutual friends, Facebook implements an algorithm that finds potential matches within a 100 kilometer radius. Speaking of matches, there are no "matches" in the way that there are on other dating apps. "Both depart from the swiping model popularised by Tinder in favour of asking users to answer question prompts and start conversations based on something in a person's profile", The Verge reported. Sharp notes that members of groups must opt in separately to ensure privacy.

You can send as many messages as you like each day, but you can only connect with 100 new people every 24 hours.

Messaging is also a tad less effortless than in other dating apps.

All messages will live in a separate inbox from Facebook Messenger, and thanks to security implementations it won't allow any links, photos, or payments to be sent via your dating profile.

The reason for this, like the rest of the service, ties back to Facebook's goal of fostering "meaningful relationships", says Sharp. Instead, you search for people through your shared connections.

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