Tinder Social Feature is Outing Tinder Users in Your Circles

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Tinder is looking to be more social – or at least hook you up along with your group of friends to connect with other friend groups out in the real world. The problem? Tinder users are being opted in to this feature by default, so you don't have a choice. Which means Tinder Social automatically displays which of your Facebook friends are also using Tinder.

This can make for some awkward conversation, especially for those who would rather keep their dating practices private.

To make matters more uncomfortable, Tinder Social presents a list of your friends along with their dating app profiles so you can not only see they are using the app, but how they are presenting themselves on Tinder. (Sexy photos, anyone?)

And worse yet, some Tinder users think Tinder Social is a way to meet others for group sex (and considering the whole hook-up reputation, it’s not that far of a stretch).

The new feature is only in the testing stages in certain parts of Australia, so chances are you haven’t encountered the feature just yet. This will give Tinder some time to refine it. The company will need to make some changes to reassure people about their privacy on the app. Over the years, it has stressed to users that their social networks would not be compromised, and that anything they do on the app wouldn’t be seen on Facebook or in their other social networks.

While there’s currently a way to opt out of the friend-finding feature, Tinder users are automatically opted in, so you actively have to disengage. A good fix would be to make it an opt-in feature only, so Tinder doesn’t risk alienating users who didn’t realize their profiles were being put on display among their social media friends.

Finding circles of friends seems to be a new wave in the dating app space, and an untapped market for an already attentive dating app population. CEO of Bumble Whitney Wolfe announced the company would be unveiling a similar group friend-finding feature on their app, and Grouper, a dating app that’s been around for a few years, offers group dates for people who don’t want the pressure of one-on-one dating. There’s also MeetUp, a networking site that has been around for a while to help people find friends in their communities through activities and other interests.

Many other apps are jumping on this new friend-finding bandwagon, hoping to capitalize on the social networking market. We’ll see if Tinder or another app can get people excited about the friend-finding potential of apps.