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OkCupid Introduces Feature in Support of Abortion Rights

  • September 20, 2021

OkCupid’s abortion-rights badge was developed after the Supreme Court decided in early September not to block the Texas law that bans most abortions after six weeks and allows citizens to sue anyone who helps a patient receive an abortion. Signaling support of abortion rights was already gaining purchase with OkCupid users: Between September 2020 and September 2021, the number of users in the United States who wrote “pro-choice” in their bios increased by about 18 percent, the company said.

Sarah Lynn Robinson, 30, a dating coach, was one of those users. After Senate Bill 8 became law, she added a line to her OkCupid bio: “pro-woman, pro-choice, those in disagreement can see themselves out.”

“I’m friends with some people who are a little more conservative than I am, or religious and on the fence about abortion, and that’s all fine,” Ms. Robinson said by phone. “But I think your partner is the one person in your life who should uphold the same standards and morals. I would rather be single for the rest of my life than be with a guy who doesn’t support my right to bodily autonomy.”

More and more, dating apps like OkCupid are enabling users to incorporate their political views into their profiles. Bumble offers a filter that sorts people based on their politics, such as whether they consider themselves conservative or liberal. In a survey, the company found that politics is in the top 10 out of 50 factors that women consider in a potential match.

Before such features arrived, people on the apps were already creating their own slogans and visual shorthand to express their political beliefs. The red-rose emoji, for instance, could be used to indicate one’s affiliation with the Democratic Socialists of America, while a red hat in a profile photo might signal one’s support of former president Donald Trump.

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