Jan 23, 2020

Tinder to debut panic button for when users feel unsafe

Photo: Omar Marques/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Tinder will debut a feature later this month that will allow users to hit a panic button if they feel physically unsafe on a date gone wrong, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Why it matters: Critics have previously called out Tinder for not doing more to ensure the safety of users and filtering out possibly dangerous users, especially following reports of sexual assaults after connections made via the app.

The big picture: Tinder's parent company, Match Group, has invested in the app Noonlight, which tracks the location of users and alerts authorities when there are safety concerns.

  • "Tinder's move shows how some online platforms are investing more in the physical safety of users, while also highlighting the privacy trade-offs that often entails," the Journal writes.

How it works: Users will be able to put a badge on their profile that shows they use Noonlight's services. They will also be able to log information about their meet-ups ahead of time, such as when and where they take place.

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Massive demonstrations put police response to unrest in the spotlight

Washington State Police use tear gas to disperse a crowd in Seattle during a demonstration protesting the death of George Floyd. Photo: Jason Redmond/AFP via Getty Images

The response of some officers during demonstrations against police brutality in the U.S. has been criticized for being excessive by some officials and Black Lives Matter groups and leaders.

Why it matters: The situation is tense across the U.S., with reports of protesters looting and burning buildings. While some police have responded with restraint and by monitoring the protests, others have used batons, tear gas and other chemicals and devices to disperse protesters and, in some cases, journalists.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

U.S. cities crack down on protesters

The scene near the 5th police precinct during a demonstration calling for justice for George Floyd in Minneapolis on Saturday. Photo: Kerem Yucel/AFP via Getty Images

Major U.S. cities have implemented curfews and called on National Guard to mobilize as thousands of demonstrators gather across the nation to continue protesting the death of George Floyd.

The state of play: Hundreds have already been arrested as tensions continue to rise between protesters and local governments. Protesters are setting police cars on fire as freeways remain blocked and windows are shattered, per the Washington Post. Law enforcement officials are using tear gas and rubber bullets to try to disperse crowds and send protesters home.

Journalists get caught in the crosshairs as protests unfold

A man waves a Black Lives Matter flag atop the CNN logo during a protest in response to the police killing of George Floyd outside the CNN Center on May 29. Photo: Elijah Nouvelage / Getty Images

Dozens of journalists across the country tweeted videos Saturday night of themselves and their crews getting arrested, being shot at by police with rubber bullets, targeted with tear gas by authorities or assaulted by protestors.

Why it matters: The incidents show how easy it can be for the media to entangled in the stories they cover, especially during a time of civil unrest.