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Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Dating platforms are rolling out design features to mitigate the impact of offline prejudices migrating onto dating apps.

Why it matters: Though online dating can connect us to types of people we wouldn’t ordinarily meet, bias and discrimination among users can turn people away from dating altogether.

Details: Online dating often sheds light on how wider social biases are intertwined with our intimate lives.

Where it stands: Platforms are introducing new features and policies to address the problem of discrimination.

  • Grindr launched its “Kindr” campaign featuring new community guidelines, stricter enforcement of non-discrimination policies, and a video series that documents discrimination and stigma. But some users are skeptical.
  • In its #AllTypesAllSwipes update, Tinder provided more expansive and inclusive gender options.
  • OkCupid now allows users to share their preferred gender pronouns.
  • DaddyHunt teaches users about the stigma of HIV, and offers a “Live Stigma-Free” profile badge that shows a user is “open to dating someone of any [HIV] status.”

Between the lines: These changes make apps more accessible and inclusive without limiting people’s choices around love and sex.

The bottom line: In an era of entrenched social inequality and polarization, design changes could help to reduce bias, stigma and discrimination for the millions of people who rely on dating apps. Platforms cannot remain neutral — they should embrace this task and design to bring people together with dignity in pursuit of love.

Jevan Hutson researches technology policy and social computing. A law student at the University of Washington, he holds a master's in information science from Cornell and has worked at the ACLU, Nintendo and Boeing.

Go deeper: Read Hutson's paper on app design and bias and more research on social integration and online dating.

Go deeper

Tech scrambles to derail inauguration threats

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Tech companies are sharing more information with law enforcement in a frantic effort to prevent violence around the inauguration, after the government was caught flat-footed by the Capitol siege.

Between the lines: Tech knows it will be held accountable for any further violence that turns out to have been planned online if it doesn't act to stop it.

Dave Lawler, author of World
2 hours ago - World

Uganda's election: Museveni declared winner, Wine claims fraud

Wine rejected the official results of the election. Photo: Sumy Sadruni/AFP via Getty

Yoweri Museveni was declared the winner of a sixth presidential term on Saturday, with official results giving him 59% to 35% for Bobi Wine, the singer-turned-opposition leader.

Why it matters: This announcement was predictable, as the election was neither free nor fair and Museveni had no intention of surrendering power after 35 years. But Wine — who posed a strong challenged to Museveni, particularly in urban areas, and was beaten and arrested during the campaign — has said he will present evidence of fraud. The big question is whether he will mobilize mass resistance in the streets.

Off the Rails

Episode 1: A premeditated lie lit the fire

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. Axios takes you inside the collapse of a president with a special series.

Episode 1: Trump’s refusal to believe the election results was premeditated. He had heard about the “red mirage” — the likelihood that early vote counts would tip more Republican than the final tallies — and he decided to exploit it.

"Jared, you call the Murdochs! Jason, you call Sammon and Hemmer!”