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Before members are allowed to interact with the Ok Cupid community, they have to agree not to send any harassing, unwanted, or sexually explicit messages.
This may sound like pure optics, but apparently it's working: "Since we launched the pledge, we've seen decreases in harassment, both from reports and our machine-learning technology that detects harassing language," says Melissa Hobley, the chief marketing officer of Ok Cupid.
I’ve always fantasised of there being a ‘weight’ preference because for me, it would cut out SO much browsing time, and would make it a lot easier for me to instantly view the men who preferred bigger women.
she's fresh out of a long-term relationship with someone she met on Tinder.
So I always thought that to cut down on the timewasting, ghosting and potential inappropriate messaging, it would be easier to connect with people on apps featuring specific themes or hobbies you have in common.
A lot of these sites feature the pornographic category term BBW (Big Beautiful Woman) in their title, instantly letting you know that you’re about to encounter a lot of overtly sexual content, or they feature the same stock image photo of a fat couple staring lovingly into each others’ eyes.
Fortunately, sites seem to be trying to combat this problem.
"There's a very limited representation of bodies when it comes to media in general, especially when it comes to women" she says.
"We found that not only did users spend more time evaluating each profile, but that [users] were nice and gave people more of a shot when shown the monochrome profiles." Davis didn't provide information on how many profiles were tested or why black-and-white photos, specifically, led to greater engagement, but she says the research showed that interaction with profiles went up "across the board, regardless of the profile user's hair color, skin tone, body shape, etc." But it's hard to tell at this point how effective these measures really are across the board.
These changes point to an understanding on the part of app developers about how harassment affects some of its users, particularly those who are plus-size.
Of course, these ideas play out in the workplace, on school campuses, and, in some cases, even in the medical industry.
So it's not hard to imagine why plus-sized women are often ignored, ridiculed, and/or fetishized on dating apps.
On an everyday basis, we are routinely dehumanised to the point of humiliation, and because we are not treated with the same level of basic human decency, love and respect as everyone else, we are automatically reduced to our body parts and are objectified as such.