Bumble apologizes for controversial marketing campaign

The ads mocked women for choosing not to date, and created an internet backlash.

By Shelly BrisbinMay 16, 2024 11:21 am,

The Austin-based dating app Bumble apologized this week for an ad campaign that some believed mocked the choice not to date, or to remain celibate.

The campaign was part of an attempt by Bumble to grow its user base in the face of hard times for the entire app-based dating industry.

Tech expert Omar Gallaga says Bumble, which has focused on creating a welcoming environment for women, has come under criticism for the ad campaign, and changes in its messaging policies for members. 

Highlights from this segment:

– Bumble’s style, color scheme and a policy that only allowed women to make the first move on the site was intended to signal a safe, welcoming place for women daters. The company recently changed the messaging policy, allowing men to initiate communication.

– The controversial ad campaign encouraged women to date, rather than remaining celibate or “becoming a nun.” Backlash came from women, asexual people and others on the site and around the internet.

– Bumble apologized for the ad campaign, which had included billboards and internet ads.

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