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Is this the lesbian dating app we’ve been waiting for?
Could Dattch become Tinder for the lesbian dating scene?
There’s Grindr for gay men. There’s Tinder for straights. There’s even Farmers Only, for bicurious Aleutian Islanders (JK, it’s for farmers). But to date, there hasn’t been a successful hookup app for lesbians—until now. (Maybe?)
Dattch (a combination of “date” and “catch” for the uninitiated) is a new free hookup app for the lesbian dating market. Created by Danish CEO Robyn Exton and launched in the United States at the Lesbians Who Tech summit, Dattch aspires to become the unicorn of dating apps: an online dating community designed for, and used exclusively by, same-sex-loving women.
Screengrabs via Dattch
Lesbian hookup apps are nothing new: There’s already Wing Ma’am, Qrushr Girls, and Brenda, which launched in 2012. Yet none of them have quite taken off in the same way that Grindr and Tinder have, in part because heterosexual men kept infiltrating the apps and soliciting women for threesomes.
Exton also says that part of the reason why lesbian dating apps haven’t seen much success is that lesbians simply don’t date the same way heterosexual or homosexual men do. “Straight products kind of mirror societal norms: Guys normally do the first move—whereas when you’re in a queer [women’s] space you don’t really have that kind of setup,” she told ReadWrite a few months ago. “You always have chasers and receivers, but they’re the same gender, so it’s kind of about making the whole system work better for that gender.”
To that end, Exton created Dattch, a community created exclusively for women, that Exton feels best reflects what women want from dating apps. Like Pinterest and Instagram, user profiles are largely image-based, which Exton feels is more representative of a user’s personality and interests than an intimidating, text-heavy, OKCupid-style bio. Like Tinder, Dattch also links to users’ Facebook profiles, essentially proving they are who they say they are and eliminating the chances of hetero men logging onto the app.
So far, Dattch is only available on iOS, but Exton and her team are looking to expand to Android (and an Australian version is also in the works). Surprisingly, they’re finding that the app is more popular in rural and small-town communities rather than in large, metropolitan areas, seemingly indicating that there’s high demand for lesbian mobile dating services in areas with small or even nonexistent gay communities. That bodes well for Dattch, not to mention other LGBTQI dating apps that will likely follow in its footsteps (though we humbly suggest that a name change might be in order, as “Dattch” sounds like a crude Scandinavian euphemism for ladyparts).
EJ Dickson is a writer and editor who primarily covers sex, dating, and relationships, with a special focus on the intersection of intimacy and technology. She served as the Daily Dot’s IRL editor from January 2014 to July 2015. Her work has since appeared in the New York Times, Rolling Stone, Mic, Bustle, Romper, and Men’s Health.