Facebook yesterday (1 May) announced the launch of their dating service, Facebook Dating.
According to CNA, the feature is now active in 19 countries including Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Philippines, and Laos, and Thailand was the first Southeast Asian country to have the service available.
Charmaine Hung, Technical Programme Manager for Facebook Dating, said in a press release, “Currently, there are more than 200 million people who have listed themselves as single in their relationship status on Facebook.”
“Many of them already use Facebook to start meaningful relationships. We view this as an incredible opportunity to connect people should they choose to explore meaningful romantic relationships.”
She added that one-third of Singaporeans have dated online with 55% of Singaporeans knowing at least one couple who have met online.
Here’s how you can get started on Facebook Dating that you can access within the latest version of the Facebook app.
Head to your profile and click on the ‘cards’ icon at the top right corner of your screen where you’ll be directed to a ‘Discover People’ page.
Click on the ‘heart’ icon at the top right corner of the screen again, and you’ll be directed to Facebook Dating to set up your profile.
Perhaps as a way to cast your net further, you can also browse nearby events and groups that interest you and “unlock” the event.
Your profile will be shared with other people attending that same event and you will also be able to see who’s going and check out their profiles.
Dating chats are separate from Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp and it is text-only enabled as a “safety measure”, CNBC wrote.
There’s also the Secret Crush feature that lets you choose up to nine of your Facebook friends whom you have a ~crush~ on – more accurately, friends or friends of friends you would like to date.
“If your crush has opted into Facebook Dating, they will get a notification saying that someone has a crush on them. If your crush adds you to their Secret Crush list, it’s a match,” Hung explained.
Safety And Privacy
Facebook Dating seems to go against the ‘swiping’ movement popular dating app, Tinder, has created.
Users are required to look through potential dates’ profiles before tapping on “not interested”, Straits Times (ST) described – which could be a way to ensure users make more meaningful matches.
Suggested matches that are served to users are based on common interests, preferences, and their activities on Facebook.
The service is free and your privacy is within your control, especially when this service will connect you with people not in your social circle.
Your dating profile is separate but it will use the first name and age specified in your regular Facebook account, TODAY said.
Also, only your suggested matches and those to whom you are suggested to can see your dating profile – unless you opted-in, current Facebook friends and people you’ve blocked on Facebook will not be suggested to you.
Location services must be turned on at the point of sign-up to ensure a “safe experience” for users, so Facebook knows “[users] are where they say they are”.
But, fret not, users can disable location services after signing up for Facebook Dating and enable it again later if they wish to.
Only users who are 18 and above can sign up for Facebook Dating.
Users can only send a text message once to a match they’re interested in and the conversation can only continue if the other person replies.
The service also allows users to block and report any inappropriate users and offenders will be banned from Facebook Dating.
Users who don’t follow Facebook community’s standards will also not be allowed to sign up for a profile on Facebook Dating.
As with any other dating services, everyone should be careful about the information you put out there and be vigilant about the information you receive from others.
We also don’t know if Facebook Dating allows users with statuses like, ‘In a relationship’ or ‘Engaged’ to sign up for a profile.
Have you set up your Facebook Dating profile yet? Share with us your experience! If not, why?
Featured Image Credit: Facebook Singapore