Grindr names new CEO

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Grindr names new CEO

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Gay dating app Grindr names new CEO ahead of its public listing

George Arison will take the reins in October, following years of controversy surrounding the popular app.

By Zachary Schermele

September 14, 2022

Grindr, the popular dating app used by millions of gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people, named a new CEO Tuesday who is scheduled to take the company public this fall with an ambitious $2.1 billion valuation.

The company’s board of directors tapped George Arison, the founder and former chief executive of Shift Technologies, a website for buying and selling used cars, as its new chief. Arison, who led a taxi-hailing app before starting his own company nearly a decade ago, has been on Grindr’s board of directors since May.

Arison will take over on Oct. 19 as Grindr prepares to go public by merging with a special purpose acquisition company. In a statement Tuesday, Arison called Grindr, which had roughly 11 million monthly active users around the world as of 2021, an “unbelievable business.”

“Their hard work and a laser focus on delivering great products to a starkly underserved market are inspiring, and deliver incredibly strong business results,” Arison said.

He will grab the wheel as the app reckons in the immediate term with its role in addressing the monkeypox outbreak, which have been shown to spread primarily through sex and among men who have sex with men.

He also takes the reins following years of controversy that have at times complicated the identity and mission of the app, which fundamentally changed gay culture after it launched in 2009. In recent years, Grindr has faced accusations that it negatively affects the mental health of its users, poses an exploitation risk to minors and fuels “sexual racism.” The company told NPR in 2021 it takes seriously its responsibilities to prevent misuse and identify misconduct.

In 2018, it was uncovered by BuzzFeed News that the company had been sharing its users’ HIV statuses and location data with two outside vendors. The same night the BuzzFeed report broke, the company said it would put a stop to the practice. Later that year, internal strife at the company reached a fever pitch when the app’s then-president, Scott Chen (who left the company for Meta in 2020) made comments that appeared to suggest he believed marriage should only be between a man and a woman.

Leaders at Grindr have tried to move past those controversies with a number of initiatives, including Kindr, an effort it started in 2018 to combat racism on the app by updating its community guidelines.

“Everyone is entitled to their opinion. Their type. Their tastes. But nobody is entitled to tear someone else down because of their race, size, gender, HIV status, age, or — quite simply — being who they are,” the Kindr page on the Grindr website says.

Following concerns about exploitation, the app “refreshed” its Help Center, community guidelines and its safety tips, among other measures. It also partnered with another company to integrate machine-learning algorithms to prevent the transmission of exploitation and abuse materials.

In 2016, Grindr was acquired by the Chinese company Beijing Kunlun Tech for $93 million. The company reportedly had plans to take Grindr public, but it ultimately divested its shares for $620 million after the U.S. raised concerns about China potentially using the information on the app to blackmail Americans.

The current deal to take Grindr public, which is set to take place later this year, was made public in May.

In addition to announcing a new CEO, Grindr on Tuesday also announced it would be bringing on a new chief financial officer, Vanna Krantz. Krantz, currently the CFO of the financial tech company Passport Inc., will start her new role on Sept. 26.

Grindr’s outgoing CEO and CFO, Jeff C. Bonforte and Gary C. Hsueh, will move into advisory roles.

https://www.nbcnews.com/nbc-out/out-new ... -rcna47562

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Re: Grindr names new CEO

Post by Jun »

Grindr is the dominant app where I live in the UK.

Grindr users outnumber Hornet users about 100 to 1 near me. I counted.
Well, to be strictly true, we can see 99 profiles for free on Grindr. The 99 profiles took me up to a 12 km radius and Hornet had just one other user in that radius. I set the age filter to the same value on both apps.

There is a Grindr "user's voice web page. https://grindr.uservoice.com/forums/912 ... ilters/top

Top of the list of user complaints is the spam, with over 3 times as many votes as for anything else. Yet they didn't fix it.
I e-mailed a couple of Grindr directors and they were full of excuses about how difficult it is.
As I see it, every other social media and communication site I use more or less has the problem solved. Including this one.

Grinder have got a little better. Now when I get spam and go to block the sender, his profile is already deleted. If Grindr could find a way to delete all the messages the spammer sent at the same time as they block him, the problem would be mostly solved.
Maybe the new CEO will listen to the customers.

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