#Grindr

Grindr's Director Of Communications Quit Over President's "Holy Matrimony" Comment

Grindr just lost one of its upper staff because of its leader’s bad Facebook post.

Last week, Grindr was trending after its President and CTO Scott Chen posted to Facebook that he thinks “marriage is a holy matrimony between a man and a woman.”

Now in reaction to that, Grindr’s communications director Landon Rafe Zumwalt, who is openly gay, has quit his job.

Zumwalt released a statement this past Friday stating his opinion on the Scott Chen situation.

“As an out and proud gay man madly in love with a man I don’t deserve, I refused to compromise my own values or professional integrity to defend a statement that goes against everything I am and everything I believe,” Zumwalt wrote through medium.com. “While that resulted in my time at Grindr being cut short, I have absolutely no regrets. And neither should you.”

Zumwalt later wrote, “It has been a privilege to come to work every day to fight for our community. I am—and will continue to be—immensely proud of the work we were allowed to do during my time at Grindr.”

“I will never forget the heart-tugging messages, emails and more that we received from the queer community as a result of our Kindr initiative. Nor will I forget being a witness firsthand to the amazing activism work Grindr for Equality is doing globally or working alongside the award-winning reporting team at INTO.”

This controversy began when Scott Chen posted the following message on Facebook:

“There are people who believe that marriage is a holy matrimony between a man and a woman. I agree but that’s none of our business. There are also people who believe that the purpose of marriage is to create children that carry their DNA. That’s also none of our business. There are people that are simply different from you, who desperately want to get married. They have their own reasons.”

After the post spread across the internet through news headlines, and pushback from family/friends, Chen later clarified that he’s pro-gay marriage. He just thinks that everyone has the right to define marriage their own way without obstructing others or being obstructed, and Chen defines marriage based on his own relationship.

“The reason I said marriage is a holy matrimony between a man and a woman is based on my own personal experience. I am a straight man married to a woman I love and I have two beautiful daughters I love from the marriage. This is how I feel about my marriage. Different people have their different feelings about their marriages. You can’t deny my feelings about my marriage.”

“I am a huge advocate for LGBTQ+ rights since I was young. I support gay marriage and I am proud that I can work for Grindr.”

In addition, the story broke from Grindr owned news source INTO. Chen later messaged the article's author saying that he wishes the writer had asked for comment before misconstruing his stance on gay marriage.

Jack'd & Scruff Weigh In On Grindr/Marriage Equality Debacle

Last week, Instinct reported that Scott Chen, the CEO of gay dating app Grindr, sparked some controversy on the subject of marriage equality.

The blog INTO, which is owned by Grindr, wrote that Chen had shared an article on his Facebook regarding Cher Wang, the CEO of HTC, who apparently supported anti-LGBTQ organizations in the recent public referendum on same-sex marriage in Taiwan.

Responding to commenters on the post, Chen apparently wrote, in part, “There are people who believe that marriage is a holy matrimony between a man and a woman.”

Many folks took his comment that “marriage is a holy matrimony between a man and a woman” as being anti-marriage equality.

INTO updated its report when Chen later issued a statement saying, in part, “The words I chose related to marriage between a man and a woman were meant to express my personal feelings about my own marriage to my wife – not to suggest that I am opposed to marriage equality.”

He went on to say that he has long considered himself “an advocate for LGBTQ+ rights.”

“ I support gay marriage and I am proud that I can work for Grindr,” he added. “I apologize that my words did not clearly convey these feelings.”

Now, other gay dating app companies are chiming in on the subject.

CEO and co-founder of SCRUFF, Eric Silverberg, posted a video message expressing his concern that comments from the leaders of gay-centric businesses can have the power to set LGBTQ progress back in terms of equal rights and representation.

He began his message by stating up front that he is “unequivocally in favor of gay marriage.”

“When leaders in the gay community say these things, they disrespect the decades long work of marriage equality activists and give credibility to far-right politicians who are trying to roll back these rights.”

Silverberg also urged tech leaders to understand and further the moral agenda of the communities they serve.

“Let’s move our swipes and ‘likes’ to online communities led by people who stand behind their beliefs and actions, and who have a moral intuition that reflects our community,” he said in closing.

 

 

And dating app Jack’d posted a short video response via Instagram which shows Grindr’s recently announced ‘Kindr’ campaign, but it’s quickly overwhelmed by screen shots of the Chen/Grindr story.

It ends with the words “Love is Love.” Watch below.

 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

#loveislove

A post shared by Jack'd (@jackdapp) on

 

Grindr's President and CTO is Back Tracking On His Stance on Same-Sex Marriage

After just announcing that Taiwanese citizens overwhelmingly voted ‘no’ via a public referendum to amend the country’s Civil Code to allow same-sex marriage, president and former CTO of gay dating app Grindr Scott Chen posted an article on his Facebook page that sparked some controversy.

INTO reports that Chen shared an article about Cher Wang, CEO of HTC, who backed anti-LGBTQ+ groups influencing the referendum. Along with the article, Chen was very clear in stating:

There are people who believe that marriage is a holy matrimony between a man and a woman. I agree but that’s none of our business. There are also people who believe that the purpose of marriage is to create children that carry their DNA. That’s also none of our business. There are people that are simply different from you, who desperately want to get married. They have their own reasons.

INTO, which is owned by Grindr, also shared that Chen acknowledged that marriage is a “personal issue” and he would never purchase HTC products again or donate to Christian groups.

Chen responded in the comments section:

The reason I said marriage is a holy matrimony between a man and a woman is based on my own personal experience. I am a straight man married to a woman I love and I have two beautiful daughters I love from the marriage. This is how I feel about my marriage. Different people have their different feelings about their marriages. You can’t deny my feelings about my marriage.

I am a huge advocate for LGBTQ+ rights since I was young. I support gay marriage and I am proud that I can work for Grindr.

Chen has since deleted the post after it quickly picked up attention from followers. The Guardian reported that Chen’s post led to heated discussions with a relative.

Grindr was purchased by Kunlun Tech in January 2016 and Chen became CTO in 2017.

h/t: INTO, The Guardian

Pilot Uses Grindr To Flirt With Passenger In Flight!

Pilot Uses Grindr To Flirt With Passenger In Flight!


We May Need To Fly Delta Airlines More Often!

The friendly skies, eh? Many are anticipating their upcoming holiday travels. I am making my journey back to the Midwest and always have severe anxiety before stepping onto a plane. It’s the whole, unnatural feeling of it all, but some relaxation does come along. From my experience, the easiest way to get my mind off the fact that I’m traveling in a steel coffin through the air is some eye candy. I’ve had the pleasure of being served by some hot, flamboyant flight attendants and been seated next to some hunky, yet flatulent, passengers, but never have I ever had a super sexy Pilot! It turns out that I may just have to connect to the airplane’s WiFi in order to find one.


According to The New York Post, JP Thorn, a Delta Airlines passenger, claims his Pilot was using Grindr to hit on him- while in flight! Thorn, 27, (quite a cutie I might add), detailed his surprise to see the Grindr notification from a photo of a cockpit upon landing.

“The message read ‘I see you’re on my flight. Enjoy the ride to Chicago.’ My reaction was I knew I needed to get off this plane as fast as I can. I’ve had some weird experiences with proximity stuff on Grindr. He asked me about our flight, how it was on the way, and [the conversation] was really standard. I said there was no turbulence, then he made a joke about turbulence. I meet up with people all the time from Grindr. I think I totally would have met him for coffee.”


Thorn posted a screenshot of the Pilot’s introduction message to social media. Where, of course, it gained traction and came across my radar. Check out the tweet below:


 

 


Let’s hope this Pilot isn’t punished for Thorn’s lack of secrecy, but in all reality: Perhaps Pilots should not be worrying how to contact hot piece of ass on their plane until after they, you know, arrive safely to their destination? Personally speaking, I would’ve continued speaking with the Pilot in hopes of landing a buddy pass or something! Oh, the possibilities! But, in reality, we can all guess the Pilot was possibly trying to get his rocks off overnight before he took off to another destination.

Daryll Rowe, The Man Who Spread HIV To Grindr Users, Was Officially Sentenced

The man who purposefully spread HIV has officially been sentenced to jail for life.

27-year-old Daryll Rowe has become the first man in Scotland to be found guilty of intentionally spreading HIV after meeting men on the gay dating app Grindr, says Edinburgh News.

This past Wednesday, Rowe was given a life sentence with a minimum term of 12 years by the Birghton Crown Court.

At the sentencing, Judge Christine Henson QC said that Rowe’s crimes were a “determined hateful campaign of sly violence.”

“You are the first individual to be sentenced for Section 18 offences in the context of infecting others with HIV,” she continued.

 “With the full knowledge of the risk you posed to others and the legal implications of engaging in risky sexual practices, you embarked on a deliberate campaign to infect other men with the HIV virus.”

“Unfortunately for five of the men you met, your campaign was successful.”

She didn’t stop there though, as the judge added: “They describe living with a life sentence as a result of your cruel and senseless acts.”

“Many of those men were young men in their 20s at the time they had the misfortune to meet you.”

She then closed by saying to Rowe, “You will potentially remain a danger to others for the rest of your life.”

Former hairdresser Daryll Rowe first hit our radars in September of last year when he was identified in the middle of his court battle.

Rowe had been diagnosed with HIV in April of 2015 and then started to meet men on Grindr to have sex with them. With each encounter, he insisted on having unprotected sex while claiming that he was HIV negative. If any of the men refused, he tampered with condoms.

After many of these encounters, Rowe would send taunting text messages saying things like, “I have HIV. Lol. Whoops!”

Eventually, Rowe was caught for his ongoing crimes and was put on trial. It was then that Rowe was charged with five counts of causing grievous bodily harm with intent and five counts of attempting to cause harm.

During the trial process, Rowe shared the belief that he had already been cured of HIV by drinking his own urine and taking natural remedies like oregano and coconut.

During the court hearings, the jury also heard many testimonies from the victims who all expressed great remorse and regret after meeting Daryll Rowe.

One victim shared a testimony saying, “Darryl has destroyed my life. I would rather he had murdered me than left me to live my life like this.”

That said, it was imperative to the court that the stigma around HIV not be enflamed by this case. Felicity Gerry QC noted how the virus is no longer the great danger it was in the 80s and 90s.

“This is not a terminal illness. Those who live with HIV have good and high life expectancies," she said.

Again, Daryll Rowe is now off to prison to serve at least 12 years but most likely a life sentence.

h/t: The Scotsman/Edinburgh News

Teenager Meets Daddy In New Music Video "Afterglow"

The new music video from Christopher Sorensen, “Afterglow,” explores the dynamic between an 18-year-old teen and an older man who connect through a gay dating app.

The video, which features actors Daniel Bruington and Victor Leonard-Gutierrez, chronicles the first meeting of the pair at the older man’s home, complete with cocktails and a swim in his pool.

Things do go the way of romance and there are follow up encounters. 

But when one night goes late, there’s fireworks at home after what look like a missed curfew.

As his parents argue, the young man erupts in anger and goes looking for his older paramour, only to find a surprise.

Sorensen’s reps told Towleroad that the story line is “very personal to Christopher.”

“His goal is to create a safe space for young gay men to talk about any experience where they have felt taken advantage of,” the statement continued.

“Afterglow” is the first time Sorensen has included his own LGBT identity in his music. His 2015 music video, “Balloon,” addressed bullying.

Any readers have a similar experience with dating apps? Let us know in the comments.

Watch the video below. 

 

 

(h/t Towleroad)

Murder Suspect Claims There Were No Secrets in His Marriage

Earlier we wrote about the beginning stages of the court case of 37-year-old Mitesh Patel who was accused of killing his wife Jessica Patel. Mr. Patel was a prime suspect in the case and it was discovered that he had been cheating on his wife with various men using Grindr.

Now, the plot thickens as the trial unfurls with more details on the murder of Jessica Patel and the possible motives that Mitesh had to kill his wife.

Jessica was murdered by strangulation and suffocation with a plastic bag around her head. She was found bound by duct tape at the wrists and ankles. Mitesh called the police and said he was out and when he returned the home had been burglarized and she was dead. Authorities began to suspect Mitesh because he had scratches on his neck and then found the hard drive to their home security system buried in a suitcase. Not to mention, Mitesh had recently taken out a $2 million life insurance policy on his wife and also inquired about a will for he and his wife stating that the other would get everything should one of them die. Mitesh told police that the scratch was an injury he incurred at the gym, but his DNA was found under his wife’s fingernails.

One of the most horrific pieces of evidence is that Mitesh sent a text message to his wife asking her if he should order some pizza after the time she is assumed to have already been killed.

GazetteLive reports on the latest updates on the trial of this man who was leading a double life.

Several witnesses spoke on the trial that began presenting evidence on Thursday.

Jessica Patel’s uncle, Sharadkumar Patel shared that in 2012 Jessica mentioned to him that their marriage would not be going forward because they were having marital and intimacy issues. Mitesh would come home from work and go into another room to speak to another man, a doctor who lived in Australia.

The prosecution shared with jurors:

You will, however, hear that by the beginning of 2012, Mitesh Patel had met the man of his dreams.

The evidence shows that this relationship was not only passionate but that the two were in it with a view to spending the longest possible time together.

By February of that year, 2012, Mitesh Patel was to tell this man that he was the one for whom he had been waiting for nine years.

By the end of April just four months after they’d met, they were planning a life together in Australia.

It was also presented that from 2013-2018 Mitesh had searched the following phrases online:

  • “I need to kill my wife”
  • “insulin overdose”
  • “plot to kill my wife, why do I need co-conspirators”
  • “life after loss of spouse”,
  • “finding your way after losing a spouse”,
  • “coping with the death of your spouse”,
  • “The death of spouse, rebuilding your life after the first year”
  • “how do I arrange a funeral”
  • how much methadone will kill you

According to court reporting, Jessica had shared with her sister Divya that Mitesh had been violent toward her by putting his hands around her neck and sharing that he sometimes hurt her.

A pharmacy employee also shared that Patel would bring men into the pharmacy’s back door and lead him into the back to have sex. There is also footage of Mitesh kissing and cuddling with other men in the pharmacy. Men that his wife and the employee knew he was meeting on Grindr.

The Teesside Crown Court was presented with a series of text messages demonstrating the couple’s dealings with IVF. In a text message conversation on July 26, 2017 they discussed:

Mitesh Patel said:

Listen to me. If you still don’t want to do it, just say. We can stop, cancel and go our own ways. I’m being honest with you. I’ve done nothing wrong. I can’t carry on like this.

Jessica Patel:

Just think, you’re not being honest with me.

Mitesh:

Well that’s up to you. I’m not going through this every day. If we do the IVF I don’t want there to be any cracks in us. The way we behave with each other, that’ll affect our child.

Jessica:

Those texts and images tell me a different story to what you’re saying. I did say you’ll be forgiven. I want to be a mother and always have felt that since I got married. To have my own little family was my dream. I think it would be right to cancel for now.

Mitesh:

I think you’re mad. You can forgive me but I won’t forgive you for this.

Earlier in 2018 the couple vacationed in India where Mitesh Patel paid for a male prostitute. He also began looking for properties in Sydney while his wife continued IVF treatment.

The prosecution also presented several other pieces of evidence that Mitesh was engaging in sexual relations with other men in the home he shared with his wife. The prosecution said, however, that Mitesh asserts they had no secrets and does admit to meeting a ‘handful’ of men on Grindr.

The trial over the death of Jessica Patel continues, but this evidence is very clear.

h/t: GazetteLive

After Cheating on His Wife With Other Men on Grindr, Man is Prime Suspect in Her Murder

On May14th, 34-year-old Jessica Patel was found dead in her home of Middlesbrough, England. Her husband, 37-year-old Mitesh Patel is accused of her murder. Patel and his wife were pharmacists who ran a business together according to GazetteLive. Patel denies murdering his wife, but it is known that he had cheated on her numerous times with men who he had met on the gay hookup app Grindr.

In order to get a fair trial, High Court judge Mr. Justice James Goss QC was careful to inform potential jurors that anyone who was familiar with Grindr would not be allowed to serve as a juror.

He shared with jurors at the Teesside Crown Court:

It is agreed that during the course of the marriage, the defendant Mitesh Patel had been unfaithful to his wife, including having met men for sexual intercourse.

Some of them he met using a social networking site called Grindr.

In a moment the names of witnesses and others to whom reference may be made during the trial will be read out to you.

If you know any of them and believe that that knowledge of them is sufficient to compromise your objectivity as you consider the evidence, you should indicate that in a note that you write to me.

It is agreed between the prosecution and defence and approved by me that in order to seek to ensure your objectivity as potential jurors in this case, if you have frequented the Roman Road pharmacy in Linthorpe over the last seven years, or you have used the Grindr app at any time over the same period, that’s in the last seven years, you should be excused from sitting in this case.

If you entertain any doubt about any names you’ve heard, put that in a note as well.

There’s no rush. This is important. So think about it all.

The trial began on November 13th with a jury of six men and six women and two additional women as ‘surplus jurors’.

The trial will continue with opening arguments by Prosecutor Nicholas Campbell QC and is expected to go until December 7th. It is likely that Mitesh Patel will plead not guilty.

This story is developing as the trial continues.

h/t: GazetteLive

 

Sydney Police Looking For Man Whose Grindr Date Jumped Off His Balcony

Sydney police are investigating a situation in which a man fell off his balcony on Sunday and was impaled on a table leg.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, a 37-year-old man, whose identity is being withheld, was injured after falling off the balcony of his Brisbane street apartment around 4 p.m.

Police are now investigating the situation and are asking for the help of the general public. The authorities have also released footage of a man they believe had immediate contact with the victim.

According to the police, the two probably met through a dating app, most likely Grindr. The man in the video arrived empty-handed, was most likely there during the fall, and left with a bag in his possession.

"We're very, very clear [the other man] was in the apartment at the time of the fall," said Detective Superintendent Gavin Wood.

"The fall is horrendous. That's the best way to put it," he added. "This man's life has been significantly compromised. In terms of the enormity of it, I don't think you can get much worse.”

That said, the police say that they don’t believe the man in the video pushed the victim. Instead, they believe the injured man jumped of his own volition.

NSW Police say that they want to interview the man in the video as he may have crucial information about what went on inside the apartment.

Wood also added that people using dating apps should be especially cautious of who they interact with.

“Know who you are meeting, where you’re meeting them, what their intentions are and perhaps establish some safeguards beforehand such as providing close friends with those details," he said.

If anyone has any helpful information that can lead to the man in the video, call Crime Stoppers at 1800 333 000.

Former Rabbi Pleads Guilty To Sexting What He Thought Was 16-Year-Old Boy

A former Rabbi in Minnesota pleaded guilty last Friday to engaging in electronic communication describing sexual conduct with a child.

Aryeh Leiv Cohen thought he was exchanging messages with a 16-year-old boy on Grindr back in January, but in reality, he was chatting with an undercover cop.

According to court documents, the undercover agent told Cohen several times he wouldn't turn 16-years-old until August, to which Cohen responded, “It’s a little illegal…” but would then go on to describe the sex acts he was hoping to engage in.

On February 1, a meeting was setup between the former rabbi and the ’16-year-old’ at an apartment building in North St. Paul.

Upon his arrest, the 44-year-old reportedly told the police, “I sort of deserve it.”

He also allegedly told the officers that he didn’t “think much would happen” when he arrived at the apartment because the person he believed he was meeting was 'sexually inexperienced.'

The arrest was part of a sting operation aimed at combating the online solicitation of sex with minors. Several others were also arrested in conjunction with the undercover operation.

Cohen had been working as a rabbi and director of youth outreach for the Minneapolis Community Kollel, a Jewish learning center.

The center immediately issued a statement upon learning of his arrest that he’d been relieved of his duties.

Local ABC News affiliate KSTP reports that Cohen is scheduled to return to court for sentencing on January 16.

(h/t KSTP)

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