Opinion: Grindr Can't Be Kindr

Last month, Grindr unveiled a new site (kindr.grindr.com) that shows the Grindr logo accompanied by the word “Kindr” and voice over from various interviews about sexual discrimination. Although the changes aren’t set to appear until September of 2018, no change can make Grindr kinder. Its racial discrimination doesn’t come from the app itself but rather the people using it and a simple app update cannot change that.

The Grindr app is simply an application that allows people to talk to others within their immediate location- anything past that is up to the user. Whether it be drugs, sex, or discrimination, the application is simply a means for the user to interact. It is clear that Grindr is an app that facilitates a toxicity within the gay community but it only enhances the toxicity that is already there.

The first problem with the Kindr campaign is that Grindr itself has not changed. Their advertisements across all platforms have perpetuated the Eurocentric standards of beauty and lean towards a gay, white, muscular man. Advertisements (such as those pictured in this article) show stereotypically “hot” white men in groups, already excluding any other race or body type. In an effort to add more voices to their campaign, Grindr has begun to reach out to its users about being interviewed in Los Angeles on their experiences with sexual discrimination. However, their ad to join the interviews had a photo of toned, tall, mostly white men. If they are open to changing the discrimination within the app, they must stop perpetuating the idea that those are what ideal gay men look like. When every ad for Grindr shows a singular body type or a majority of one race, it is perpetuating the idea that those are the most desired kind of people. Grindr’s marketing, advertisements, and pages for products like “Grindr Premium” thrive on the objectification of one kind of man.

The second problem with the Kindr campaign is that people cannot change with an app update. Whether the update bans discrimination in bios or gives users an equal platform, people’s preferences cannot change. Our inner homophobia is rooted deep and our “types” are a collection of our upbringings. Every ad for a commercial, every billboard for Calvin Klein briefs, every popular gay character on television has been a certain kind of body and we’ve engrained it into our heads. What will make Grindr kinder is self-reflection: thinking about what you like and why you like it. Until then, all an update will do is take up a little more space on your phone.

Report Explores The Use and Sales of Illegal Drugs on Grindr

NBC News has published a report linking Grindr to the sale of illegal drugs.

The world of PNP has nearly destroyed my life many times over. Knock on wood I survived, but the damage it caused is something I have to live with for the rest of my life.

To anyone with experiences like mine, this is story old news—but many may very likely find it eye-opening.

In the report, NBC speaks with drug dealers about their use of Grindr to move product, relying heavily on widely understood code.

Some lingo in case you’re not in the loop. PNP = “Party and Play,” a term used to describe wild sexual activities enhanced by hard drugs — notably methamphetamine, GHB, cocaine and ketamine. This is also referred to as “chemsex” by some.

I’m in recovery, and thusly I can’t use Grindr ever again in my life. The sale and use of drugs is all over the place on the app. Common Grindr lingo for drugs: “T” means “Tina” the street name for meth, “Party” and “ParTy” or any emojis that look like something you’d find at a party usually imply hard drugs, especially meth.

A diamond or crystal emoji = crystal meth. Cloud emoji = meth clouds. Stay away if you value your health in the slightest.

When you’re high on crystal meth and other drugs, you become sexually voracious and uninhibited. You also quickly lose everything that’s important in life. And a lot of guys who get tangled up in it die. 

To NBC News, this is all apparently quite riveting, explosive and new. To me, it’s old hat.

It’s easy to buy drugs on Grindr. I did it a lot, back in the day.

Also, earlier this year we found out Grindr has been selling our [very] personal information like HIV status and sexual preferences with outside companies. 

Addiction is hell. PNP has a cute enough sounding name--but make no mistake: it can be DEADLY. Meth is one of the most addictive substances on the planet, and you’re damn lucky if it doesn’t kill you. It’s perfectly reasonable to be frustrated with Grindr for their lack of commitment to cleaning up and monitoring the world’s most popular gay dating app.

For the report: NBC News

h/t: Pink News

A South Carolina Man Lied To Police About Being Raped By His Grindr Date

A Greenville, South Carolina man is now facing potentially five years in prison after he was caught lying to police about being raped.

A police report says that 37-year-old Joel Harris Peifer, of Rhett Street, met the authorities on the morning of July 16 at Greenville Memorial Hospital after an alleged sexual assault.

According to NBC affiliate WYFF, Peifer told the story that he met an 18-year-old on Grindr and had consensual sex with him. Then Peifer says he was drugged and raped while he was unconscious.

Taking this accusation seriously, the police asked if they could search Peifer’s apartment for additional evidence, but he told them no because he might have drugs or other illegal paraphernalia inside.

Then, police pulled up a picture of a teen and he claimed it was the one who raped him.

According to Greenville News, the arrest warrant then says that police determined that Peifer’s story was a lie after reading text messages between the two as well as other investigative measures.

Peifer was then arrested on Monday for giving a false report. False reports in South Carolina match the level of the crime originally lied about, so Peifer is facing a first-degree felony charge.

While he was released on bond on Tuesday, according to a spokesperson for the Greenville Police Department, he must return for his first court hearing later on.

If convicted, Joel Harris Peifer could face five years in prison and a fine of up to $1,000.

h/t: WYFF, Greenville News

"You Should Be Publicly Executed:" One HIV-Positive Man Shows The Horrors Of Hateful Grindr Comments

One man is showing the hate he receives regularly on Grindr for being HIV-positive.

Tom Hayes is the editor of the website Beyond Positive and often talks about the realities of living with HIV.

Hayes then went beyond the borders of his one website to address the topic. Hayes decided to share screenshots of abuse he receives on Grindr because of having HIV.

In the initial tweet that started the thread, Hayes wrote:

“One thing I hear again and again when talking to the media, or the negative general population, is that ‘HIV is sorted now isn’t it?’.”

“Medically? Treatments are simple, effective and stop onwards transmission.”

“Socially? HAH. NO. NOPE.”

From there, Hayes posted several screenshots of men saying things like, “You should be publicly executed,” and “Bet you wish you’d worn a rubber now slut.”

Take a look at some of the disgusting messages down below.

GayStarNews talked to Hayes about the tweets and living with HIV.

“Medically HIV is an incredible success story, it’s the fastest moving disease area in the world. We’ve gone from discovery of the virus to a single daily pill that stops you passing it on in just 30 years.”

“Sadly, society hasn’t moved at the same pace. People living with HIV still have to deal with stigma on a daily basis – be it from HIV negative peers, tattoo parlours or even the medical profession.”

“I wanted to share just a few of the messages I’ve received online to highlight the issue – and hopefully make people think twice before rejecting someone because of their HIV status.”

h/t: GayStarNews

Grindr Users Complain After New Audio Feature And The App Crashing

If you were on Grindr a few hours ago, you might have been able to witness the app crashing.

While many people are worried about the new audio feature, it seems that Grindr is just hoping to keep the app working.

Earlier this month, it was announced that Grindr would be implementing a new audio feature. In a statement concerning the new feature, Grindr said,

“The sound of someone’s voice says a lot about them. That’s why we added audio messages, an easy and authentic way to connect and express yourself.”

That said, many people were put off by the idea and saw it as another way gay men can discriminate against each other. Specifically, this opens up age-old arguments over masculinity in gay men.

News source Them also chimed in on the situation saying that this feature is, “yet another opportunity for gay men to be terrible to each other on dating apps.”

“Grindr, like many spaces created by and for cisgender gay men, is a social environment fraught with pressures to perform hyper-masculinity in order to be seen as more attractive. On an app where the phrase “no fems” is commonplace in profile bios, adding voice messages could just be another way to screen people who aren’t masc 4 masc or don’t conform to more masculine standards of desirability.”

It seems Grindr can't catch a break though as now the app isn't working at all. Earlier today (around about 10-12 hours ago) the app shut down and users couldn't log on. 

Of course, this led to some hilarious social media posts.

When I Moved to New York, I Asked Grindr for Advice

New York City can be stressful, so when I moved here one year ago, I decided to download a meditation app: Grindr.

Some may call Grindr a sex video game. The coins are blowjobs and instead of extra lives you get the gradual decay of your physical form until you’re rejected by the community you helped build.

But I call it a big old gay focus group!

So when I arrived in the Big Apple, I turned to localAdam’s apples for wisdom. Because what better support network is there than anonymous, thirsty strangers on the Internet?

Here’s the Grindr wisdom about the New York grind:

1. First things first, let’s establish our priorities. 2. And get the requisite T-Swift out of the way.

3. Now it’s time to walk the walk.


4. But realize that sometimes you might have to…

5. Speaking of transportation, when you have to take the subway, keep in mind the following.

6. Now, never forget the words of your middle school D.A.R.E. officer.

7. Or the sage wisdom of Suze Orman.

8. And by all means take in some culture while you’re here!

9. A few men had very particular sites they wanted me to take in.

10. One man had insightful thoughts on my project altogether.

11. Mike just has a vendetta against panhandlers.

12. A lot of men had advice that belongs on throw pillows or unfortunate bicep tattoos.

13. WYSIWYG needs to work on his confidence.

14. Luke straight up plagiarized The Secret.

15. BFG bought himself some time by asking a clarifying question

16. Two gents cautioned me on bitterness.

17. And another two resorted to straight up flattery, which you know I am not going to censor.

Overall, the New to New York Grindr Advice I got was as varied as the types of gay men in New York — sincere, sarcastic, practical, impractical, playful, intense, simple, profound, and of course: horny. I guess no matter our background, we move to this city with hopes and dreams and fears and neuroses, and its up to those who came before us to help initiate the new crop into the cult of New York.

So here’s to Year Two, where I hope I can give someone the advice 6’3” Eric gave me:

Zach Zimmerman is a comedian and writer in New York, who’s performed with The Second City and whose work has appeared in The Huffington Post Blog, Dose, and OMGFacts.

To catch his comedy shows, videos, or become his first stalker, follow @zzdoublezz on Instagram, Medium, and Gay Twitter.

Troye Sivan Opens Up About The Time He Realized He Was Gay

Gay Pop singer Troye Sivan is opening up about the time when he came to realize his sexuality.

In an interview with Attitude Magazine, Sivan shared that his sexual awakening was thanks to Zac Efron.

“I remember I cried when I realized that I thought Zac Efron was really hot, [when I was] aged 13 or something like that,” Sivan says. “I cried. And felt really sick… It wasn’t just: ‘This is a little crush on a boy or something like that: I’m not just interested in this boy–I think that’s he hot.’ And that was weird for me.”

The singer also talked about dating as a gay teenager.

"All my friends were hooking-up with random people at parties, and I just felt so left behind because I didn’t know gay people, I didn’t know where to meet gay people," Sivan says. "I didn’t really want to venture out by myself and so I just did stuff that a 17-year-old boy shouldn’t really have to do.”




A post shared by Jacob Bixenman (@jacobbix) on


Sivan went further to explain that he eventually figured out that he could fake his age on Grindr and meet guys through there.

“I managed to get a fake ID and then I got Grindr on my phone and started to try to meet people who were like me, but you sort of are forced a little bit into these hyper-sexualised environments, and even though that’s awesome when you’re 17… I didn’t know what else to do."

Perhaps, that’s around the time that he met the worst Grindr date of his life. Sivan shared in an earlier interview with PopCrush that he was hanging out with a guy he’d met on Gridnr when the guy suddenly pulled out his phone to look for someone else.

“It was a while ago, back in a time when it was a little bit less accepted and a little bit more scary,” Sivan told PopCrush. “I was like, ‘Okay. I think I'm just gonna go home.’”

Thankfully, all that’s behind him as Sivan’s found a wonderful boyfriend in model Jacob Bixenman.

“He’s got like a kind of energy about him, a magnetic sort of energy. I think people can’t help but love him. He’s just got one of those personalities that draws people in… It’s kind of like having your best friend around all the time, which is really nice.”

Congrats to the happy couple.

Stay Away From Jail Bait, Guys!

A 20-year-old man from Rochester, Minnesota is under arrest and facing charges for third-degree criminal sexual conduct, solicitation of a child through electronic communication, and possession of child pornography. Efram Ciavarelli responded to a 14-year-old on Grindr, but he told police that he thought he was over 16.

Grindr’s Terms and Conditions state that all app users must be 18 years of age, but in Minnesota the age of consent is 16.

According to KIMT3 News, Ciavarelli went to the home of the minor and engaged in sexual relations around 1:30 a.m. The encounter was interrupted by two juveniles who said they noticed an out of the ordinary vehicle in the minor’s driveway. They took a photo of his license plate and grabbed a knife before walking downstairs to find a Ciavarelli naked in the basement bedroom.

Ciavarelli exited the home, but was arrest shortly after near his home on the 1700 block of 41st Street North West.

A Hysterical Grindr 'Suggestion' is Making Its Way Through the Interwebs

Apps like Grindr and many others like it are known for its hilarity in terms of the responses many people get that range from funny to scary to really making us wonder if there are some crazy MF'ers out there, however this latest one that's making the rounds online is quite the giggle fest indeed.

Someone on the popular gay app was talking with another user about how they would "get down" in the bedroom, and it started out sounded somewhat romantic.

"Pick you up, place you against the wall, legs wrapped around me.  Kiss you deep, probing."

Then, it goes so out of left field by including a highly-discussed reference point from the past week or so.

"Then I'll enter you, and when I'm in to the hilt, I'll look you in the eyes and tell you that Shangela should have won."



CLEVER!  This of course refers to RuPaul's Drag Race star Shangela not winning All Stars 3 last week in favor of Trixie Mattel.  So if you can't win on the main stage, you can at least get some satisfaction out of "hypothetically" winning in the bedroom.  Halleloo indeed. 

Are Dating Apps Better Than Nightclubs?

Are Dating Apps Better Than Nightclubs?

Is Dating Digitally Easier?

#SINGLE. Alright, I’m constantly telling you how rough the dating scene is…at least in West Hollywood, California. Yes, we have a variety of men including plenty of Instagram models, retired twinks, and silver foxes to name a few. With bountiful men comes plenty of options. However, I consistently find myself coming up short. While online dating is not my preference, I’ve found many comparisons to how gay men interact in person and online. It makes me question: Is online dating easier than approaching someone at a bar?

Okay, let’s go through the cons of online dating: I’m well aware of the heinous acts which may occur. There’s a handful of people catfishing – or using a fake profile – to accumulate nude photographs and simply just cyber as they chat with someone under the guise of meeting. Online dating, depending on which website you are using, may essentially seem like a virtual bathhouse. To this day, rather than a hello or an emoji, I’ll receive a photograph of someone’s genitals and typically it’s not something I wish to see. But, alas, my curiosity still gets the best of me and I’m constantly checking my dating apps – and have yet found success. So yes, it’s obvious there are some seedy people on the internet, but those types are everywhere. At least you aren’t having to actively deal with them in person.

However, I can’t help but feel more people have confidence online than they do in their real lives. Prime examples are the Keyboard Warriors which overcome our social media on a daily basis. It’s easiest to live through an avatar than your actual being, for sure. Yet, if someone is actually true to their real life persona as they are to their online identity: Will online dating benefit them?

Chances are, if I’m out at a bar, I’m strictly out to enjoy a night with my friends and minimally socialize with anyone outside of our group or the bar staff. Paint me with the Millennial scarlet letter, but I tend to pregame and end up living my best life without worrying on making a lasting impression on other patrons. Hell, even if someone spots me in a retail store among errands; I’m not necessarily looking to be swooned: I’d rather get what I need and leave! I’m not really familiar with the days before dating websites and apps existed, so what am I to do? Go to the library or join a book club? That’s not in my cards.

Immediately when browsing on an app, you see someone’s photograph: Exactly as you’d seem them in real life – sans filter. On your dating profile, you’re able to give a biography of yourself and link to your various social media accounts. Which is something I don’t find available to a stranger upon seeing them in person. It’s a way to dive into who they truly may be: Their friends, hobbies, occupation, and even family. I can get a much better read on someone through the internet – at the very least what they wish to portray – than in person. To me, it’s literally the same type of first impression you can get nearly anywhere. With an option to meet in public rather than walking in anonymously, I believe online dating is – dare I say it – healthier. Which is a little scary if you consider human interaction is becoming so scarce. Although I don’t side with online dating: Why am I seeing the advantages to it?

Do you prefer to meet your new potential knights in shining armor in person or over the internet?

This post is the opinion of this contributing writer to Instinct Magazine. Opinion pieces do not always reflect the stance of the magazine or the other contributing writers.