Another uses emoticons to send the message: Story continues below advertisement The comments bubbled up recently from the harsh world of Grindr, a location-based app that lets gay men hook up through GPS pinpointing.
In an endless parade of shirtless beefcakes, many state racial biases as openly as other turnoffs, like flab. Explicit prejudice is not exclusive to Grindr — racial filtering is alive and well on mainstream dating and hookup websites, which give users the option of checking ethnic preferences alongside ideal body types and social habits like smoking and drinking.
As Canadian and American census numbers consistently show that interracial unions are on the rise, online dating is now the second most popular form of matchmaking, behind meeting through friends. Here, race remains murky territory. While most critics agree that the ethnicity checkbox is vastly preferable to specifying 'No Asians,' they disagree about whether the option is a step backward.
Is it any different than hunting through niche sites like Shaadi, an Indian matrimonial website, or JDate, an online matchmaking service for Jews? More crucially, can our sexual preferences be deemed racist, or is attraction a matter of personal taste? Do we need to "prefer" everybody? On generalist dating sites, users are discouraged from narrowing criteria, even though the option is built right into the services.
If you stick within one ethnicity, it does seem like you're potentially cutting yourself off from meeting someone who could be amazing," said Kim Hughes, a dating and relationships expert with Toronto-based Lavalife. The website lets people sort by ethnicity using an advanced search that also lets them parse body type "queen or king-sized" anyone?
Hughes's advice is to nail down the deal breakers — desire to have children, for example — and be open otherwise. They tend to concentrate on physical aspects whereas women are much more interested in lifestyle and background," said Justin Parfitt, chief executive of speed-dating company FastLife International.
That gender divide may help explain why most of FastLife's race-based events have flopped, including Caucasian speed dating: After organizing some interracial events, he was discomforted by client response, particularly when he learned that many men were categorically overlooking black women: It's really quite gut-wrenchingly sad, some of the feedback.
Parfitt has found, often aren't into first-generation Chinese "who may be too much like their parents or not progressive. Parfitt shies away from criticizing ethnic inclinations: It's a grey area. If someone has specified race but "is looking for a short-term or a sexual partner, then this could be a fetish. Fetishes tend to be fantasies," said Dr. He distinguishes this type of search from people in it for the long haul, looking for an ethnic type based on their "personal, positive experience.
Sahukhan suggested daters "ask themselves why they would prefer one race over the other. But if you categorically rule out an ethnic group, it is by definition racist. One may not be racist in other ways but when it comes to sexual preferences, the person is. And in my estimation, it is fine although self-limiting to be racist with regard to sexual preferences.