The spread of the novel coronavirus has reportedly made the online dating scene stagnant as people social distance themselves to avoid contracting the disease. The dating apps have suffered a setback as most of the potential date site options like pubs, bars, sporting events, concerts, and dine-in restaurants close down in an effort to contain the spread. Therefore, several dating app users have either delayed or cancelled in-person meetups due to health concerns, confirmed reports.
"We don't know who needs to hear this, but now is NOT the time to go out with your date to a bar," a leading match-maker OkCupid tweeted from their official Twitter handle. "FaceTime, Skype, call, text, call, message on our app, all very romantic right now," it further recommended. Matt Stoller, a US writer tweeted saying, "It's time to shut down Tinder and all online dating services. No more internet-enabled interactions among random people until the #coronavirus crisis has passed,” he added.
The popular dating app bumble published a blog post by epidemiologist Dr. Seema Yasmin urging those on the app to avoid shaking hands if users opt to meet in person and to avoid contact. “If you have symptoms of a cold or flu, stay at home and limit contact with others,” it said. “Since the new coronavirus can spread from people with even mild symptoms, it’s important to ask your date if they have any, offering them a rain check if they do. That might feel awkward, but it shouldn’t — it’s an important way to protect your health,” Bumble further suggested encouraging alternate options like video chat or voice call.
OkCupid, another dating app, says that 92 per cent of the users were still dating as usual amid the spread of coronavirus, as per the data it analyzed last week. Tinder, however, cancelled its Swipe Night due to concerns about its theme having to do with proximity. Another dating site, Coffee Meets Bagel (CMB), has started pitching ideas for remote interactions, such as an online video game.