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Thursday, Oct 17, 2019

Love is Love: How Blued is making finding love online easier for same-sex couples

With dating apps aplenty, which one are you likely to use? Can you find love or a special someone through a dating app? We speak with Mr Yu Jun - Country Manager, Blued India who helps us answer some of these questions, especially how Blued is changing the dating game for same-sex couples.

sex-and-relationships Updated: Feb 20, 2019 13:01 IST
Saumya Sharma
Saumya Sharma
Hindustan Times, Delhi
How Blued is making finding love online easier for same-sex couples
How Blued is making finding love online easier for same-sex couples (Unsplash)
         

We have been conditioned to believe love is only heterosexual. This widespread albeit limited belief led many to remain closeted all their lives because they or their idea of love would never be accepted by anyone around them - at home, amidst friends, at work and in the society at large. With the decriminalisation of Section 377 in September 2018 in India, things have begun changing, and for good. Love is love, it really knows no age, language, class, creed and especially, sexual orientation.

Blued App, which helps same-sex couples find their significant others, comes with no location limitation and can help establish a conversation with anyone, anywhere on the planet. A user can verify their profiles and connect with a verified profile to continue conversations.

We spoke with Mr Yu Jun – Country Manager, Blued India and got some more insights on this dating app and what’s in it for same-sex couples in India.

1. How do you think Blued will change the game in the dating industry?

Blued is more than just an app, it’s a social network designed for the GBTQIA (Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Asexual) community and provide a safe and secure platform for them. There are a lot of dating applications and very few dating apps cater to the community. Blued provides a social platform for users, where our users can connect with each other beyond vanilla dating and matching and share their day to day life activities. We have developed exclusive features which help our users to create a strong connection within the community.

2. Please throw some light on the USP of Blued and how is it different from the other players in the Indian market like Tinder, OkCupid, Hinge and more recently, Bumble?

We provide a platform to our users not only to connect with fellow people from the community but create an audience for themselves and become a social celebrity which in turn can open the possibilities for earning streams for them. Our core features are Live Stream, Video Chat and Groups formed by our users. These features don’t have location limitations hence allow our users to connect easily.

The users can sign into Blued through their existing social media accounts. We encourage our users to self verify themselves by linking one of their social media accounts. It helps the community at large to report any user who doesn’t follow the company’s guidelines. The app allows users to sync their Instagram posts within Blued with 30 days previous photos/videos as well as new updates. These features are one of its kind which does not cater in other dating apps.

3. Will we see TVCs, print ads, radio spots of Blued coming up anytime soon? What are the measures being taken to spread the word about this app in a sensitive manner?

As section 377 got decriminalized last year in September, we have seen the society is taking a shift. This year we definitely want to create a change in the perception of the people when it comes to the LGBTQIA community of India, the step we want to take ahead needs to have a proper strategy and meaningful result. We are in the process of understanding the Indian market when it comes to the needs and feedback before we do any brand positioning via traditional marketing mediums.

4. Could you please explain the Dating Game feature on Blued?

We have recently launched #MyBluedMatch, a location-based, in-app activity for the users which is to promote same-sex love match. This activity was available until Valentine’s Day. The algorithm matches users with a preferred sexual style. The preferences, mentioned by users is then processed and matched with users on the lookout and matching them. Other dating apps do not cater to the LGBTQIA explicitly and do not share sexual preference of another person.

5. When a user signs in to Blued using their social profiles, does it necessarily show other users in their friend lists or matching interests?

A user can sign in or create their account in 2 ways – either connect with Facebook, Twitter or Google account or a user can also create a new Blued ID. While signing up with social features, we do not require the access of any such permissions like friend list, likes, interests or phone numbers etc to create a profile and never share any links or information on their social profiles on behalf of Blued. Once the user creates an account, the home page of the app shows an in-built feature of ‘New users’. Users if interested can follow the profile and can connect with the other person.

6. Is there a provision to ‘unmatch’ or exit the chat window to avoid any untoward advances in case either party is uncomfortable?

Yes, users’ safety and privacy is of prime importance to us and considering the same, we offer them an option to easily block or mute people who are abusive or irrelevant. In case any abuse or nudity happens, we also block such profiles and the same user cannot create another profile using his device.

7. What is the target group for Blued? Where does it stand in competition with other apps especially those promoting same-sex alliances?

Our app is the largest same-sex dating app globally and people above age groups 18+ are eligible to access our app. Our platform allows access of features with no limitations or paid subscriptions. It is designed to cater to the needs of GBTQIA community. The app gives them a broader approach to connect and find love and build strong relationships.

8. Is there a possibility of a chat room on Blued or a probability of one where people with the same interests can connect and take it to their private windows as per their choice or comfort?

Yes, we give our users complete privacy to chat, connect and find their interest. We offer a private chat window or video chat giving our users privacy. We have groups made by users and Blued admins. Anybody can join the group and later on can easily move to private conversations.

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First Published: Feb 19, 2019 14:53 IST

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