Match, which owns Tinder, Hinge, Plenty of Fish and other dating apps, says it will withdraw from Russian market altogether by 30 June.
The company that owns some of the world’s most popular dating apps, including Tinder, has announced it will pull out of Russia entirely this summer in an effort to uphold its stated commitment to respecting human rights.
Match, which also operates Hinge, OKCupid, PlentyOfFish and various other dating platforms, gave a hard date for its pullout in an annual impact report released on Monday.
“We are committed to protecting human rights,” reads a short paragraph within the section on “Cultivating a culture of integrity and reliability”.
“Our brands are taking steps to restrict access to their services in Russia and will complete their withdrawal from the Russian market by June 30, 2023.”
The move comes more than a year after Russia invaded Ukraine in a campaign that has seen the Russian military accused of widespread human rights abuses, including the targeting and torture of civilians.
Apps resist Russian demands to make user data available to government
Match has previously come under pressure to store user Russian users’ data and messages in Russia in compliance with intelligence service requirements, raising concerns that LGBTQ users in particular could see their data shared with a notoriously hostile government.
Like several other western social media giants, the company has refused. Last summer, it was fined 2 million roubles (€22,868) by a Moscow district court in a case brought against several platforms including WhatsApp, Snapchat, Spotify and Hotels.com.
However, Match apps are also available for download in other countries with poor human rights records, among them Belarus, an authoritarian state and notorious rights violator which has offered a degree of military assistance in the invasion of Ukraine.
Match’s withdrawal from Russia has been relatively slow compared to some other players in the online dating marketplace. Bumble Inc., which owns both Bumble and Badoo, announced it was blocking app downloads in both Russia and Belarus in March 2022.
Match has been contacted for comment.