Bumble isn’t budging on its bikini-photo ban.
The online dating platform, which launched in 2014, has confirmed that it will not be reconsidering its current rules against posting indoor swimsuit photos despite recent controversy surrounding a user wearing a bralette, a representative for Bumble tells Fox News.
Bumble initially instituted its policy prohibiting indoor bikini pics in 2016, along with restrictions on sharing shirtless mirror selfies, among other types of profile photos.
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Earlier this month, however, a Bumble user named Cali Rockowitz said she tried multiple times to upload a photo of herself in a bralette and sweatpants, only for Bumble to repeatedly remove the photo from her profile, Buzzfeed News reported. When Rockowitz contacted Bumble, the company’s Feedback Team responded by claiming that such clothing may appear “too much like underwear” when worn indoors, per a screenshot Rockowitz shared with Buzzfeed News.
Bumble makes the exact same point on its blog, writing, “…if you’re indoors, that’s a no-no, since it looks too much like underwear.” Outdoors, however, bathing suit photos are just fine by Bumble.
Bumble also bans any photo taken in underwear — indoors or outdoors — meaning that whether Rockowitz’s top counted as swimwear or not, it likely would still have been in violation of Bumble’s policy.
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Even still, Rockowitz argues that this wouldn’t explain why Bumble later removed a photo of her in a blazer — with a bra visible underneath — months after she uploaded it and only after she inquired about the other bralette photos.
Rockowitz told Buzzfeed News she felt she was being singled out by Bumble, adding that its justification for removing her initial photos was “asinine,” especially from a company whose stance is “to empower women.” (On Bumble, “women are required to make the first move, shifting old-fashioned power dynamics and encouraging equality from the start,” according to its website. In same-sex matches, either party can make the first move.)
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In a statement shared with Fox News, Bumble reiterated that its rules prohibit swimwear only in a “natural setting.”
“In 2016, we banned shirtless bathroom mirror selfies in response to feedback from our Bumble community — and after our research showed that profiles that included those kinds of photos were the most swiped left on,” Bumble wrote. “As part of that policy, our photo rules prohibit photos of people indoors wearing swimsuits or underwear. Swimsuit photos are acceptable if you’re outside by the pool or on the beach as you’re in a natural setting to be wearing a swimsuit.”
A representative for the platform added that there are no plans to review the policy in light of recent events.
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In addition to indoor bikini photos and shirtless mirror selfies, Bumble users are prohibited from using photos of children (unless accompanied by the user), as well as pornographic photos, nude photos, photos depicting drug use, photos of illegal behavior, or photos with guns, unless posted by military members or police officers in uniform.