Dating app Tinder on Tuesday announced a new update that will let its users from India select any gender that they identify with. The company said the new update has added 23 new genders to the list, which will “give users the ability to add information about their gender outside the binary”.
Until now, users in India were offered only two options: man or woman. “For users who identified as transgender, gender neutral or somewhere between or outside the gender binary, that limitation posed an obvious challenge,” the company said.
Over the past two years, Tinder has rolled out updates for diverse gender options in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Spain and Australia.
Tinder set up an advisory panel to guide the local development of the update and help make it more inclusive with indigenous gender identities and “to reflect cultural nuances of the community in India”. It comprised non-governmental organisation The Humsafar Trust and author Parmesh Shahani.
The Humsafar Trust Chairperson Ashok Row Kavi said the update is a “bold move” that celebrates the diversity and pluralism of India. “For numerous Indians who identify as trans and non-binary, this will be their chance to be their true selves online and in person,” Kavi said.
The move could help empower both government and private institutions to “widen the framework with which they approach gender”, said Shahani.