turned-on light fixture
turned-on light fixture

you know how it's hard to meet queer people?

How Queer Speed Date works

Once you've found your nearest Queer Speed Date event, you've got 3 things you have to do:

  1. Fill out the first form to check-in! - You can do so before the event online, or you can get the link while you are waiting for the event to start.

  2. Participate in the event! - If you don't socialize at least a little bit, you won't be able to really connect with others. You can do it!

  3. Fill out the match form! - This is where you choose whether you want to be friends, romantic, etc. with other attendees of the event. There will be a collage of pictures and names in case you forget who is who.

From there, we will send out matches within the next few days (sometimes longer, make sure to follow @speedyqueers on instagram for any delay updates), and you can keep talking to the queer people you matched with!

we're working towards a different kind of social app, with different priorities.

what if it were easy?

we want to make it easy for everyone to build their communities

in the first year of queer speed date (12/21-11/22):

  • we ran 14 events with a total of 127 attendees

  • we sent out 168 friend matches and 16 matches of other kinds (romance, polyam, play partner, etc.)

the idea for this app came from the other side of those numbers:

  • most events had at least one person who didn't respond

  • multiple people filled out our match form without including their name or contact info

  • some people submitted the match form twice, often indicating different interests

  • one match was between someone who only provided a snapchat handle and someone who only provided a yahoo email address

many dating apps are predatory

in the early days of online dating, there were a lot of free options, and for the most part, sites and early apps only knew what you entered yourself.

now, almost every app has a paid version. they're exploiting the fact that (generally) the more we pay for something, the more we believe it must be worth what we pay. (even though whether they're worth it is very much up for debate.)

dating apps can also get a disturbing amount of data from their users, and generally, you have no control with what they do with it.

queer people are more likely to use dating apps. it's harder for us to find each other in the offline world.

queer people are also more likely to face financial hardship than their straight counterparts, and for trans people, dating apps can be a real minefield, if their profiles are even able to stay active.

let's be honest - we don't need it to be easier for people to make lists of us.

according to the pew research center, 55% of lgb adults in the u.s. are on the apps, but little more than a third of those people have ever been in a committed romantic relationship with someone they met on dating sites or apps.

we're giving up an awful lot for dating apps that don't really serve our purposes as much as their own profit motive. many queer friendships are born on dating apps! many queer relationships don't look like straight relationships, and not just because of the genders involved. it can be really hard to tell whether someone is flirting or being friendly. even in trans-friendly spaces, people get accused of "tricking" or "lying" to potential dates if they don't disclose things like a physical disability.

has this ever happened to you?

you match with someone on an app. you text for days or weeks on end. one of you gets brave enough to ask the other to meet and the other is brave enough to accept.

you proceed to have an awkward coffee date and regret having lost the person you were each creating in your head to fill out the words you typed to each other.

imagine a dating-style app where you only match with people you've met irl

so far, we've only used our matching system for speed dating, but the app we're envisioning could be used for any event where RSVPs or tickets are required anyway.

imagine a dating-style app where you can change your mind

let's say you met salem, our lovely former intern (pic above), at an event. you initially matched as friends, but you caught feelings and you aren't sure if ve feels the same way. you add romance to your salem interest list - if they also do so, you'll both get notified!

on the other hand, if you find you're not a good match after all, you can simply clear out your interest list and your conversation history clears.

imagine a dating-style app that doesn't want your data and values privacy

we don't want your location data. we don't want to rummage through your contacts. we don't want access to bluetooth. we want to know that you're over 18, but we don't want to get more specific than that. we don't even want your last name or a written bio. having encrypted messaging is a high priority for us.

we'll know what events you register for and whether the event host checked you in. we'll know who you match with and if anyone you flag as not wanting to see is going to an event you're interested in. that's pretty much it.

imagine a dating-style app that's motivated to build community, not profit

we don't believe that the way a dating app works should be based on investors who aren't using it. we want this app to work because it works for you.

we're looking at stewardship and worker-owned models, rather than trying to hop on the v.c. carousel.