Twitter suspends Grindr from its advertising network for privacy reasons

Twitter suspended the Grindr gay dating application from its ad network on Wednesday, a day after a report accused Grindr, Tinder and OkCupid of poor quality deals with vendors and advertisers.

The applications have allegedly been sharing intimate personal information about their users with outside vendors, including sexual orientation, age and location, as well as, in the case of Grindr, HIV status and recreational drug use, according to the report. from Norwegian Consumer Council, a consumer protection agency.

The exchange of information does not violate the laws of the United States, but apparently would violate the recently instituted European privacy laws, according to Tuesday’s report entitled “Out of control.”

“These practices are out of control, plagued by privacy violations and violations of European law, and highly problematic from an ethical perspective,” the report reads.

Grindr criticized for forcing users to accept their privacy policy and the terms and conditions in full if they want to register. In addition, the privacy rules of the dating application are written in a vague way that “probably infringes the GDPR and makes it impossible for the user to know what they are giving their consent to,” the group said.

Tinder and OkCupid, both owned by Match Group, do not provide in-app settings related to privacy or advertising, according to the report, and allow user data to be shared with “at least 45 dating-related businesses,” according to the report

A statement issued by Match Group said the company is “dedicated to the protection of user data and complies with all applicable laws in all markets.”

After publication of the report, a group of consumers and privacy groups in the USA. UU. They sent a letter to Congress, the Federal Trade Commission and state attorney generals in California, Texas and Oregon asking them to investigate the dating applications in the Google Play Store.

None of the recipients of the letter has responded yet, except for Twitter’s action against Grindr.

“We are currently investigating this problem to understand the sufficiency of Grindr’s consent mechanism,” a Twitter spokesman told The Post in a statement. “Meanwhile, we have disabled Grindr’s MoPub account,” Twitter said, referring to the name of its advertising network.

The spokesman did not explain why only Grindr was suspended and not Tinder or OkCupid, who are also members of the “real-time exchange of offers” on Twitter.

Burcu Kilic, director of digital rights for consumer advocacy organization Public Citizen, told The Post that Twitter should do more because the decision to ban Grindr seems easy given its ties to China.

“It’s a good start, but it’s not enough, it doesn’t address a broader systematic problem,” he said. “Grindr is a black sheep, it is owned by China.”


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