If you are a plus size or fat person, you know how difficult it is to date. Tinder is notorious for its users fat shaming , and this video shows how people react to their real-life dates being bigger than what they expected. It was that video that inspired WooPlus , an app exclusively for the plus size dating community. There are several websites dedicated to plus size or fat dating, but most cater to feederism and especially the fetishization of fat people. However, this app is different. Some hater body-shamed an unsuspecting woman on the London Tube As a plus size person, the only issue I've had with dating is falling for the absolute wrong people, but that's an entirely different post and possible therapy session.
However, I was told by society that I would never find love because of my size and that I was not deserving of love because of my body, a concept that many fat or plus size people are familiar with. I downloaded the app and gave it a try. I started off with a very closed mind; I expected this to be yet another fat fetish dating site.
However, I was pleasantly surprised. Cofounder Michelle Li says it's no mistake the model is similar to Tinder. First, you can only like a few people a day, unless you invite friends to join the app, an obvious attempt at getting more users. WooPlus Second, if you don't interact with the user within 48 hours of you both mutually liking each other, the "like" disappears and you lose your opportunity to talk to them, a feature that prevents endless "likes" with no contact.
This is a great idea, because it's easy for us to "like" people, but starting a conversation, now that's scary. WooPlus The above features are strategic ploys to get more users interacting with the app on a more consistent basis.
The company tells Mashable there are over 25, users with 2, new signups every day. Sixty-one percent of users are male, 39 percent are women, and while the app is targeted toward women, Li points to this as proof that there are men who like "all different body types. Tinder reported 50 million users with 12 million users joining every day as of , and OkCupid reported having 12 million users in Perhaps because WooPlus's user base is comparatively small, there aren't enough people to make it awful — yet.
Rather than a "fetish fest," I found people were genuinely looking for relationships, people to just chat with, friendships or hookups — so pretty much the norm for dating apps. The photo stream section allows for a familiar social media interaction with its users, almost like an Instagram feed, where people can post pictures of themselves and chat with other users from all over the world.
While people can post back and forth publicly on the photos, unless you pay real money to send the user a "gift" cartoon flowers or chocolates , you cannot privately message them. This has led to a lot of people posting their kik — we can't escape it, folks.
Women get the usual range of comments: WooPlus But the interactions I saw were mostly positive. My favorite part of this app is how, for the most part, people were genuinely being nice. There will always be the inappropriate or lewd comment, but mostly I saw a lot of people being kind, especially women being kind to other women, which I'm all about: WooPlus I posted a photo of myself and said I was looking for people's opinions on the app, and this user summed it up: WooPlus I swiped right to everyone just to see what kind of messages I got.
I didn't really respond to any, but for the most part it reminded me of the times I have used other dating apps in the past: Regardless of its community and user experience, such specialized apps raise an important question: What is the difference between "fetish" and "preference? They have filters that crawl for keywords or phrases that usually indicate someone there just for a fetish fling.
But, Li says, the best option is for users to report inappropriate behavior or fetishization: For instance, this person's profile uses terminology and size preference usually associated with fat fetishes: WooPlus No one is judging people with a fat preference; however, the point of this app is for people to find a relationship, not to be fetishized.
There are plenty other sites and apps for people who share the fetish. But like most humans, us fat people want people to love us for who we are, not for our bodies, or not just because of our bodies. My biggest complaint of the app is last names appear on profiles. This can lead to people finding you on other platforms, as a fellow journalist had described to me they were doing for their story on the app. And of course, I got this: It appears the developers are working hard to make sure its users are treated with fairness and respect.
The general community seems eager to find love in a safe space; therefore, I think this app is a wonderful idea and more should give it a chance.
I am so sick of fat people not thinking they can't or won't find love. You deserve love, I promise. WooPlus app The Good People genuinely looking for compatibility, no fat shaming, creators anti-fetishization and taking steps to prevent it The Bad Not many users, limits in numbers of likes The Bottom Line If you're a plus size individual and sick of the fat shaming and limitations from other dating apps, this is worth a try.