It's no secret that Grindr can be a very difficult place for people of color. And Grindr presents several challenges for different groups of people. Now, two men have decided to speak about the specific problems that Asians face on the dating app.
Toronto YouTube user Collin Factor brought on his friend Marvin to discuss what it's like to be gay and Asian on Grindr. Marvin said that he downloaded Grindr after coming out in 2014 and, as his friends predicted, it was not the most welcoming environment.
"I felt really insecure," he said. "And I was like, 'Wow, this is what being gay and Asian is like.' Where do I fit in?"
He added that, when it came to dating his first boyfriend, who was white, he always questioned, "Does he like me because I'm Asian or does he like me because I'm me?"
"I think it's a problem when people blatantly show it on their profile like, 'No fats, no femmes, no Asians,'" Marvin continued. "No fats, no femmes, no Asians" is a common saying on gay dating apps and it means just what it sounds like — the user is not interested in talking to people of size, feminine-presenting men or Asian men.
"What is the issue if like, an Asian guy messages you on Grindr?" Collin asked. "It's like, are you immediately going to be like, 'Oh no, you're Asian, I'm not going to like you'? That's like, kind of like, so strange to me."
The duo address that Grindr is an app for finding sexual partners and there should be some understanding that people can have sexual preferences. But, there's also a way to go about it. "I think it's important to meet someone's needs," Marvin says. "I think it becomes a problem when it's like blatant, like when they put it out there that you don't wanna talk to Asians."
Marvin continues, "The whole thing about 'no Asians' is because of the idea that 'Oh, you're Asian, you must be femme, you must have a small dick.'"
Asian men in general face a host of stereotypes about their masculinity: that they're not athletic, they're not desirable and they can't be as successful as white men. But on apps like Grindr, that prejudice can be even more intense — and it can be right in your pocket. Whether you're a person of color, a transgender man or some other person that's not what's deemed societally perfect, it can be a jungle out there.
Watch the full video below.