A surprising number of men are using the gay dating and hookup app Grindr to find something other than sex.
While the app remains primarily used for locating a suitable partner for a hook-up, Grindr revealed approximately a quarter of users are online to network. A spokesperson for Grindr told
Business Insider the app is an effective tool for folks looking to connect with other gay men for personal and professional relationships.
“According to data from a survey of Grindr users, approximately 25 percent of our users say that one of their key activities on Grindr is to network,” a Grindr spokesperson told
Insider in an email. “We know people use our app to meet new people in their area and in new towns, and we also have plenty of anecdotal evidence of people making connections that lead to professional opportunities like jobs.”
Grindr CEO George Arison revealed to
The Wall Street Journal he had “hired or had a professional relationship with several people” he met on the app adding, “We encourage people to network on Grindr.”
Consultant and content creator Omaralexis Ochoa, 26, told
Insider that while “hookups and dates” are probably the first associations that come to mind with Grindr, he found it to be a great way to meet people and advance his career despite the stigma with the practice.
“I think it’s always been kind of a joke in the gay community about, quote-unquote, networking on Grindr,” Ochoa told
Ochoa spoke about that association and the opportunities to network available on Grindr in a
video posted to YouTube.
“I do think there are other more effective ways to leverage untraditional social media platforms like Grindr and Tinder to build a network and gain professional opportunities,” Ochoa says in the three-year-old
video. “So believe it or not can use Grindr to make friends. It’s actually how I’ve made most of my gay friends.”
Insider he is no longer on the app, but that it remains an effective way for gay men to connect for something other than sex.
“Grindr is one of the ways that I've made a lot of friends in LA,” he said. “I feel like a lot of gay men make friends through Grindr in that way and to some degree, ‘network’ with the app without really the intention of networking.”