Social Media

Bumble Wants To Verify Your Identity With A Selfie

It's part of an effort to cut down on fake dating profiles

Social Media
Sep 22, 2016 at 5:49 PM ET

So you’re talking to a guy on an online dating app, and he seems perfect. Almost too perfect, to the point that you wonder, “am I being catfished?” But how can you really know? Bumble—the app where women have to send the first message — wants you to be sure that no, you are not being catfished. To ensure this, it’s going to start verifying users by asking them to submit selfies.

It’s a move motivated by previous reports that Bumble was full of fake profiles, which the company was fully aware of. Talking to Select All, Bumble founder Whitney Wolfe says verification is intended to “encourage online accountability,” but its approach to verification is a bit, dare we say, unconventional. In order to get verified, Bumble will show you one of 100 different poses, like winking or throwing up a peace sign. You’ll then have to mimic that pose in your selfie, and submit it to Bumble for the okay. Bumble’s moderation team — a group of 4,000 people who work 24 hours a day — will review the pic to make sure that it matches up with the other pics on your profile and prove that it’s actually you and not some random who found your pictures through a Google search.

The verification selfie will never be posted to your profile. It stays between you and the person reviewing your photo, and once your pic passes muster, your profile will get a little badge that reflects your verified status. And if, for some sad reason, you’ve been using fake pics, Bumble will now hit you with a permanent ban (though they will give you a chance to fix your profile first).