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Watch out, Tinder, Facebook is getting into online dating

Facebook wants to help people find love on its platform.At its annual developers conference, F8, on Tuesday, t...

Posted: May 2, 2018 12:15 PM
Updated: May 2, 2018 12:15 PM

Facebook wants to help people find love on its platform.

At its annual developers conference, F8, on Tuesday, the company announced a new dating feature.

Users can set up a dating profile with their first name, which the company said won't be visible to friends and will not appear in News Feeds. The feature is opt-in and users will not be matched with people they are already friends with, according to Facebook.

Before dating, the social networking behemoth has expanded into numerous other features pioneered by other tech companies, ranging from job postings to payments and online food delivery. Although Facebook has positioned these endeavors as just adding utility for users, they've been part of a broader effort to get people spending as much time as possible on Facebook. By providing a range of services in one place, the company becomes even more indispensable in people's lives.

And, of course, in doing so it also maintains its dominance over competitors, whether established or potential.

Before introducing dating, Facebook created Marketplace, where people can browse items for sale nearby, in a bid to compete with Craigslist and eBay. It allowed users to order takeout directly from fast-casual restaurants like Chipotle, Panera and Papa John's, much as companies like Seamless and GrubHub do. it allowed users to send money to friends on the platform, as the social payments company Venmo does.

Facebook-owned Instagram has taken on many of Snapchat's top features. Earlier this year, Facebook also stepped up its job postings features in an effort to take on LinkedIn.

Related: Bumble ad responds to Tinder suit: 'We swipe left on your scare tactics'

Investors in other online dating platforms appear spooked by Facebook's move into the space. Shares of Match Group -- the parent company of dating platforms like Tinder, Match.com and OKCupid -- plunged as much as 22% on Tuesday afternoon following the news. Shares of IAC/InterActiveCorp, the majority owner of Match, also fell 11%.

On Facebook's dating service, people will be able to browse events and groups related to their interests, such as upcoming concerts or groups for runners. If a user sees an event they'd like to attend, they will be able to "unlock" that event to interact with others attending it.

From there, their dating profile will be shared with other people going to the event who are also using the dating service. They will be able to browse through those users and start a conversation in a private messaging inbox that isn't connected to the Messenger or WhatsApp apps.

"I know a lot of you are going to have questions about this. We've designed this with privacy and safety in mind from the beginning," Zuckerberg said during a keynote speech.

Other details about the service are unclear. The dating feature is set to roll out later this year.

Beyond creating new competition for popular dating apps like Tinder, Hinge and Bumble, Facebook's move will pose a test for them because they have largely come to rely on asking their users to login with Facebook credentials. This grants the apps access to select Facebook data, which helps to speed up the process of creating dating profiles.

Related: Tinder to introduce feature for women to message first

The degree to which dating apps are reliant on Facebook access came into the spotlight just last month.

Shortly after Facebook announced stricter rules for its third-party developers, Tinder stopped working for some of its users who were temporarily unable use their Facebook credentials to log into their Tinder accounts. The issue was resolved but it was unclear exactly which Facebook updates caused the issues for Tinder.

And amid concerns about how Facebook is sharing user data, Bumble announced last month that iOS users no longer need to signup or login with Facebook. Instead, they can input a phone number to register and login.

A spokesperson for Bumble said the company was "thrilled" when it saw the Facebook news.

"Our executive team has already reached out to Facebook to explore ways to collaborate. Perhaps Bumble and Facebook can join forces to make the connecting space even more safe and empowering," the spokesperson said in a statement provided to CNNMoney.

Bumble and Match Group have been engaged in a very public legal battle in recent weeks.

The tone of the statements issued by Match Group and its majority owner were noticeably different from Bumble's.

"Come on in. The water's warm. Their product could be great for US/Russia relationships," read a statement from IAC CEO Joey Levin.

In a separate statement, Match Group CEO Mandy Ginsberg said the company is "flattered that Facebook is coming into our space - and sees the global opportunity that we do - as Tinder continues to skyrocket."

"We're surprised at the timing given the amount of personal and sensitive data that comes with this territory," Ginsberg's statement read. "Regardless, we're going to continue to delight our users through product innovation and relentless focus on relationship success. We understand this category better than anyone. Facebook's entry will only be invigorating to all of us."

In a statement, a Hinge spokesperson said Facebook copied the dating app's tone.

"Facebook could have copied swiping apps in its attempt to enter the dating space, but instead they copied Hinge," the spokesperson said. "It validates our anti-swipe, pro-dating movement, which we'll continue to lead through exciting innovations that connect our members for outstanding first dates. We're happy to see that our movement to create meaningful connections, not games or hookups, is catching on."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 307519

Reported Deaths: 7096
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto20784248
Hinds19894408
Harrison17493302
Rankin13316275
Jackson13099243
Madison9896210
Lee9859169
Jones8293160
Forrest7523146
Lauderdale7189237
Lowndes6265144
Lamar610784
Lafayette6028117
Washington5280132
Bolivar4770129
Oktibbeha455297
Panola4442103
Pearl River4420139
Warren4281118
Marshall4273100
Pontotoc416472
Monroe4057132
Union403775
Neshoba3988176
Lincoln3871108
Hancock372185
Leflore3468124
Sunflower329389
Tate322781
Pike3181104
Scott310572
Yazoo304368
Alcorn297764
Itawamba296876
Copiah293065
Coahoma289677
Simpson287484
Tippah284868
Prentiss275659
Marion265979
Wayne261341
Leake261173
Grenada254982
Covington254580
Adams245982
Newton244859
George237847
Winston225981
Tishomingo222067
Jasper219748
Attala213373
Chickasaw204857
Holmes186471
Clay182454
Stone179131
Clarke176876
Tallahatchie175540
Calhoun163230
Yalobusha158836
Smith158634
Walthall130543
Greene129433
Lawrence126323
Noxubee125933
Montgomery125542
Perry125138
Carroll120826
Amite120141
Webster113432
Jefferson Davis105432
Tunica102525
Claiborne101330
Benton97225
Kemper95226
Humphreys94332
Franklin81923
Quitman78916
Choctaw72817
Jefferson64828
Wilkinson64727
Sharkey49617
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 519071

Reported Deaths: 10712
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson754131487
Mobile37774798
Madison33868494
Tuscaloosa25283443
Montgomery23969565
Shelby23112238
Baldwin20638300
Lee15524165
Calhoun14286311
Morgan14140268
Etowah13664345
Marshall11957219
Houston10383278
Elmore9994200
Limestone9814147
Cullman9475188
St. Clair9429234
Lauderdale9218227
DeKalb8747181
Talladega8060171
Walker7092275
Jackson6755110
Autauga6727103
Blount6488135
Colbert6205130
Coffee5401112
Dale4768110
Russell428938
Franklin419982
Chilton4083109
Covington4053114
Tallapoosa3893146
Escambia388074
Dallas3527149
Chambers3500122
Clarke346360
Marion3066100
Pike305875
Lawrence295395
Winston272372
Bibb256458
Marengo248661
Geneva245875
Pickens232959
Barbour224955
Hale218775
Butler212366
Fayette208960
Henry187844
Cherokee182044
Randolph176941
Monroe171540
Washington164038
Macon154848
Clay149454
Crenshaw149357
Cleburne146041
Lamar139334
Lowndes136453
Wilcox124327
Bullock121340
Conecuh109028
Perry107926
Sumter102932
Coosa99328
Greene90734
Choctaw58724
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