Grindr and hook-up apps issue Covid-19 warning

As the world prepares for the coronavirus pandemic by quarantine and excessive sanitation, Grindr and other gay dating apps have begun issuing alerts to users with guidance about the risk of Covid-19.

The rise of the pandemic has had several countries minimise the spread of the virus by means of staying at home as a form of “social distancing” efforts, but as public events and social gatherings are declared unsafe in affected countries, hook-ups via apps remain open for business.

Alerts sent to Grindr users in the UK presented useful tips to remind users to be safe. The warning advised people to “wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds,” especially when one has coughed or sneezed.

“Use hand sanitizer when you’re out and about,” reads the alert, as well as to “Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands”.

Foremost, the app wants you to “listen to your body and stay home” if you are not feeling very well.

Grindr directs you to the World Health Organization (WHO) guidance lines, which states: “Stay at home if you begin to feel unwell, even with mild symptoms such as headache and slight runny nose, until you recover.

“Avoiding contact with others and visits to medical facilities will allow these facilities to operate more effectively and help protect you and others from possible COVID-19 and other viruses”.

Rival app, Scruff warns: “Your wellbeing is important to us. The health and safety of the community is our priority.

“Here are some steps from the World Health Organization you can take to protect yourself from the new Coronavirus (Covid-19):  Wash your hands frequently. Maintain distance between yourself and those who are coughing or sneezing.

“Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth. Cover your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. If you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical care early”.

Another gay dating app, Hornet, wants users to stay online to “maintain a social network, but remotely”.

“Social contact helps us stay mentally healthy and fights boredom,” advises the app.