Sex & Dating | August 14, 2020 12:34 pm

There’s a New Online Dating Platform for People Who Don’t Want to Social Distance

"Love in a Covid Climate" is a forum for singles who don't think a little pandemic should get in the way of their dating lives

dating coronavirus
No mask, no problem.
Getty Images

Nearly a decade since dating apps went mainstream, online dating seems to have developed its very own Rule 34: If you can think of it, there’s a dating app for it.

Thanks to British commentator/coronavirus lockdown skeptic Toby Young, that now includes an online dating forum where coronavirus-defiant singles can find love, sans face masks.

The platform, called Love in a Covid Climate, launched Sunday as a forum on Young’s “Lockdown Sceptics” site, where anti-social distancers are encouraged to “Stay skeptical. End the lockdown. Save lives.”

Young announced the new online dating venture on Twitter, describing Love in a Covid Climate as a place where “singles who feel the same way about the virus can meet and not have to worry about differing attitudes to social distancing.”

Unsurprisingly, the move was met with plenty of pushback and ridicule from critics who suggested the platform might be better titled “OKStupid,” “Lovesick,” or “Unhinged,” per the Guardian.

Young, however, maintains that the forum isn’t just a place for negligent coronavirus doubters, but rather a judgment-free corner of the dating landscape for a presumably enlightened set of daters who don’t believe the risk of coronavirus transmission should affect their dating lives.

“I’ve created Love in a Covid Climate for people who are properly informed about the risk, realise how small it is and want to meet other scientifically literate people who haven’t succumbed to what Bernard-Henri Lévy calls ‘psychotic delirium,’” Young said.

Online dating platforms have been working to adapt to the changing climate of love during a pandemic for months, introducing new remote dating features and encouraging users to be mindful of social distancing guidelines. More recently, some mainstream dating apps have introduced profile badges users can select to convey the level of pandemic precaution they’re looking to exercise in their dating lives. Bumble allows users to identify their COVID-19 dating preferences as “virtual,” “socially-distanced” or “socially-distanced w/ mask,” leaving those who are willing to openly brave the pandemic with a fellow maskless internet stranger no option but to simply skip that question.

Thanks to Young’s forum, such users finally have a less subtle way of expressing their willingness to disregard social distancing guidelines. Did the internet really need a dedicated forum for this? Probably not. But was it going to happen anyway? Obviously.


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