At its annual developer conference – F8 – that took place early May, Facebook announced it was working on a dating service. Three months later, images of the service, which many compared to Tinder, has surfaced online.
An app researcher, Jane Manchun Wong, tweeted images of the Facebook app with features currently limited to Facebook employees only. A report by the Verge quotes Facebook’s confirmation in a statement.
The app screen includes an accompanying message:
For Facebook Employees
This product is for US Facebook employees who have opted-in to dogfooding Facebook’s new dating product. The purpose for this dogfooding is to test the end-to-end product experience for bugs and confusing UI. This is not meant for dating your coworkers.
We ask all participants to only use dummy data for your dating profile and preferences. We will purge the dummy data prior to public launch. Dogfooding this product is completely voluntary and has no impact on your environment.
As a reminder, Facebook policies such as harassment and code of conduct apply to all dogfooding activities. This product is confidential.
Dogfooding is a term used in IT circles, and refers to the use of a company’s product by its own staff before being made available to the end consumer. As can be seen in the app flow, you are prompted to set your privacy and also hide your profile from your current set of Facebook friends, a concern that has been highlighted by users on social media ever since Facebook announced its plans. The app offers a wide range of gender options – Man, Trans-Man, Woman, Trans-Woman, and Non-Binary with the option to opt for preferences with the same set of options.