Transgender ‘camgirl’ sues dating app for discrimination after it allegedly deleted her profile

Transgender ‘camgirl’ sues dating app for discrimination after it allegedly deleted her profile
A transgender woman has filed a lawsuit against Tinder, claiming the dating website discriminated against her after she updated her profile. (Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images)

[Update: This story has been updated with Tinder’s response.]

A transgender woman in Portland, Oregon, has filed a lawsuit against the dating app Tinder for allegedly deleting her account after she changed her profile to show that she identified as a woman, Willamette Weekly reported.

Ariel Hawkins, who has not undergone gender change surgery, told TMZ that she received an email that said she violated the app’s terms of service.

The lawsuit, filed in Multnomah County Circuit Court Wednesday, calls for a court order to prohibit discrimination against transgender Tinder users in Oregon.

“I don’t think the company understands trans people and they don’t appreciate how we may represent ourselves,” adding she believes the company wants to remove all transpeople from the app.

What’s the story?

Hawkins claims the company deleted her account within hours of adding the phrase, “camgirl on the side. Pre-op trans woman,” but she said they failed to explain what term or terms she violated.

A camgirl is someone who poses erotically on the internet using a webcam.

She said the phrase was an attempt to be “transparent and straightforward,” adding that it’s easier to date if potential partners are aware from the beginning.

“I’ve never had this happen with another dating app before,” Hawkins told Willamette Week. “Every dating app I’ve ever used or signed up for, I’ve always tried to disclose [my transgender identity] and be upfront with that because I don’t want to run into any harmful situations.”

According to Hawkins, the photos on her profile followed the Tinder guidelines, and she didn’t provide links to inappropriate websites.

“I wanted to just find love like everybody else,” Hawkins told Willamette Week. “I’m just looking to date. I was trying to find a boyfriend.”

What else?

Tinder made policy changes in 2016 and incorporated a list of nearly 40 non-cisgender options, including transgender.

It even launched a campaign using the hashtag: #AllTypesAllSwipes.

In an email statement to TheBlaze, a Tinder spokesperson said, “While we do not comment on pending litigation, we can say, categorically, that we do not ban users from Tinder due to gender identity. At Tinder, we fundamentally believe that gender is not binary and we support inclusivity and acceptance of all people, which is why we offer more than 37 gender identity options for our users in the United States.”