DailyDot- Dating is all about preference: and in 2016, every preference has its own dating app. For plus-size women and their admirers, an app called WooPlus is the latest effort to create a vibrant niche dating community.
It all started because of a viral video: Co-founders Neil Raman, Michelle Li and some other friends were chatting online about a video showing a social experiment where men were set up with women they thought were thin, only to find in real life that the women were actually heavier.
"There was a lot of mocking, and basically making her feel lesser of a person because of her size," Li told the Daily Dot in a phone interview. "We thought, 'that happens a lot.'" More importantly, the friends knew people who specifically want to date larger women do exist. "We thought why don’t we come up with a dating app to see just what kind of result we’d get out of it," Li said. Since launching in November, the free app has 10,000 users worldwide and growing.
WooPlus is not the first of its kind in terms of serving this audience. The founders drew inspiration from other existing BBW ("big, beautiful women") sites like LargeFriends and Big & Beautiful People Meet. But the apps for these sites "are more like the mobile versions of their PC sites," according to a spokesperson for WooPlus, explaining its aim be more like "Tinder for BBW" while also creating a safe space for women of size.
Taking women that are easy targets -literally and figuratively- and isolating them in one easily downloadable app? Genius! What could possibly go wrong? What better way to avoid the mockery and harassment that's become an unfortunate byproduct of pseudo-anonymous internet dating than by giving all women with unfortunate body types a safe space to spread their extra flabby wings socially? It's resourceful AND efficient. Even the upstanding citizens of the online community can't screw this up. After all, they have never taken an idea that was conceived with the most honorable of intent and repurposed it to take advantage of its weaknesses!
Doesn't it seem like it should be this easy? Taking all the fish in the sea and segregating them into appropriately labeled ponds where they are more likely to run into other fish of the same weight class? It's too bad that's not how the world works. All this really did was make it easier for overqualified fisherman to sandbag and try to catch the larger, slower fish that are all huddled in one small area and -by nature- hungrier for the hook. Sure, there will be plenty of hefty men and chubby chasers that will download that app and treat women with respect. However, there will be just many guys in the middle of drought that will download it thinking it's members are easy pickings. The guys that will use the theory that fat girls give better head to justify it's use. Those are the guys that will act like they're too good to be there -even though they are there- and will disturb the sanctity of all-heavyweight dating. It's not the fat kids that ruin fat camp for everyone else. It's the one average sized kid who comes in thinking he's Zac Efron by comparison. Again, in theory this is great idea, but no great idea is without human error, especially when it's platform is the internet.