OKCupid Unveils New Options for Gender, Sexuality

OKCupid Unveils New Options for Gender, Sexuality

Popular Internet dating site OKCupid began gradually unrolling a slew of new options for users to self-identify their sexual orientation and gender identity this week, reports pop culture site NewNowNext.

The move is reminiscent of one by social media giant Facebook, which in February unveiled more than 50 gender options to U.S. users and over 70 to U.K. users, earning praise from many transgender advocates and allies.

A select group of OKCupid users have been given the option to try out the new feature, allowing them to identify as more than male or female, gay, straight, or bisexual, notes NewNowNext.

Updated options for gender identity include agender, androgynous, bigender, cis man, cis woman, gender fluid, genderqueer, gender nonconforming, hijra, intersex, nonbinary, pangender, transfeminine, transgender, transmasculine, transsexual, trans man, trans woman, and two-spirit.

Users testing out the new options for sexual orientation can now list themselves as asexual, demisexual, heteroflexible, homoflexible, pansexual, queer, questioning, and sapiosexual (an orientation toward intelligence as the most attractive sexual trait).

Home to more than 3.5 million members worldwide, OKCupid previously showed its support for queer users in April, when it briefly blocked members from accessing the site using the Mozilla Firefox Web browser, amid outrage aimed at newly named Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich's donation to the campaign to pass California's Proposition 8, which temporarily repealed marriage equality in the state. Eich stepped down shortly afterward, having faced pressure from numerous progressive groups to disavow his support of marriage discrimination or resign.

During the controversy, OKCupid's CEO Sam Yagan also came under fire for donating to an antigay political candidate in 2004, though Yagan promptly apologized, said he would not support that candidate today, and affirmed his support for marriage equality. 

OKCupid is also reportedly aware that its environment can be uncomfortable or unsafe for trans users. As Samantha Allen noted in an August op-ed at The Advocate, the site warns users in its privacy controls to not attempt to delete trans people from the service by reporting their profiles.

OKCupid has not yet announced if and when it will make expanded sexuality and gender options available to all users.

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