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Meet Motto, the New Gay Dating App From the Creator of Grindr

“No more headless torsos."

Goodbye Grindr bloop?

Back in 2009, Joel Simkhai launched Grindr, the groundbreaking gay dating app which revolutionized the queer hookup scene. Now, in his first venture since leaving Grindr in 2018, Simkhai has co-founded a new free membership-based gay dating app, Motto. The app launched earlier this week and is currently available to users in New York in Miami.

According to the press release, Motto “focuses on finding you the right people, not just the closest - on the quality of interactions, not the quantity.” The app will show users "five to ten profiles per day," similar to other  dating apps like Hinge.

"Every profile and photo is reviewed and verified," reads the Motto screenshots from the Apple app store. "Every photo has a face. No catfish. No headless torsos."

Courtesy of Motto

"We talked to a lot of people, and we wanted to build an experience that allows people to stand for themselves and represent themselves and to be comfortable putting themselves out there," Simkhai told Gizmodo. "With Grindr, I think we revolutionized how queer people started meeting again or how they were able to meet using their phones. That was 13 years ago. A lot has changed. We’re responding to those changes."

Motto co-founder and Head of Product Alex Hostetler said: “We heard a lot of frustration and fatigue with the existing apps. Fundamentally, we think hookup culture needs a refresh. The gay apps are good if you’re just looking for someone close, right now. But the process is impersonal, addictive, repetitive and often toxic.”

Simkhai says Motto users should "spend no more than 10 minutes a day on the app and that you could find someone that quickly and that you’re not spending the lion’s share of your day searching for someone." He also adds how they are hoping to "create a community where people are respectful toward one another, where they’re not being discriminatory in any fashion. We have no tolerance for that."

Courtesy of Motto

Motto co-founders Alex Hostetler and Joel Simkhai

“The vast majority of gay and queer people aren’t satisfied with their online hookup and dating experiences," Simkhai said in the press release. "Motto’s goal is to help you find someone you’re into without frustration, reduce the amount of time you spend on hookup apps to just a few minutes a day, and bring people together in the physical world."

“We built Motto to... simplify the process of hooking up, and bring back the fun in finding someone you’re into," he continues. "Motto should be just as positive for your mental health as it is for your sex life.”

Motto is live now in New York City and Miami, "with plans to expand across the United States and globally as the waitlist in each city grows." Will you be adding Motto to your dating app rotation?

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