What’s the difference between being racist and just honestly reflecting feedback? You may or may not have seen this ad doing its rounds around Facebook lately, for a new dating app developed by Singaporean Mr Herbert Eng.
Highblood, the app, already sounds really elitist from the get go. It’s obvious that’s the theme Mr Eng was going for, an exclusive dating app where every user is carefully selected by existing users before being able to join the community for some swiping action.
As a new user registers, he or she will have to go through a “covenant”, made up of five random existing users of the app. Only when the prospective user gets at least 3 approvals, can they be accepted. Should they fail, there is a choice between paying $100 to immediately enter, or waiting 12 hours before facing a new covenant.
This is taking elitism to a new low. Not only are you judging a book by the cover, you’re aggressively selecting what sort of books you get to choose from.
That’s not even talking about the outright racism in the ad above.
“No banglas, no maids, no uglies”
Either we’re all secretly racist assholes, or there’s something up with the ad right there. According to the founder, that’s apparently the relationship selection criteria for our majority Chinese population. He insisted that it is not discrimination. Is it racist if we have a racial preference for relationships?
This is, of course, an uncomfortable question.
Regardless of the validity of the idea, however, the fact remains that the ad is at worst goddamn racist, and at best incredibly tactless.
We all know many of us do the sort of screening that Highblood does for you by ourselves, in other dating apps like Tinder. Not many of us can claim innocence in this. But to throw it out into the open, to use this unspoken, uncomfortable fact as advertisement is just going to offend everyone.
Gotta give it to them though, they’ve got some sick publicity from this controversy.
Featured Image: Facebook (Highblood)