Letters Page 124
Last Autumn BCN’s letters page highlighted the challenges faced by bi people on many dating websites, which insist on users picking exclusively male or female as the gender of partner they are looking for.
This has since been picked up by other sections of the LGBT media and one of the sites involved, Match.com, has announced a new policy – that bisexual users will no longer have to pay double if they want to be found by both male and female prospective partners. Bis will just have to contact customer services and have a second profile set up for free.
I think it’s a messy bodge to try and fix the problem.
While it’s welcome that bi users of the Match dating website will no longer be paying double, they will be expected to maintain two user profiles and flick between them. Better to let users identify as gay, bi or straight and search on potential partners based on that attribute too – so bisexual singles don’t find themselves on dates with biphobes, and they don’t have to come out part way through the dating process – quite possibly when confronted with their “secret” other profile.
It all highlights how Match’s model fails genderqueer and intersex users too, with its quaint binary dating model.
The call to ‘just’ contact customer services and come out to them in order to have a second profile set up is a weird extra bar to participation for bi people.
I’d like to say a big thank you to all the bi groups that have publicised our LGBTQ+ singing group in central London. A big special thanks to John from Bi Meet-up who has kindly promoted our singing group and also Nickie from over 50’s Bi group for being very supportive. We now have a friendly group of inclusive LGBT people, including bi and bi-positive people, who come and sing at Westminster Quakers after the Quaker Lesbian & Gay Fellowship in central London on the second Saturday of each month.
We usually sing fun, easy uplifting tunes for about an hour and 20mins, then have tea and biccies and chat, leaving time for people going on to clubs or pubs to do that or stay and socialise with the group. There’s no need to read music or think you can sing. It’s not competitive and we’ve no plans to perform. It’s simply a Bi positive space that is also truly LGBTQ+ friendly, to come and sing in a wonderful friendly environment, and all are very welcome. We’ve now set up a meetup group ourselves (thanks to John), and it is www.meetup.com/ManyvoicesLGBT/ Next dates until the summer are 12th April, 10th May and 14th June. 7.30pm til 9pm, Westminster Quaker Meeting House. £8 on door. Webpage www.many-voices.co.uk
All warmly welcomed! See you there,
Gaynor & Tati, Many Voices, London