Since the community so far is overwhelmingly in favor of making it clear that Couchers.org is not a dating platform, let’s move on to the next level of the discussion. (Thanks @Jesse!)
For the purpose of clarity, I propose we define dating as “seeking romantic partners.” Thus, Couchers.org is not a platform for seeking romantic partners.
Our ideal outcome is that people sign up to our platform with the intention of making friends. What they do after they become friends is not our concern. We can all agree that Couchers.org is not against people forming romantic partnerships with people they meet through the platform, if that is what naturally happens.
Sub-behaviors of “dating” that we may want to deter could be -
- Choosing who to meet/host/stay with based on physical appearance/attraction
- Sending unsolicited messages with romantic/flirty intent (i.e. “hello beautiful” “You’re very cute let’s be friends” “you have a nice smile”)
- Attending in-person events/hangouts and flirting with other attendees
- Feel free to add more…
Issues of physical safety (such as sexual assault, coercion, rape, non-consensual encounters) are an entirely different discussion, so let’s keep them out of this thread.
All that aside, the main question is: what tools can we give our users to help prevent people from using the platform for dating?