On Mesh, people only see a trans person’s profile if they’ve already indicated they’re open to dating transgender people.
This has the potential to make online dating more thorough and more fruitful, but safety and acceptance for trans people who date online may take more than an algorithm.
Typically, she discloses after she's gotten to know someone.
Soon after Colleen made a profile on OKCupid she agreed to a date—just to test out the site.
While some have criticized OKCupid for showing people false or manipulated content as an experiment, the site's failure to accommodate transgender users may be a larger and more long-standing ethical dilemma.
In 2013, an online petition asking OKCupid to accommodate trans and genderqueer people received more than 1,000 signatures.
Like OKCupid, Mesh has an algorithm that helps determine compatibility. If you specify characteristics or preferences you don’t want potential dates to have (Republican, vegan, straight), Mesh will block those people from seeing your profile.
He thinks people will figure it out anyway when they meet him.
But not every transgender person wants to be this open.
He joined the online dating site OKCupid six years ago, about three years before he transitioned.
He dates men and women, both transgender and cisgender (a term for people who aren't trans).