Mimesis Law
16 July 2019

Three’s A Crowd – According To Tinder

May 25, 2016 (Mimesis Law) — Popular monogamous dating app Tinder is suing ménage à trois facilitator app 3nder for trademark infringement. Tinder, which is owned by the dating conglomerate Match Group – responsible for other sites such as OK Cupid and Match.com – is traditionally used for singles to meet other like-minded singles in a defined radius. Rival app 3nder is aimed at couples and individuals looking for less conventionally-numbered encounters.

Tinder is seeking to shut down its competitor on the basis that the confusing similarity between the two names may lead consumers to mistakenly believe that 3nder is sponsored by Tinder and therefore would gain an unfair advantage as a result. In response to the lawsuit, 3nder founder Dimo Trifonov launched a bizarre social media campaign aimed at shaming the dating giant. Trifonov said that the sleepless hours he spent contemplating the lawsuit made him to run out of socks and leading him to the idea of the title of the campaign “Tinder Suck My Socks” which encourages people to tweet pictures at Tinder of their dirty socks.

As Trifonov acknowledges, Tinder has the muscle to bankrupt the fledgling company. While this is true, what is more worrying for 3nder is that Tinder most likely will have a leg to stand on in this infringement case. As Tinder’s lawyers explained in the lawsuit, not only do the two companies operate in the same niche industry, but phonetically, “3nder” or “Thrinder” is objectively similar to the term “Tinder”. However, Trifonov believes that they are being unfairly targeted since firstly, the name 3nder is pronounced differently in other languages and secondly, Tinder has not taken issue with the similarity of other dating companies’ names such as gay dating app Grindr.

Trifonov maintains “Our mission and our values could not be more distinct from those of Tinder. We have and always will put ethics and aesthetics first … With so many sexualities and relationship structures left out of Tinder, there is room for all of us. No one should have a monopoly on love”.

There you have it folks. This case is more than about money and casual sexual encounters. It’s about LOVE.

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  • maz
    27 May 2016 at 10:11 am - Reply

    “…Tinder has not taken issue with the similarity of other dating companies’ names such as gay dating app Grindr.”

    There’s a [hypocritical] reason for that:

    Grindr: Initial release, March 25, 2009
    Tinder: Initial release, September 12, 2012