Popular dating apps in Pakistan have been decidedly banned for promoting ""immoral" and "inappropriate" content. Among the apps banned are Tinder, Grindr, Skout, SayHi and Tagged.
The Pakistan Telecommunications Authority (PTA), clarified that due to the influx of indecent content according to by-laws and regulations, they had issued notices to the management teams of said applications, requesting them to remove their dating services in Pakistan to avoid encouraging improper behaviour and having an over-all negative impact.
The PTA released a statement, 'In view of negative effects of immoral/indecent content streaming through above applications, PTA issued notices to the management of above mentioned platforms for the purpose of removing dating services & moderate live streaming content in accordance with local laws of Pakistan.. '. The Authoritarian body further moved to block these applications upon not receiving a response within the given time frame.
Despite issues orders for blocking these applications, the PTA can reconsider blocking the dating sites if they adhere to the regulations presented by the Telecommunications Authority and emphasise on moderating the sort of live streaming available. However, the PTA has met with its fair share of support as well as opposition to 'moral policing'.
Tinder, a popular dating service abroad and in Pakistan, stated that it was open to discuss moderating its services and meeting with the PTA to further reach a substantial decision regarding the matter.
Bytes For All's Digital Director, Shahzad Ahmad told AFP, “If adults choose to be on an app, it is not for the state to dictate whether they should use it or not,”. This is not the first time PTA has faced controversy regarding its decisions to ban apps for indecent or 'inflammatory' content. Previously, it banned Bigo, issued a warning to TikTok, and temporarily banned PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG), leading to the E-commerce industry actively protesting against the move.
All we can do now is anticipate the next decision to be taken regarding the future of dating applications in Pakistan.