Grindr removed from China’s app stores amid crackdown on online content

Grindr App
  • Grindr has allegedly been taken down from Apple and Android app stores in China.
  • The country’s Cyberspace Administration announced on Jan. 25 a new push to crack down on online rumors, pornography and illegal content.
  • Although Grindr has been taken down from China’s app stores, Blued, the country’s alternative gay dating app, is still up and running.

Popular LGBTQ dating app Grindr has allegedly been taken down from app stores in China.

Grindr was removed from the Apple App Store in China on Jan. 27, and it is also nowhere to be seen in the country’s Android store, according to AFP. Google does not run an app store in China.

The removal of the app comes as the country cracks down on “vulgar internet celebrities” and “effeminate” male stars.

In July, China’s other popular social media app, WeChat, deleted several accounts operated by LGBTQ university students. In August, authorities banned children under 18 from playing video games for more than three hours each week.

The country’s Cyberspace Administration also announced on Jan. 25 a new push to crack down on online rumors, pornography and illegal content “to create a civilized, healthy, festive and peaceful atmosphere for online public opinion during the Spring Festival,” NextShark previously reported.

Grindr was founded by Joel Simkhai in March 2009. It was then owned by Chinese video game development company Beijing Kunlun Tech Co. before it was sold to investors in the U.S. for more than $600 million in 2020, Bloomberg reported.

Apple outlined its “human rights policy” in a 2020 document, explaining the company’s viewpoint on censorship.

“We believe in the critical importance of an open society in which information flows freely, and we’re convinced the best way we can continue to promote openness is to remain engaged, even where we may disagree with a country’s laws,” Apple stated. “We’re required to comply with local laws, and at times there are complex issues about which we may disagree with governments and other stakeholders on the right path forward.” 

Although Grindr has been taken down from China’s app stores, Blued, the country’s alternative gay dating app, is still up and running.

Feature Image via Leon Neal/Getty Images

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