One of the crypto world’s biggest Valentine’s Day stories has turned out to be largely overblown. Since late last week, reports have started to suggest that Tinder will begin “accepting Dogecoin.” Meanwhile, other sources indicate that you can already “spend Dogecoin” on the popular dating app. However, these assertions are, in Doge-speak, “such misleading.”
Yes, You Can Buy a Subscription
Although it is possible to buy a Tinder subscription with Dogecoin indirectly, this is not the adoption triumph that it is being painted as. The option of buying a membership with crypto isn’t actually specific to Tinder—whose users will probably never find out about the offer—nor is the deal isolated to Dogecoin holders.
At the heart of the story is Bitrefill, a company that sells vouchers and gift cards that can be purchased with cryptocurrency. The company accepts Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Dash, and Dogecoin as payment. Last week, the company announced the addition of Tinder vouchers to its offerings just in time for Valentine’s Day.
Need a date for Valentine's Day? Did you know you can pay for #Tinder premium subscriptions with cryptocurrency using Bitrefill gift cards? Learn how here: https://t.co/GflbweJcTA pic.twitter.com/nOQnuokMMU
— Bitrefill (@bitrefill) February 11, 2019
No, Tinder Isn’t Actually Involved
Not only will Bitrefill have no impact on anyone’s Tinder experience, the dating app itself hasn’t acknowledged the offer or crypto in general. Nor does Tinder need to get involved: Bitrefill’s so-called Tinder voucher is actually a generic voucher for Google Play and the Apple App Store.
This approach allows Bitrefill to offer gift cards for countless apps and websites without directly cooperating with those apps. Furthermore, companies like Bitrefill are a dime a dozen: competitors like Bidali and Gyft similarly allow users to buy gift cards with crypto.
Although the proliferation of gift card companies may be a good indicator that cryptocurrency carries mainstream appeal, these companies have virtually no relation to the cryptocurrencies they accept—least of all Dogecoin.
False Reports Run Rampant
Unfortunately, misleading reports of adoption and partnerships aren’t all that unusual: the fact that Ripple has loose ties to a recent Corda-SWIFT partnership was recently overhyped by the crypto community. Sometimes, companies bring the problem on themselves: a Microsoft representative once implied a partnership with IOTA where none existed. Some have even called the trend “ridiculous.”
To its credit, Bitrefill is not actually responsible for most of the hype that has been circulating over the past few days, as most of the Dogecoin buzz has been generated by news outlets and social media. And on the brighter side, Dogecoin has seen some real adoption over the past year: SALT Lending, Yahoo! Finance, and Robinhood have all brought the coin on board in recent months.
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