Updated: Feb 25
By: Nicole Cohen
With social media dominating all aspects of Gen Z and millennial lives, it is hardly a surprise that online influence has seeped into our romantic endeavors. Dating apps are slowly replacing the classic desire for love at first sight with love at first swipe. And with public interactions limited in the wake of coronavirus, more and more people are turning to dating apps to excavate themselves from social isolation.
Danielle Dietzek and Julie Griggs are striving to further innovate the dating app experience into a safer, even more social space for young people with their double dating app Fourplay. These two female healthcare workers, a nurse practitioner and physician assistant, respectively, actually founded Fourplay by accident in 2019. After experiencing their own struggles with traditional dating platforms like Hinge, Tinder and Bumble, Dietzek and Griggs identified similar difficulties of navigating the online dating world as young women: fear of catfishing and first date awkwardness coupled with protecting yourself from stranger danger often leaves young women with a long checklist of dating precautions. Their proposed solution? Double dating.
The two women teamed up and created a joint profile on a dating app in the hopes of finding other friends looking to couple up. When their matches appeared receptive and even excited about their rogue attempt at online double dating, they realized they were onto something...
And thus, Fourplay was born. The double dating app, equipped with a video chat option in the wake of coronavirus, allows pairs of friends to create joint dating profiles to meet other pairs. Once two pairs match, the four people are put into a group message where they can begin chatting and eventually make plans to meet up.
Dietzek’s and Griggs’s intention behind creating Fourplay stems from their backgrounds in healthcare. They use double dating to address the implications of mental and physical health in the era of dating apps. In terms of mental health, double dating with a close friend alleviates the stress and pressure of first date jitters; we tend to be our most authentic selves when around friends. And in terms of physical health, double dating creates an inherent buddy system, protecting people from the potential threats of meeting internet strangers.
Ultimately, Fourplay promotes safe dating habits while also transforming first dates from awkward to inclusive social events with friends. And while coronavirus continues to limit our social interactions, Fourplay allows you to kill two birds with one stone by dating while also hanging out with your friends.