The maker of a dating app is being sued by a former marketing executing in another case where technology companies are being hauled over the coals over their treatment of female employees, writes Nick Farrell.
Former Tinder marketing Vice President Whitney Wolfe is suing the popular dating-app company for sexual harassment and discrimination.
Her lawsuit lists a series of alleged incidents of harassment over roughly 18 months starting in late 2012 and targets Chief Executive Officer Sean Rad and the company’s chief marketing officer, Justin Mateen.
Wolfe said that the pair removed her title as co-founder because she was a woman, and that Mateen insulted her, including calling her a whore at a company party. Rad ignored her complaints.
The company has suspended Mateen pending an ongoing internal investigation, however it does appear that he sent Wolfe “inappropriate” messages.
The company condemns these messages, but believes that Wolfe’s allegations with respect to Tinder and its management are unfounded.”
Wolfe claims it was her who came up with the name “Tinder” for the service in mid-2012, shortly after its creation, because there were worries that its original name, Matchbox, was too similar to Match.com.
Wolfe became romantically involved with Mateen, her boss, who joined the company in late 2012.
In November 2012 she was designated a co-founder but Mateen told her that having a “girl founder” devalued the company, according to the lawsuit and in November 2013, Mateen and Rad removed her co-founder title.
Needless to say the romance broke down and Mateen called her “a desperate loser” in a marketing meeting and told Rad and others she was an alcoholic. He also sent her a series of harassing texts, it states. Wolfe complained to Rad, who would ignore her “or call her a dramatic or emotional girl,” the suit says, adding that in one meeting, Rad told her it was her job to “keep Justin calm.”
The last straw was when Mateen called her a whore at a company party in April and she quit.