Facebook built Dating to be privacy-safe, hoping to avoid the awkwardness of friends or family checking out your romance profile. But now Facebook has found a way to let you silently express your affection for a friend without them knowing unless they reciprocate.
Facebook announced today at its F8 conference that Dating is opening in 14 more countries, bringing the total to 19. It will launch in the U.S. before the end of the year. Dating brings with it a new feature called Secret Crush that expands it beyond strangers and friends-of-friends. Choose up to 9 friends you like-like. If they’ve opted into Facebook Dating, they’ll get a notification that some friend has a crush on them. If they add you as a Secret Crush too, you’re both notified and can chat on Messenger.
Facebook Dating product manager Charmaine Hung tells me that “I have 2,000 Facebook friends. I’m not best friends with all 2,000 people, and there’s a good chance that one of that could be a really good match with me. I trust them, I appreciate them and I know we’re compatible. The only thing missing is knowing if we’re both interested in being more than just friends without the fear of rejection if you were to do this in real life.”