Dating app Tinder has suspended one of its male co-founders after a female co-founder brought a sexual harassment lawsuit against the company.
Whitney Wolfe, Tinder co-founder and former marketing vice president, alleges that two of her co-founders, Sean Rad and Justin Mateen, "subjected [her] to a barrage of horrendously sexist, racist, and otherwise inappropriate comments, emails, and text messages."
Wolfe alleges that Mateen called her a "whore" in front of Rad, the company's CEO, and threatened to take away her title as co-founder because having a female co-founder would make the company "seem like a joke." To make matters worse, Wolfe also claims that Rad ignored her complaints, which she says led to her being "bullied" into resigning in April. Reuters reports that in the lawsuit, Wolfe is asking for "compensatory damages, including lost pay, punitive damages, and restitution."
IAC, one of Tinder's parent companies, released a statement confirming Mateen sent Wolfe messages "containing inappropriate content," but the company believes Wolfe's "allegations with respect to Tinder and its management are unfounded." IAC put Mateen on leave from the company, pending an investigation. IAC and Tinder's other parent company, Match.com, are named as defendants in the lawsuit.
"I had hoped this would be resolved confidentially, but after months of failed attempts, I have decided to pursue this suit," Wolfe said in a statement.