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It’s not an app that's for people who are rich or white or in other ways privileged, but it’s for people who are only comfortable around their own kind, who already share their values, their aesthetic.I’ve met a lot of people in New York who are intensely tribalistic, and that's what Raya caters to.”And this is what really irks me about the app—it confuses wealth and status with creativity and coolness.Raya says it values creative achievements, but they’re not interested in and stay in on Saturday nights to read Walter Benjamin instead of going to Paul’s Baby Grand. Recently, the app rejected a friend of mine—an Iranian-American Doctor of Philosophy. Because Raya is like being back in high school, where the hierarchy of popularity is superficial and undeserved.
The problem, of course, is that whenever something is defined as being elite or exclusive, it tends to attract status-conscious douchebags.
On Tinder you have total autonomy: You’re presented with a bunch of random people and are free to choose who think is hot or interesting.
Raya is mob mentality: It’s an app about liking people that other people like.
It’s not like Linked In, where everyone understands that you're there for work, and you can apply for a job.
Instead, Raya creates the promise of something romantic, but it’s actually just people trying to be around other cooler people.” He shrugged.