Bumble, the female-first social network, and Top Chef star Sam Talbot, have partnered to fight online catfishing through the debut of an experiential pop-up food trailer dubbed “The Great Catch”. In addition featuring fried and blackened catfish fare from the acclaimed chef and restaurateur, “The Great Catch” will also showcase a Photo Verification Booth, enabling users to verify their profiles on Bumble and do their part to put an end to catfishing. “The Great Catch” experience kicks off today during New York Fashion Week, and was created in partnership with Austin-based creative agency, Preacher.
“Catfishing has been a serious issue for many people looking to meet others online and we at Bumble make user safety our #1 priority,” said Alexandra Williamson el-Effendi, Head of Brand for Bumble. “Photo Verification is our answer to keeping our users protected from catfishing and partnering with Sam gives us a very fun and interactive way of both generating awareness and giving New Yorkers access to some buzzed about food!”
“I love Bumble and it seems like everyone I know is on the app, which has made this such a cool project to be a part of,” added Talbot. “Being able to make some great food for a great cause while having fun is what it’s all about.”
Bumble is the first connection app in the U.S. to enlist facial recognition technology, requiring users to take a photo of themselves in real-time, which then gets scanned against other images in their profile to ensure a match. Once verified, the user receives a blue checkmark alongside their profile. The Photo Verification feature will help provide peace of mind to users by aiming to eliminate fake profiles that exist across online dating apps. Bumble will be rolling Photo Verification out into its other in-app platforms including BFF and Bizz over the next few months.
“The Great Catch” trailer makes its first appearance in NY’s Flatiron District on 9/7, followed by a stop at the High Line on 9/8, and visits to Brooklyn on 9/9 and 9/10. Sam Talbot and his crew will be serving up signature dishes including a fried catfish slider with crispy pickles and blackened catfish tacos with charred tomato vinaigrette. Branded napkins, food containers, cups and more bearing tongue-in-cheek messaging like “Bottoms Up, Bottom Feeders Down” and “Catfish Just Got Served” will also add to the fun.
“When Bumble showed us this innovative way they are dealing with catfish, we started using the word “frying” a lot, and then we couldn’t stop thinking that fried catfish is really tasty,” said Chief Creative Officer Rob Baird. “So we’re celebrating the eventual demise of all the misleading bottom-feeders out there with something everyone can enjoy.”
If deriding and deep frying the fakes wasn’t enough, they’ll also be handing out great Bumble merch to people with verified profiles. Branded tackle boxes filled with Bumble anti-catfishing swag are also being sent to media and influencers throughout New York as a fun way to educate them on Bumble Photo Verification.
Here’s to putting a stop to catfishing!