The Olympic Village is often rumored to be a hotbed for other types of medal-winning physical feats. However, with Russia’s discriminatory laws firmly in place this year, it may seem that gay Olympians and spectators aren’t getting quite as lucky in the sheets.
But never question the resolve of the human sex drive. Same-sex matches in Sochi are currently at an all-time high for Down, a sex-positive app for safe, anonymous hook ups.
According to Matt Slusarenko, Down’s VP of Marketing, the app is seeing a record-breaking number of same-sex matches at Sochi. Usually same-sex matches make up about 30 percent of all hook ups on Down. At Sochi, that number is up to almost half, 45 percent.
“In light of the clear institutionalized homophobia in Russia, it makes sense that LGBT people would be hesitant to associate themselves with Scruff or Grindr,” Slusarenko said, alluding to fear that gay-specific apps might lure bigoted troublemakers looking to target LGBTs in Sochi.
“Down is completely anonymous, a user doesn’t know who else is using the app until they find a match, creating a much more discreet experience,” Slusarenko said.
Discretion seems to be the keyword for LGBT life in Russia. It’s not that gay bars don’t exist, in fact they are relatively vibrant given the dire circumstances, but they have to operate in secret. Gay sex follows a similar protocol.
Additionally, even though geo-targeting plays a role, Down never reveals exact coordinates or how many feet away someone is. Each profile is also tied to a Facebook profile, lowering the chances of being “catfished.”
So if you’re currently in Sochi and looking to cyber cruise for a chance to get down with an Olympian, check out Down.
Oscar Raymundo is the creator of Confessions of a Boy Toy.