Facebook dives into the online dating pool

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Attention Facebook users-if you want to change your status from "single" to "in a relationship..." look no further than Facebook itself. (KGO-TV)

Attention Facebook users-if you want to change your status from "single" to "in a relationship..." look no further than Facebook itself.

At the annual developer conference, Mark Zuckerberg announced Facebook will be adding a dating service to its app.

Zuckerberg said it will be optional. Also, your friends won't see your dating profile and Facebook will not match you with your friends.

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"The bottom line is we want Facebook to be somewhere where you can start meaningful relationships," said Zuckerberg.

A cybersecurity expert at San Jose State University is not surprised Facebook is diving into online dating.

In fact, he said the social media giant is simply getting back to its roots.

"Facebook started as a dating website in 2003 with FaceMash," said Ahmed Banafa.

VIDEO: Mark Zuckerberg gives keynote at F8 Conference
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Thousands of people are attending Facebook's F8 Developer Conference in San Jose.


Banafa added that Facebook will likely "Amazon" other dating apps.

"They take an existing app and they improve it, make it much better. They have the base, you talk about 2.1 billion users. So, they can experiment with that one and they have the resources, they have the cash and they have the talents to do that," said Banafa.

Dating apps, and their investors, were quick to react to the announcement.

Shares of Match.com and Tinder saw double-digit drops.

The CEO of IAC, the majority owner of Match, issued a snarky statement that reads: "Come on in. The water's warm. Their product could be great for US/Russia relationships."

Other apps were more welcoming.

In reference to the Cambridge Analytic scandal, Zuckerberg said they designed the dating app with privacy and safety in mind from the beginning.

Keep reading for full statements from Match Group, Hinge, Coffee Meets Bagel, and Grindr.

Statement from Joey Levin, CEO, IAC: "Come on in. The water's warm. Their product could be great for US/Russia relationships."

Statement from Mandy Ginsberg, CEO, Match Group: "We're flattered that Facebook is coming into our space - and sees the global opportunity that we do - as Tinder continues to skyrocket. We're surprised at the timing given the amount of personal and sensitive data that comes with this territory. Regardless, we're going to continue to delight our users through product innovation and relentless focus on relationship success. We understand this category better than anyone. Facebook's entry will only be invigorating to all of us."

Statement from Hinge: "Facebook could have used swiping in its attempt to enter the dating space, but instead they clearly drew inspiration from Hinge. It validates our anti-swipe, pro-dating movement, which we'll continue to lead through exciting innovations that connect our members for outstanding first dates. We're happy to see that our movement to create meaningful connections, not games or hookups, is catching on."

Statement from Coffee Meets Bagel: "The fact that a company as big as Facebook is jumping into dating speaks to the growing demand and the market opportunity of this space. There is a real need for helping singles experience authentic connections, a mission that Coffee Meets Bagel has always been committed. We are happy to see Facebook acknowledging the need to create meaningful relationships beyond hookups, as the online dating culture definitely needs to shift away from quantity vs. quality interactions."

Statement from Wei Zhou, Executive Vice Chairman of Grindr: "We applaud Facebook's move into the dating space, however, we are unsure if the platform truly understands the needs of the LGBTQ community particularly in areas of the world where LGBTQ people face tremendous amounts of violence. We are happy to be a resource for Facebook as they enter a space we've existed in for almost a decade."

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