Why the C.E.O. Behind Match.com and Tinder Took a Stand on the Texas Abortion Law
Enlarge this image toggle caption Nick Wagner/AP Nick Wagner/AP
It’s a story of two Silicon Valley executives who both tried to help women get an abortion but also chose to fight Texas’ new “heartbeat” abortion law.
On paper, it seems like a simple decision: Don’t help women who are seeking an abortion, or help the women?
It was a choice — and a very controversial one. The two executives who made it: Michael Levitt, CEO of Match.com, and Mike Jones of the social-networking site Tinder.com.
Both of them had personal reasons to take a stand on abortion rights and oppose the Texas law.
In a joint statement in May, Match and Tinder said they disagreed with the bill, and that they both thought “its intent is to undermine access to reproductive health services, especially in Texas.”
It was a major blow to Texas Republicans, who passed similar bans in nine other states last year.
Enlarge this image toggle caption Steve Pope/Getty Images Steve Pope/Getty Images
The two executives faced a different set of circumstances, however. While Levitt was fired as CEO for firing an employee for expressing his opposition to abortion, Jones was made CEO by Match on the day the Texas law was passed.
In the months leading up to the vote, Jones — like Levitt — had been pushing back against the Texas law on blogs and with his own employees — even before he had even heard any more details.
“I’ve been reading this story and it just really hits home. This is the story of America, and how it stands against prejudice,” Jones told the New York Times. “I’d really like the story to be about how I’m making the world a better place and making the world a more attractive place, but instead the story is about women being discriminated against and treated unfairly.”
Jones told the Times that he didn’t want to leave his job as CEO. He also said he didn’t think that he did anything wrong as an executive and he wasn’t “an anti-abortion crusader.”
Jones, the Times noted, has “been vocal in his support of pro-choice causes, in his support of same-sex marriage, and in