Facebook Adds Same-Sex Relationship Statuses

"People want to go online and check out their friends, so why not build a website that offers that?," declared Jessie Eisenberg as Mark Zuckerberg in 2010's The Social Network. "Friends, pictures, profiles, whatever you can visit, browse around, maybe it's someone you just met at a party. Eduardo, I'm not talking about a dating site, I'm talking about taking the entire social experience of college and putting it online."

But since its inception, Facebook has never totally reflected the complex nature of modern relationships, especially those with dubious legal status. On Thursday, Facebook introduced its latest update to the website's romantic options, which now include "in a civil union" and "in a domestic partnership."

Picture 34.png

The inclusion of legal relationship titles is being lauded by LGBT groups:

The choices used to only be "single," "in a relationship," "engaged," "married," "separated," "in an open relationship," "it's complicated," "widowed" and "divorced."

Facebook has more than 600 million active users globally and human-rights groups hailed the move as a huge step forward for the greater equality and understanding of same sex unions.

"I think it's important to be able to recognize and describe the legal status of same sex couples," said Marriage Equality media director Mollie McKay.

"It's good visibility and good to show everyone on Facebook that same-sex couples exist, and are denied the status of marriage."

"Today, Facebook sent a clear message in support of gay and lesbian couples to users across the globe," said Jarrett Barrios, president of the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation.

"By acknowledging the relationships of countless loving and committed same-sex couples in the U.S. and abroad, Facebook has set a new standard of inclusion for social media."

Read the full story at the New York Daily News

Presented by

Jared Keller is a journalist based in New York. He has written for Bloomberg Businessweek, Pacific Standard, and Al Jazeera America, and is a former associate editor for The Atlantic.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

A Stop-Motion Tour of New York City

A filmmaker animated hundreds of still photographs to create this Big Apple flip book

Video

The Absurd Psychology of Restaurant Menus

Would people eat healthier if celery was called "cool celery?"

Video

This Japanese Inn Has Been Open For 1,300 Years

It's one of the oldest family businesses in the world.

Video

What Happens Inside a Dying Mind?

Science cannot fully explain near-death experiences.

More in Technology

Just In