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Bumble swipes back at Tinder owner Match in patent spat

The 'Tinder' app logo is seen amongst other dating apps on a mobile phone screen on November 24, 2016 in London, England. F Image copyright Getty Images

Dating app Bumble has swiped back at rival Match Group after Match filed a lawsuit accusing Bumble of infringing on its intellectual property.

Bumble described the lawsuit as "attempted scare tactics" in a statement on its website and in advertisements published in US newspapers.

Match Group is the parent company of Tinder and other dating apps.

It has accused Bumble of mimicking Tinder's design and functions.

Tinder launched in 2012, gaining traction as users could swipe left or right on people's pictures to indicate interest. If both people swipe right, Tinder presents them with a match.

Bumble, which was founded by former Tinder executives in 2014, works similarly, except that women must be the ones to initiate conversation after the app produces a match.

In a lawsuit filed in federal court in Texas, Match Group says Bumble sought to "build a business entirely on a Tinder-clone, distinguished only by Bumble's women-talk-first marketing strategy".

It cites patents related to Tinder's designs and matching process and argues that swiping is a term synonymous with Tinder.

Bumble, which is based in Austin and claims almost 30 million users, has not formally responded to the lawsuit. Match reportedly tried to buy Bumble last year.

In the ad the firm wrote: "We swipe left on your multiple attempts to buy us, copy us, and, now, to intimidate us."

It continued: "We'll never be yours."

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