The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) pulled the plug on five dating and live streaming apps, citing negative effects from content deemed immoral and urging greater adherence to laws.

User access to Tinder, Grindr, Tagged, Skout and SayHi was blocked yesterday (1 September), the PTA said in a statement.

It noted the ban came after the companies failed to respond to calls “to moderate live streaming content” in line with Pakistani law in a timely fashion, and explained it was concerned about the “negative effects of immoral/indecent content streaming” through the apps.

Dating apps appear to be less popular in Pakistan than other countries, with Appfigures data showing Tinder was downloaded 159,500 times in the country from the start of the year to end-August, compared with 9.5 million in the US.

In July, the PTA issued a warning about “immoral, obscene and vulgar content” on social media app TikTok, expressing concern it was having an “extremely negative” effect on “society in general and youth in particular”.