Disclaimer: This post is written from a perspective of a 35 year old single guy. Happy to get a woman’s take on this. It’s a rather singular take from a guy using dating apps, and in no way is this a generalization for all the men & women out there.
These past couple of months, I’ve used almost all the dating apps out there – both foreign and domestic. There is no denying that Tinder has changed the game of mating, since the advent of marriages itself. In just about 60 seconds, we can sign up with Facebook, put up a decent profile picture, and go about swiping people off. Takes me back to college days – where we’d spend a a couple of hours on hotornot.com to see how people rank. I’d put up my pictures too, and think I had a score of 7.0. Wasn’t too bad, but with the sophisticated photographic filters available today, i could have pushed the score to 8.5. Easy!
A year ago Vanity Fair published ‘Dawn of the Dating Apocalypse,’ an expose on swiping apps, and the hookup culture they foster. Through a series of interviews with young professionals across the United States, the author paints a picture of these apps having killed dating, relationships and romance, replacing them with objectifying games and on-demand sex where everyone feels dehumanized, disconnected and dejected.
So has it? Killed Romance? Love? Serendipity?
One, there is absolutely no effort on your part, or mine, to put up that profile picture. In about 60 seconds, i can hit the slot machines, hoping for spades! And that hope, which is an extremely powerful word, is what drives us to spend an average of 90 minutes daily on Tinder. 90 minutes! That’s longer than what people spend on Facebook each day. And because it’s so easy to play the game, we have pretty much everybody and their dog on Tinder, swiping away. I really think that 50% of the user base on Tinder is there just for the kicks, with very limited intention of actually meeting anybody.
Two, as a guy, If i am swiping you purely based on the pictures you put up, then really, if you’re asking the guys if they’re in there for hook-ups seems really strange to me. We have swiped right on you, based on how you look. Please do not ask me what I am looking for. And I think this leads to a major disconnect between men & women. Men are geared to be players (globally). But even the players are looking for love. Nobody wants to die alone. We just don’t want to put all the cards on the table even before we’ve met. We want to get down on our knees when the time is right. You will know us, by how we look at you. To this end, I do think that women are gifted with a strong instinct. As somebody once said, I’d rather trust a woman’s instinct, than a man’s reason. So use that ladies, and don’t ask the guys too many questions.
Three, guys just have it bad in this country. I get a few mutual likes on this darn thing. Women seem to control the keys to the dating apps, and have a choice of which guy they will respond to. The reality? Quite the opposite! Statistically for every two ‘single good’ women out there, there is only one ‘single good’ guy. This is global phenomena (among the 30+ crowd). And really, if you’re a woman who’s getting a lot of likes on Tinder, then you’ve put up a killer profile picture.
Which brings to a major issue with Tinder. I know for a fact, that 80% of the people on Tinder use some fancy instagram filters and somehow appear more attractive that what they actually look like in real life. This is just wrong. You’re killing it for the other 20%, because most of the us are just swiping right on the fake-but-look-good pictures.
Four, not that I’m all out of luck. I did get quite a few mutual likes. One was very upfront (based in Gurgaon i think), who asked me – so what are you looking for? Without waiting for a response from me, she’s like I’m in this for marriage, and no interest in hooking up. Ok then! That killed the moment. Guys (globally) get really creeped out if you corner them with the M word. I mean we just matched, how about we meet first? Now granted, she seemed to come from a conservative background, but where is the romance love?
Which is the issue with the dating apps. Because it’s free (with no effort on your part), we have no idea what the other person is in for. People have to put some cash/commitment on the table which weeds out the ones who aren’t serious about meeting people. There is no other way around this, and something we’ve maintained for a while now.
Five, of the 20 odd women i matched with on the dating apps, moving to a meeting offline is so goddamn hard. I really have no patience in chatting up online. What am i going with here? I’m pretty much chatting with you based on the profile picture you put up. I say they shouldn’t even allow people to chat up after they match. Just meet. Really. Get over it! But most of matches just die out online. The meet never happens. We’ve overanalyzed everything before we have actually met and that’s pretty much killed it for me.
The other day I was at a coffee shop. There was this girl sitting next to me, and i could swear that she was on one of the dating apps (they all start to look the same with the endless swiping). It didn’t really occur to me after she actually left. But what if I had approached her and said hey, wanna have coffee together? With the dating apps, most of us have forgotten how to approach other people in real life. I was attracted to her, and my gut feeling was, that she was waiting for me to say something. Well kiddo – hope we meet again on Tinder (well that won’t happen, cause I did swipe right on you, and you never did reciprocate).
Using the dating apps for the past couple of months, I’ve been more lonely than before. I’m just swiping right (if you’re pretty) and investing less than half a second on each profile. I couldn’t care less about actually going through your profile. If we match, maybe I look at you a bit closer. And if we do match, let’s just hope our stars are aligned, and we actually meet. But chances are, we both have left swiped each other already.
Founder, A World Alike
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