Tech Savvy: My time on Tinder
The dating game has come a long way since the time of passing secretive notes in class or throwing pebbles at a paramour's bedroom window. The rise of the mobile phone dating app made it easier and faster to find people around you who are also sw...
The dating game has come a long way since the time of passing secretive notes in class or throwing pebbles at a paramour's bedroom window.
The rise of the mobile phone dating app made it easier and faster to find people around you who are also swimming in the dating pool. Although a number of different apps are prevalent, the most ubiquitous is called Tinder.
I've been on Tinder for at least three years now. While my use of the app initially started as a half joke, I've since come to rely on it for dating. Being a reporter is a busy life-not a lot of time to romance the old-fashioned way.
You can only use Tinder if you have a smartphone that can connect to the internet, but since most people see such phones as essential, it's not a roadblock to the app's popularity.
Tinder is set up by importing your Facebook profile; using the same profile photos, job/education titles, and interests that you put on Facebook. Lucky for me, Tinder lets you choose which Facebook photos cross over, so I can edit out certain pictures that were funny otherwise, but not necessarily flattering if I want to sell people on the idea I'm physically attractive.
Using the GPS device in your phone, Tinder shows you the profiles of people within a certain distance radius of you at the given moment. You can set it from 1 to 100 miles (or even kilometers if you prefer).
As each person's profile picture and name comes up, you can swipe to indicate whether you like them or not- left for no, right for yes. If both people see each other's profiles and "like" each other, then that creates a match, and the love birds can start talking to each other.
On a serious note, I've often seen "no hookups" stated plainly in women's bio information. This is a disquieting footprint of the sexual propositions and unsolicited comments women are subjected to, and that any woman should be forewarned of before starting the app.
However, there are a number of safeguards built into the system that serve to protect women from aggressive "bros." For one, the interaction doesn't start until both people have "liked" each other. If someone decides to unmatch the other person, they can no longer message each other. Although the Tinder profiles are imported from one's Facebook profile, there is no actual link to the Facebook profile and you can't see people's last names.
Finally, you can't send people photos directly-avoiding the lewd photos guys might send otherwise.
On the whole, though, I've found Tinder to be a fascinating way to experience what the rest of humanity has to offer. The age settings range from 18 to 55 and over depending on what you specify, so you get a diverse range of possible matches. You can meet people you otherwise may have never encountered, and make fun memories you otherwise would never have experienced.