“Ahh, Tinder! The Crystal Meth of Online Dating.”
Love. Partner. Relationship – These words conjure up images of joy and the sweet promise of everlasting happiness. Which sparks the inevitable question. How do we find that elusive person who can add to our being? Someone who we can share our lives with.
Chances are that you can find that person in a place as mundane as a grocery store or at a upscale dance club or maybe while riding the bus. Cupid must really like you, if you manage to find him/her that way.
However for most of the populace it isn’t so. The easiest way for them would be to install a dating app – either for a hookup, random sex or search for an ideal partner. Dreamers among them may fantasize of landing a relationship and even end up at the altar taking sacred vows.
It all sounds so mushy and sweet having this glimmer of hope. For most of us a relationship is that heady feeling that makes us abandon all reason. We feel alive, content and fulfilled.
What if going on an app works out? What if you hit the jackpot?
What if you meet someone who isn’t a freak, who won’t cut you up into little pieces, who will be nice, and also have refined tastes for music and wine.
Woah Woah. Hold on, folks! It isn’t that easy as it seems.
If dating apps gave us love at such short notice, wouldn’t the world be a happier place with everyone glowing with the radiance of love?
Despite a multitude of options available to find love why are most people still single?
Studies and research have concluded that a majority of people are single and do not find what they want in an app. In fact the number of singles have continued to increase.
E.g. A study in the UK states that the number of single people has risen by 31% in the past 15 years.
Tinder especially is full of people holding out for a fairytale, all the while stepping over the frogs waiting to be kissed.
I took time to do my research on the effectiveness of dating apps.
I base this article on:
- Going through hundreds of reviews on Playstore
- Trying out the app myself
- Articles on Tinder
and came up with two major findings.
- Dating apps have a clever mechanism where their algorithm is tuned to make your stay on the app for as long as possible.
- Your online behavior is impeding your chances of meeting someone.
As part 1 of this article, I will provide you insights on the first point from which you can draw your own conclusion.
Tinder | More Behind the Cutesy
A study found that a pigeon pecked at a button an indefinite number of times in an attempt to release food pellets. Even though each peck was not guaranteed to produce the pellet, it still continued pecking at it in anticipation.
This is the exact way Tinder works. Our swiping behavior is reinforced as we continue swiping – when we don’t know when our next reward will come, if at all. The design and marketing of Tinder further encourage a cold, odds-based approach to love.
Why don’t all desirable/popular profiles (most swiped right, probable great matches) appear at the beginning? – Wouldn’t it be more effective to bring potential matches together more quickly?
If 10 people have liked User X, why don’t all those 10 people be displayed in succession to User X at the beginning of his swipe actions?
The app is designed like a game! If the above happened it would be so very predictable. Therefore it leaves you eagerly awaiting another match. It also prevents attractive and liked profiles from running out too soon.
Superficial & the Allure of Sex
In today’s world, people yearn for a deeper connection but the speed of superficiality of modern dating can work against that.
Over the years Tinder has subconsciously shaped the mentality of people towards a random fling culture rather than meaningful long-term relationships. There is a sweet rush of adrenaline when the promise of sex is just a swipe away.
Customers engaging in flings and sex keep paying monthly subscription fees, while those who look for the long term are more likely to delete their account.
The ease of the swipe is a hindrance to actually deciding on someone to meet up with.
One is always thinking there is someone better on the next swipe. It could also be that after after one ‘okay’ date you might get straight back to Tinder without giving that date a second chance.
Free Service any Good?
Its free service restricts the number of likes a user can give out each day without paying for more. Even if they use it in limits, it still does not create more matches or show them desired profiles.
Out of Tinder’s 57 million subscribers, 4.3 million of them are paid. But did Tinder create a platform for stable, happy, and long-lasting relationships for them?
At the Crux – Tinder Algorithm
In pairing up their users, its proprietary algorithm is ostensibly cutting-edge. But if improvements to the system lead to more customers finding long-term love matches (and therefore abandoning the service), why should they offer the most advanced technology?
Imagine a non-dating app like grocery or food delivery that is effective and has great performance. Such an app would yield customer loyalty and reward the user the more they use it.
On the other hand, if a dating app delivers great performance, the user would leave the app as it has served his/her purpose. This means a loss of a customer.
Isn’t it a terrifying thought that maybe just maybe Tinder wants you to be single?
Tinder wants you to be satisfied using it, but it doesn’t want you to be too satisfied. Because if you were, then you wouldn’t pay for it. Would you?
Is Tinder really interested in matching you? Wont they be losing clients if you found your perfect match?
Love can be found in the most mysterious of places and under inexplicable circumstances. Go ahead. Indulge in swiping to your heart’s content. But also pay attention to your surroundings and social life beyond the app. Be flexible in your desires. Your partner must be just around the corner or the next swipe.
Read Part 2 of this article here – Is Tinder deliberately keeping you single or are you?