“I would walk a thousand miles on glass shards through thorn bushes with a snapping turtle latched onto my balls and a bees nest on my head just to drink out of the same glass as you.”
“Damn girl, you must be Stanley Yelnats and I must be Hector Zeroni ‘cause I wanna help you with your hole.”
“Damn girl, are you a bird feeder? Because you’re making me want to spread my seed all over you.”
Believe it or not, these are actually three different messages I have received from three different guys on Tinder in the last 24 hours. Unfortunately, I can’t even make these outrageous pickup lines up. For some reason, the individuals who sent me these thought that their words were going to charm me; however, I unmatched myself with the hornballs faster than you could possibly imagine.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Tinder, allow me to fill you in. This phone application uses both your Facebook account and geographical location to match you up with people in your area. You are then presented with an image of a boy or girl (which ever your preference may be) along with their name, age, and brief bio. Since Tinder pulls its information solely from your Facebook account, you are able to see if you have any mutual friends with this potential interest. After you view all of this, you have a decision to make. You can either swipe left, which means you do not want to talk to them. Or, you can swipe right and if they mutually swiped right, you will be notified that this person is indeed a ‘match.’
I actually downloaded Tinder this past Thanksgiving. I was at a local bar the night prior with my friends from high school and of course my ex-boyfriend walks through the door with the girl who he cheated on me with. Granted I am over him and the wasted five and a half years of my life that I will never get back, but it was the fact that he is publicly moved on and happy while I’m walking around double fisting two cranberry and vodkas. When I saw the two of them together, I began reminiscing on the past. This led me to realize just how lonely and single I am. It may seem pathetic, but I attempted to use Tinder as an escape. I tried to find something that would fill that void and emptiness inside of me. This may come as a shock, but it didn’t work.
A Pew Research study conducted found that 11 percent of Internet users, and 38 percent of those who are currently ‘single and looking’ for a partner, say they have used mobile dating apps. According to Marckens Pierre, the creator of the popular relationship blog, Seriously Maybe, Tinder is not the way to go about finding love. “For the amount of time someone spends on Tinder, they can be out in the real world, having face-to-face conversations and getting to know people the old fashioned way.” Although Pierre has never used Tinder before, he stresses that he has had plenty of friends who were on it during his college days and not once did he see a positive outcome. He finds it to be more of a lazy dating app than an easy one. Pierre wants people of our generation to realize that it is okay to look away from their phones every now and then. “Making eye contact with another person will not kill you,” he adds.
21-year-old Paige Smith, a student at The University of the Arts, used Tinder for only a week last summer before she deleted the application and never looked back. “If their main photo was of two guys, the actual guy was ALWAYS the less cute one and if I’m being perfectly honest, I got tired of that constantly happening.” Smith laughs. “Seriously though, Tinder isn’t the way you’re going to find your Prince Charming. A one night stand? Maybe. But, if you’re looking to be swept off of your feet, then you are better off living vicariously through a fairytale or an overrated romantic comedy.”
What I have gained from Tinder is that it completely dehumanizes us. An article from JamesMSama couldn’t have said it any better. “We need to get back out into the world. To interact with each other. To absorb someone’s entire existence and really get to know them. Mannerisms, voice, body language, and a million other factors can make somebody more (or less) attractive than a photo would suggest.” This dating application gives individuals an excuse to be shallow. We are judging someone from their online profile, which ultimately may not even be their true identity. I am currently in the process of removing my Tinder account off of my phone. I don’t want to get comfortable creating a digital connection with someone instead of a physical one— even though I had zero luck on Tinder and still am as equally single as I was when I first joined a few weeks ago.
If there’s anything to take away from this, it’s that we can’t use Tinder as a replacement from real life scenarios. Once you ‘left-swipe’ someone, that’s it. Say you were to walk into a bar and someone asks to buy you a drink, but you politely decline. Do they automatically vanish from the bar after that? Of course not. Plus, there’s always that chance that you may possibly change your mind. Through the media, you can only scratch the surface of someone’s personality. This is an ethic that we are simply unable to stray away from, no matter how much technology floods our generation. So, instead of deleting face-to-face interaction from your life, think about deleting Tinder instead.
Check out the audio interview below, where four local college students share their own, unique experiences with the dating app and their thoughts on just how effective Tinder has been for them.