Every year that passes, it seems a larger and larger percentage of the population is looking to avoid talking on the phone as much as possible. The explosive popularity of text messages a decade ago was apparently just the beginning. Services like Grub Hub and Uber have become darlings of the sharing economy based on the ability of their service to purchase goods and services via a smart phone without having to speak or even type to any direct person.
Enter Tinder, which takes the zero direct communication paradigm of securing goods and services to the dating/romance aspect of the human experience for those affluent enough to afford a smart phone and data package. You know you’re talking to an old person if they don’t know what Tinder is and/or don’t understand how to use it. Is it real? Is it a game? Yes and kinda are the answers to those questions.
What is Tinder? It is truly the first online dating service made for the smart phone app era of technology users/consumers. Tinder technically has a website which is just an ad/reminder to download the application. If you have a smart phone and are single, there is no reason to not utilize Tinder, unless you don’t have a Facebook account. A Facebook account is necessary to set up a Tinder profile. This is where the service carved its niche. Tinder farms the aspects of matching out to Facebook. People are matched based on Facebook likes (music, movies, tv shows, fan pages, etc) and/or mutual friends. People can be matched without these commonalities, Facebook is used as a defacto identity verification service.
What is Tinder’s value?
The shallow joke is easy, instant access to a one night stand. Tinder has made its name on facilitating hook ups. The New York Times has written multiple articles on Tinder writing under the assumption the app is strictly or at least predominately THE hook up dating app. Naturally the college kids love them some Tinder.
But in all seriousness, Tinder provides great value to single people. How? It provides instant evidence you are not alone. Whether young or old, in a city or suburb, Tinder will pull up dozens of single people near you. Tinder is empirical proof that there are indeed plenty of fish in the sea.
Tinder is not just for young people who are considering classically or stereotypically attractive. The hook up only aspect of the app has already been faded for almost a full year. Asking if people hook up using Tinder is like asking if the one night stand still exists. Consenting adults will do whatever consenting adults want to do when they are single and attracted to someone they have recently met and have begun spending time with.
Tinder’s purpose is to show you have options. That even in far off suburbs there are lots of single people around you and in cities there are even more. People who don’t like the bar/club scene have a free option of meeting people at their fingertips. People who don’t use gyms, grocery stores, yoga studios, and college campuses at meet markets have a free option to meet people they know are single and have been independently verified to be interested in them. Tinder’s value is in removing the question in one’s head “I wonder if he/she is interested in me or not”. If they’re not, nothing happens, if they are, you’re matched up and you both receive notifications on your phones.
It seems more and more people are becoming increasingly afraid of direct communication and rejection. Tinder kills both of those birds with one app. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to try to pay off a zoo employee to let me take a selfie with a tiger.