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Tinder’s Secret ‘Desirability Algorithm’ Is Not Just About The Swipe

Tinder is a popular location-based dating app that was launched in 2012. Since then, the app has grown in popularity, and according to CEO Sean Rad, on Tinder it’s about more than the swipe.

CNET reports that Rad explains the desirability algorithm that helps users make date suggestions. While users want other users to swipe them, Rad says there is more to it than that.

“It’s not just how many people swipe right on you. It’s very complicated. It took us two and a half months just to build the algorithm because a lot of factors go into it.”

Chris Dumler, the data analyst for Tinder, explains further.

“Every swipe is in a way casting a vote: I find this person more desirable than this person, whatever motivated you to swipe right. It might be because of attractiveness, or it might because they had a really good profile.”

When it comes to desirability, Elite Daily reports that wearing specific colors will increase a user’s chances of getting a date on Tinder. Apparently, most of the users on Tinder tend to wear neutral colors, so those who wear brighter colors will stand out more, as explained by Dr. Jess Carbino.

“Clothing provides users an opportunity to stand out from the crowd. Given that the vast majority of Tinder users are wearing neutral colors, individuals who want to make a splash and stand out should wear a vibrant color.”

Dr. Carbino suggests that users look to the birds of nature and take their lead when it comes to adding color to their persona.

Mashable is even working the Tinder fashion on Twitter, which was taken out of context by some.

As for Sean Rad, he has been struggling with response to headlines that have announced Match Group, Tinder’s parent company, is going public. Fast Company reports that Rad has had to respond to loads of people congratulating him because they think Tinder is going public.

“People think Tinder went public and I’m a billionaire. Add it to the long list of s**t that’s misunderstood about me.”

According to Rad, even though Match Group is the majority shareholder for Tinder, what Match Group does doesn’t really have an impact on Tinder. CEO of Match Group, George Blatt, is on the board of Tinder, as well as its executive chairman. His take on Tinder is low key.

“Sean has equity in Tinder. His ability to realize value is through the performance of Tinder… that’s the way we incentivize the employees there. There are no plans to spin it out. The way the arrangements work is that they get guaranteed liquidity through a number of mechanisms regardless, but there’s certainly the possibility of doing [spinning Tinder out] if it reached that scale and that sort of level of independence in the same way that Match [has done], meaning Match had an equity system that provided employees liquidity at Match’s valuation over time.”

But the future of Tinder could be questionable. TNW News reports that Tinder, along with Grindr (a comparable app), has had an increase in the number of crimes linked with it in England and Wales. In 2013, there were only 55 reported crimes associated with Tinder and Grindr. However, the number of crimes went up to 204 in 2014 and 412 in 2015.

It seems that apps like Tinder are much more open to criminal activity, including rape and the sexual exploitation of children, than other types of online dating sites. It is uncertain if this rise in crime associated with location-based dating apps will diminish their popularity and use. Only time will tell.

[Photo by tanuha2001/Shutterstock]

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