Is Tinder To Blame For The Bleak And Depressing World Of Online Dating?

Vanity Fair featured a glimpse into the online dating world with a click-worthy title: “Tinder and the Dawn of the Dating Apocalypse.” Written by Nancy Jo Sales, it gives readers a bleak and depressing look at the current online dating culture through the eyes of young adults.

That feature was enough to make Tinder to go on a mini Twitter rant. The dating company said that their app has generated many long-term relationships and marriages. Tinder then retracted its statements and realized that it overreacted.

In the article, Sales interviewed “more than 50 young women in New York, Indiana, and Delaware, aged 19 to 29.” Tinder currently has 50 million monthly users, which means it was only based on a select group of people.

According to the article, traditional dating has been replaced by the “hookup culture,” which is another meaning for casual sex. Tinder is one of the many dating apps mentioned in the article. Tinder is a dating app that allows users to find other attractive users in their area. If you like someone based on their looks and profile, you swipe right. If you don’t, then you swipe left. When you have come across a mutual match, the app allows you to message that user.

Some would say that Tinder and other dating apps are as easy as ordering pizza. In the article, Dan, Alex, and Marty compare setting up Tinder dates to making food orders.

“It’s like ordering Seamless (referring to an online food-delivery service), but you’re ordering a person.”

Are dating apps like Tinder responsible for the “hookup culture,” though? Hooking up is not a new thing. In the 90s, it had more to do with college students experimenting rather than young established adults having online flings. Now, it seems like anyone can hook up, thanks to social media and the internet. It’s just the way that people meet and hook up that has changed.

Comedian Aziz Ansari previously defended Tinder in his book, Modern Romance. He wrote that hooking up these days “isn’t so different from what our grandparents did.”

The annual national General Social Survey found that the years between 1972 and 2012, there was an increase in sexual partners per person. The rates “increased steadily between the G.I.s and 1960s-born Gen X’ers.”

One of the authors of the study, San Diego State University professor Jean Twenge, said that hookup culture is not something that was created overnight.

“There was certainly a lot of promiscuity going on in the 1970s as well. You would get these same stories if you went around and asked people about dating back then. They would have just met the people they were hooking up with at the nightclub instead of on Tinder.”

Online dating is changing the way that people meet and sometimes have sex. It’s also changing the dynamics of relationships. A growing number of millennials are still living at home with their parents. They don’t feel independent enough to jump into a relationship. So they opt to have as many flings and casual encounters as possible.

Dating apps like Tinder makes it easy for people to meet, hook up, and go their separate ways. Even other dating sites, like OkCupid, has incorporated the “left swipe, right swipe” feature into its own app, for those who aren’t looking for a long-term thing.

There are still depressing statistics when it comes to online dating. As previously reported via the Press Democrat, only 5 percent of Americans are in a long-term relationship or married to the person they met online, while 11 percent have been with that person for 10 years or less.

Tinder may not be to blame for the “hookup culture” or the “dating apocalypse,” but it’s sure bearing the brunt of the backlash. The company can’t help the fact that it’s one of the most popular dating apps on the market, but it only accounts for a small part of the market. It looks like the online dating world is doing just fine without Tinder.

The online dating industry is worth $2.4 billion in 2015. Dating sites attract 30 million users per month, while mobile dating apps only account for 26 percent of that market.

What are your thoughts on Tinder? Do you think it’s perpetuating the “hookup culture”? Or, do you think people can find long-term relationships on dating apps? Share your thoughts below in the comments section.

[Image: photostock]