Digital dating has become socially acceptable and widely-diversified, at least in how many platforms are up-and-coming. As a single lady in Boston, I decided to brush off my skepticism and give two applications a try, Tinder and Hinge. Hey, maybe I’d even meet the next guy for my family to rip apart.
A couple of months ago, a male buddy of mine joined Tinder. I questioned his sexuality because the first thing that popped into my mind was “Grinder,” the application designed for male-male hook ups. But no, Tinder is for everyone. This application has taken the concept of “hot or not” and turned it into a way to find your superficial significant other within a designated mile radius. Tinder’s CEO Sean Rand says it’s an app designed to “facilitate a connection between those around you.” Indeed curious about “those around me,” I gave it a whack and allowed the application to access my Facebook profile to market myself to the Tinder pool.
If you thought Angry Birds was addictive, you haven’t lived until you’ve Tindered. This shit is like Christmas, the gifts never end! Guy after guy after guy was right at my fingertips, waiting to be liked or disliked. Sure, the amount of creepy selfie shots from the bathroom outweighs the men I liked, but I certainly can’t complain about the quantity. The kicker is when you get a match. The awkward chat they invite both users into reminds me of AIM circa 2001; so anonymous yet such freedom to be a complete weirdo. And of course, most of my matches were that weird, cue Mr. “Bonjour, my petite croissant” (note to guys: This line does not make a woman horny, just hungry). Or how about the guy who I actually met up with that was two steps away from not being allowed to ride the roller coaster due to height limitations with a lazy eye to boot? Pictures lie.
After my addiction to Tinder wore off, I played Russian roulette with the application named Hinge. This app also uses your Facebook to develop a social profile, but it also goes through your friend list to present matches that are only second- or third-degree connections, taking the middleman out of the friend introduction. This allows you to stalk the crap out of the person because you know the same people. Creator Justin Mcleod promotes the app’s intention of compatibility saying, “Hinge uses a matching algorithm to intelligently show people mates they’re likely to be compatible with.” This app is more geared toward making actual connections.
Now, unlike Tinder, you only get served a certain amount of potential matches each day. This app is on the low-dosage program. So, each day instead of scanning through tons of people, I was served a small, healthy serving of man meat. Tinder may have quantity, but Hinge might have quality. Generally, I found that my potentials were a bit more attractive and all-around appealing (job titles, interests, and so on). One gentleman went to Harvard and is currently a partner of a digital video start-up. Cha-ching … can we say jackpot? Nope. He was extremely well-behaved and didn’t refer to me as any type of French pastry, but I compared him to a piece of toast – dry, baby, dry. Someone else’s cup of tea, I suppose.
Each application definitely has its ups and downs. Tinder is more anonymous, which allows you to be a bit naughty, if you so choose (don’t lie, you’ve done it). And Hinge has the ability to bite you in the ass due to your friend connections, revealing that time you danced on a bar and just happened to forget to wear underwear. But Hinge does present more info on each person with job titles, last name initial, and interests, unlike Tinder which just includes a photo, name, and age. And like I said, pictures can lie like a rug. Both apps cleverly include the chat feature which does make for some interesting pick-up lines — or a stand-off to see who attempts to make contact first.
One of the last Hinge dates I went on had an excellent point: Sites like match.com are for marrying, Hinge is for dating, and Tinder is for touching inappropriately. Whatever you might be looking for, these apps just may have it.