A Site for Sore Hearts

TINDER DATING by Alice Murray

A photo of a smartly dressed business man with dark wavy hair pops up on Grace’s phone.

“Hell yes, I would definitely pull him,” with one motion she presses the button on her smart phone screen marked with a green tick.

Seconds later a celebratory message appears on her screen. ‘‘It’s a match’’.

Welcome to the age of Tinder, the fastest growing sex/dating app that is taking Britain by storm.

Simply sign in via Facebook to browse through pictures of other singles in your area. Once shown a photo, Tinderers choose to give someone an “X” for “no” or a heart for “yes”.

If both parties tick yes the messaging can begin. Whether the premise freaks you out or floats your boat, Tinder is making headlines with its UK membership growing by 25% each week.

The speed of its interaction is rewriting the dating game

“It is so much fun,” coos Grace in between judging men on the angle of their jaw or how far their hairline has receded. “My flatmate and I do it all the time, we can spend hours every evening trawling through profiles, meeting new people, all the while sitting in our  s watching X Factor, this morning I met someone before I had even got out of bed.”

Say hello to the age of convenience dating.

Meeting people through social media is no new notion. Back in the 1800s the singletons among us would have simply popped an ad in the local paper’s lonely hearts column.

In the 1980s we moved with the times and party lines sprang up. The noughties saw the rise of online dating sites such as match.com.

So is Tinder a strange phenomenon or a natural evolution of the dating scene?

According to Harry Reis, Professor of Psychology at the University of Rochester, who co-authored a 2012 study on online dating our outlook on the craze has changed over time.

A decade ago online dating was regarded as the last chance at romance for the otherwise hopeless.

The once stigma-ridden world has been completely revived in the past few years, becoming a bastion of busy twenty-somethings in demanding jobs.

At one time it was assumed that the person advertising themselves on screen was there due to social ineptitude.

Now it is much more accurate to assume that they are working 12-hour days in an underpaid graduate job.

Who has time to trawl bars and wait for a guy to approach them?

Who can be bothered dropping their books in the hallway and waiting for someone to pick them up? Not generation Y.

Gone are the days when you would need to be a few glasses of Merlot in to join up for such a site.

Recently Miss USA Nina Meriwether proclaimed her love for tinder. “I think when you’re single you should try all avenues, and now there are so many new apps for dating – this one is just really fun,” she said.

According to Reis, before the rise of online dating and apps like Tinder the chance of meeting new people would go down dramatically once we had left university.

“Online dating is definitely a new and much needed twist on relationships,” says Reis.

“The internet holds great promise for helping adults form healthy and supportive romantic partnerships.”

Tinder has raised questions over whether or not it’s moral. Is it right to judge people solely on looks? Is it demeaning, disrespectful even objectifying?

Grace thinks not. She explains: “Everyone who joins knows they will be judged by their picture, how is it different from going to a bar and wanting to talk to the good looking guy in the corner?

“It’s just quicker and to be honest more fun.”


5 tips for happy Tindering

DON’T be cheesy in your bio. 

No one wants to read your life story straight away. Something witty like ‘if anyone asks we met in a bar’ is much more attractive than your favourite Shakespeare quote.

Choose your pictures wisely. 

Most girls are put off by a picture of a guy snuggled up to a girl who looks like she could be his girlfriend, and vice versa.

Don’t be disheartened. 

It’s hard to not be put off if you don’t get any matches straight away but remember that while it may be internet speed dating, just like in real life it can take time to reel in a catch.

Know what you want. 

Are you on Tinder for a hook up or a relationship? Concentrate on your goals and chose your matches accordingly.

BE safe. 

If you decide to take the step to meet your Prince Charming or Tinderella, do so in a public place and always tell someone where you’re off to.

Have fun. 

That’s what Tinder is all about – carefree flirting from your own home.