Love Is Just a Swipe Away With Tinder

Dating in high school is rough. You’ve known everyone for what seems like forever, and dating former friends can ruin relationships and make social life awkward. Not to mention having a significant other in the same school means that there’s no difference between school and personal life when it comes to your relationship. It’s almost like dating your coworker. But not in the cute way, like Jim and Pam. More like Michael Scott and Jan.

In today’s society of cell phone addiction and social media frenzy, the natural way for teenagers to solve this dating rut is through the holy grail of online dating apps — Tinder. Tinder launched in September 2012. Although starting off as just another dating app alongside ones such as Bumble, Match, ChristianMingle, Grindr, CougarLife and FarmersOnly. However, with its casual but not too casual format, bright colors, and fast-paced rhythm, Tinder began to own the dating app kingdom and established itself as a subgroup of itself. With Tinder, one makes an account and basically swipes through a catalogue of humans. Swiping right means that you “like” them, or at least are attracted enough to suggest intrigue, and if that person swipes right on you, it’s a match, and you can message them to meet up or chat. Some people just send photos of themselves in lieu of meeting, and others don’t choose to chat with their matches at all. Tinder has especially grown with the young adult demographic. Naturally, hormonal teenagers become bored with seeing the same faces everyday, and want to see what else is out there for them. It can also be a form of validation — proof for girl users that they’re attractive and dateable, and proof for boy users that they can still pick up girls with just a swipe. “Tinder is a fun way to pass the time,” said junior Dante Bastien, a Tinder enthusiast. “You expand your options in the dating pool and you meet a lot of people you never would have in your day-to-day life.”

Bastien did speak toward the more mature aspects of the site that have garnered commentary. “Since its an adult app, you end up talking to a lot of really mature people and that’s really cool,” he said.

Most high school aged Tinder users don’t use Tinder seriously. Most of us know the world of online dating is a murky and relatively unsafe one, so using Tinder as a way to chat is fairly harmless as long as there are no ulterior motives on either parties. It’s more of some kind of fun conversation starter, an Instagram that’s a little more edgy and a lot more risky. To avoid the actual dangers of the app, like being catfished or accidentally meeting up with someone with bad intentions, teens mostly just message other teens on it.

Rieley Martin, a senior, says, “honestly I just use it to mess with people, but I’ve never been out with anyone on Tinder.” She continues, saying, “It’s nice knowing that you’re never going to see these people if things don’t work out. It’s also easier to show them what you want, because at school people just see everything.”

Martin is right. Social media allows you to manipulate your profile however you please, and Tinder is no exception. We have little control over other people’s perceptions of us in the real world, but online we can warp them to be whatever we desire.

Tinder is a fun way to pass the time for young hormonal teenagers. It’s easy to use and so are the people. Just be careful, because you never know who people really are- you could be expecting a Rieley but get a Dante.