Dating apps like Tinder, Bumble and Hinge provide a location-based service that allows its users to express their romantic interest for other users on the app.
On Tinder, it is as simple as swiping right when you find someone attractive and swiping left to move on to the next person. Seton Hall students shared their general thoughts on online dating.
“I don’t use it that much to be honest,” William Kubrak, a junior communications major, said. “I think it is better to meet someone in person, but if you have a connection with someone on a dating app, there is nothing wrong with that.”
“Earlier on, I think it was more wholesome, like finding real relationships, but now it is a lot less intimate,” Alexander Silbermann, a sophomore political science major, said. “Tinder and all these other apps are just swipe right and swipe left.”
Though concrete numbers have never been released, “Statista” estimated that there were about 7.7 million Tinder users in the U.S. at the end of 2019.
Many students said that they consider Tinder to be the most popular dating app, but one student shared his thoughts on a different app.
“OkCupid has been around for some time,” Kubrak said. “It’s older than Tinder and it’s a pretty casual app. I actually know people who got married on OkCupid.”
“Personally, I use Tinder,” Brandon Bowley, a sophomore graphic design and interactive media major, said. “I’ve went across Bumble, but that is more for marriage.”
The Daily Mail described Bumble as “a female-friendly app” that is compatible for those ages 22-30. When asked why he likes using Tinder, Bowley said, “You don’t have to worry about the person seeing you at your worst because you can put up whatever pictures you want to.”
In the age of social media, some students criticize dating apps for preventing in-person interactions. Students shared their thoughts on whether they believe meeting someone online is the same as meeting someone in person.
“I think you feel more of a connection in person because you are actually talking to them and you can make a judgment on them,” Silbermann said.
Kubrak said, “I think people rely on [dating apps] more than just going out and meeting someone in person.”
In August 2018, Tinder released “TinderU.” It operates the same way as Tinder, but it allows college students to enter their school email address, thus limiting matches to those who are also on the same campus. Students shared why they believe so many college students use dating apps.
“It’s an online way to navigate your campus, and everyone loves social media, so people just use it as networking,” Silbermann said.
Bowley said, “Coming out of high school and going to college, you realize that the world is so much bigger, and there are so many people you’ve never met.”
Some students said that these dating apps could possibly affect someone’s mental health.
“I think for people that use it too much, it could,” Silbermann said. “You could become desensitized just swiping left or right based on looks; it’s pretty superficial.”
Kubrak said that dating apps do not affect your mental health “unless you meet someone who traumatizes you.”
Jorie Mickens can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.