OPINION: Just delete your Tinder profile

Author’s Note: I must disclose that this article is an opinion article backed up with facts from accredited news organizations or valid web sources. The opinions expressed in this article are mine and do not reflect that of any organization or business I have previously worked for, currently work for or will work for in the future. This article is not meant to belittle any political groups or influential people in power.

Swipe left. Swipe right.

You and – whoever – just matched! Send a message to get the conversation started.

Then you and the person get into small talk that either continues in getting to know someone and possibly getting into a relationship, you stay friends, you engage in a hookup or you talk until one of you is just bored of the conversation and “unmatch” with them.

But the 270 million people on dating apps are realizing just how cringy and weird dating apps actually are. They’re no longer for dating. They’re really no longer for hook-ups either. They’re a business model keeping you hooked on the app for as long as possible, much like Instagram and Twitter with their simplicity.

The thing to understand with social media is the app is not the product, you are.

So while you scroll or swipe on the apps, you’re the product of what those apps are. You give the apps life to do what they need to do. Positive feedback on your posts or getting a match on a dating app stimulates your brain to release dopamine.

You feel rewarded because you did something good and want to do it again, so you stay longer on the app so you can continue this cycle. Tinder is a prime example of this addicting cycle (among other apps, of course.)

Tinder is the blueprint to this social media business kind of addiction. It is no longer a simple dating app. The trick is you are both the product and the consumer. Sounds confusing, right? Allow me to explain.

Let’s start with the idea of the product. You’re looking for a match on the dating app, so you perfect your dating profile and set your preferences for what you like in a potential partner. You become the product of the app by having your profile present.

You then become the consumer of the product. You’re swiping left and right to try to match with someone you’re interested in. The term “relationshopping” refers to this exact process.

The idea of being interested in a person based off of an online presence and a few attributes over time can dehumanize a person and shrink them to just a list of traits, as explained by Brooke Meredith.

One of Tinder’s features is you can set your pronouns and fully be yourself on your profile. We’ll discuss how this inconvenienced so many people in the LGBTQ community. And plus-sized people. And marginalized groups. And those with any view in life.

A lengthy Tinder ban article on Jezebel highlights the story of Molly Mallon who, in short, put something about supporting reproductive rights in the bio of her dating profile. Due to the nature of the topic throughout all of 2022, her profile ended up being banned.

Another example in the article was of Kat Blaque, a popular YouTuber and Black trans woman, who was banned a few times from Tinder based on her gender. Her theory, based on observations of trans people on dating apps, states “the vast majority of dating apps are tailored to entertain and satisfy cis men.”

So, what happens when you don’t fit the consumer interest? When speaking in terms of how dating apps dehumanize you, you become “broken goods.”

Showing support for reproductive rights, being a part of the LGBTQ community and even being plus-sized have the potential to get you banned (if you post pics showing your body, even in clothes, it can go against “community guidelines.)

There are twice as many men on Tinder as there are women, so it’s fair to say basically men are the consumers and women are the product.

When men become the consumers of dating apps, women become the product. Because our society is so profoundly rooted in its early-2000s culture of what a woman “should be,” they can be banned if they don’t live up to that group of traits dating apps shrink you down to.

Tinder is a pool of toxicity when the banning process is so vague, thin and with little room for explaining why people are banned.

Sophie Sick, senior communications manager for Tinder explained the dating app company is aware of the targeted behaviors and is working on fixing the banning process.

For now, the issue still lingers. Do you really want to be a product in 2022 at the expense of finding a relationship?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: