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Has Tinder really led to the ‘dating apocalypse?’ The Goss.ie team found out for themselves

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The world of modern dating has completely changed over the last two years specifically – there was always one or two people you knew on a dating website, but the launch of dating app Tinder has completely changed the game.

This month Vanity Fair published a piece about the realities of modern dating and how apps like Tinder and other social media sites have led to the dating apocalypse.

We all read it here in the Goss.ie office and we all had varying opinions, to the point where we talked about it for hours.

The Vanity Fair piece was all based in the US so we decided to see what it was really like to be on Tinder here in Ireland

From our reporters to our sales staff to our production team – five Goss team members decided to join Tinder for one week, we’ve all remained anonymous, here are the results…

 

Girl 1 

“I only last two days on Tinder – because I found the guy who ghosted me.”

tinder4

I was never a huge fan of Tinder or the idea of online dating at all.

I don’t have a specific type, in fact you could line up all my ex’s and maybe only two of them would slightly look similar.

I’m all about the chemistry and the connection so Tinder feels pointless to me. I can’t really see people I find ‘attractive’ as I have to feel it in the moment. So creating a Tinder account this week was weird for me.

I had been on it once before while I was out of the country, and I got a bit freaked when I was asked out so I deleted it. It was the early days of Tinder and clearly things have changed since then.

The first thing that strikes me are the profile photos. I set my age 25-40 and so many of the guys I see are topless and trying to flex their muscles.

Total turn off for me and I’m mainly swiping left over and over again. There are so many cringe worthy photos on the app, and I’m quickly screen grabbing and sharing some of the profiles with my friends, it provided great entertainment to be fair.

tinder love
Honesty? This guy was up front at least

Of course there are tonnes of profile photos with the cutest dogs ever, but that won’t make me swipe right (sorry guys).

I actually kind of liked the up front profiles, like this guy who said “I don’t make love I f***…hard”, it’s a bit crass but at least he’s being up front about what he’s really looking for. (Don’t worry I did not swipe right).

One guy looks cute and we match and every time someone in the office matches there’s an air of excitement.

I start talking to this one guy and he’s actually quite lovely. He asks me what my job is and where I live – seems all a bit dodgy when you’ve no idea who you’re talking to. I avoid answering specifics.

Another guy tried to guess where I lived based on how far away I was from him…thought that was fairly creepy.

I matched with about 8 people in the first day, and the most recent match seems slightly normal (and he hasn’t tried to find my address like the others).

We chat away but I feel Tinder is pointless, I’d rather be in a pub having a drink with this guy. I get bored and start playing the game again.

There were some seriously bizarre profile pictures – including this one where a 50 Shades fanatic was looking for some spanking fun.

Tinder spanks
Spank time: People are very open on the app

I come across a few people I know, a few people I’ve worked with and a few men that are married and some who are in serious relationships.

Tips for the guys out there having affairs – stop using your wedding photo as your Tinder profile picture…

Cards on the table, full disclosure, honestly my head was kind of elsewhere in the romance department as I met someone recently that I actually liked and then he kind of disappeared.

As well as Tinder and online dating being a recent phenomenon so has ghosting…another annoying and messed up new trend where someone “ghosts” you by not returning your texts, calls etc and basically “phasing you out.”

Just recently I was 100% ghosted – and it’s not a nice feeling at all.

tinder1
Ups and downs: Tinder is one tricky game

The Vanity Fair article made out that men basically can’t be satisfied with just one girl anymore, and that now is the hardest time for young people to date (especially women), and I believe it, I feel it, and most of my friends do too.

So many girls I know in relationships are just so thankful that they’re not single anymore because they also believe there’s too much choice out there for guys and I get the whole “I’m so lucky I’ve found *insert husband material guy’s name*. I’d hate to be out there looking.”

And social media has messed up modern dating too, it’s not just about Tinder.

Thanks to notifications on Facebook and Whatsapp you can see when the last time that guy or girl you like has been online, you can watch their videos, see their tweets, check if they’ve looked at your Snapchat story – it’s difficult to move on in the world of new technology and it’s difficult not to get hooked.

Thanks to the immediacy of online, the millions of Instagram accounts and Snapchats, the ridiculous access to people all over the world – men, in my opinion, are losing the need to settle down with one person, or even make an effort with one person.

While you’re in their company it’s fine but as soon as you’ve left them, the guy you like has jumped on Snapchat, sent a Tweet, started a Facebook conversation with someone or of course has gone fishing on Tinder.

vf
Dating apocalypse? Vanity Fair make some valid points

Personally I’m a one-man kind of lady, if I have a connection with someone, if I really like them, then I’ll date them and I can’t even see other men around me once I’ve started something new.

I have trust issues like a lot of people I’m sure, so I try to take my time when it comes to dating new.

So recently I had met someone but I had suspicions they were doing just as Vanity Fair described – messaging other people and looking online for other options.

And as I read through the article I agreed that women were totally being f***ed over right now, men have so much choice why would they bother focusing on one person?

The whole idea pissed me off, and I started thinking that women need to get ahead of the game…can’t we just play too? So I started playing…

As I got sucked into the ‘game’ that Tinder is and just passing time swiping left, left, left…I realised girls have a lot of choice too.

I started wondering why I haven’t been on Tinder all this time myself?? You suddenly realise that person you like isn’t all that important – because there are plenty more people out there like them, and all I have to do is swipe right.

ghosted
Ghosting: Social media has created some crap new trends

Then just as I’m feeling smug and thinking that there’s plenty more fish in the sea, I get a bit of a shock…the guy I’ve been waiting to hear back from appears on my screen.

And he’s just been active…WTF??!!

The guy who ghosted me, who disappeared off the face of the earth was suddenly right in front of me…mystery solved.

Suddenly I remembered seeing the Tinder symbol appearing on his phone one of the times I was with him – but I had told myself it wasn’t what I thought, and he had every right to be on it anyway since we weren’t in a relationship… or did I just think he had the right?

I really can’t say what the rules are anymore and what behaviour is acceptable.

This new age dating playground has led us to believe (especially women) that being treated like crap is normal, that you’re only ever an option, every other girl on Tinder, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter – they’ve turned into your competition and we just have to keep fighting for attention.

And this is the problem with modern ‘dating’ – guys like him think it’s okay not to contact you again, not to see you again and not to treat you right because he can just jump on Tinder from the comfort of his own home and get someone else over.

It sounds harsh but it’s 100% true. Why would a man ever want to settle down if he can go through life ghosting people while picking a new girl everyday? No grumpy girlfriends, no strings, no commitment – but a whole lotta sex.

So I was pretty pissed off and put down Tinder for 24 hours.

The next day we were all on Tinder again for this feature so I decided to go back on – but my interest in Tinder had died.

MY VERDICT:

Yes Tinder can be a bit of fun and if you’re out for some unattached fun it’s probably the perfect place – as long as you make that clear.

The thing I hate the most is dishonesty , so if you’re on Tinder, if you want to be single and just ride around then just say that – there’s plenty of people that want to play that game too.

I think Vanity Fair were spot on in what they discovered – it’s a great short term fix but long term men are treating women a lot worse than they used to, and Tinder and social media in general has a lot to answer for.

For sure cheating is more common than ever and I’ve heard awful stories of women being treated bad by guys they are seeing, being ghosted etc, has Tinder and social media allowed for that behaviour to get worse?

New age media has allowed for dick pics, naked selfies, and lots and lots of sexting….but although it’s getting us connected to people faster – it’s also ending things and cutting people off easier.

And the worst part?

You’ll always know they’ve read your Whatsapp, you’ll always know if they’ve seen your Facebook message and if you’re on Tinder you’ll see they’re still out there scouting for girls.

I’ve always liked that saying “never make someone your priority while you remain their option” and it seems like we’re all just options in the new Tinder age…

 

Girl 2

“Tinder ISN’T just full of sleazy guys – I’m going on a date next week!”

 

tinder7

I’ve been on Tinder for a while now, I first joined in college.

Needless to say it was an exciting time as the majority of my campus were on it and it gave me the opportunity to put a name to faces or simply communicate further with boys I already knew.

All my friends were on tinder and honestly we spent our lectures swiping instead of taking down notes.

Straight away I was matching with guys and I was happy to meet them, it seemed like a good way to meet people on campus or maybe do more…

Most people I matched with were people I had friends in common with on Facebook or else someone I had seen around but I was wary of the randomers on Tinder with no mutual friends and I kept it to people I had mutual friends with or known before.

Even now I always swipe left if I see no friends in common.

tinder cheeky
Cheeky: Some guys had hilarious chat up lines

I began to start meeting one guy out on nights out for a long time, as soon as I would head out I’d have a message from him on Tinder, so we would hook up that way.

Then he headed off on his Erasmus so I went back to playing the Tinder game again.

Another Tinder match also led to a series of kisses on nights also until I settled down with a guy and that was the the end of tinder for over two years.

I’ve been on the app again this year but it wasn’t until I started researching for this feature that I realised what it’s really like.

I found myself swiping left over and over again, and I kept wondering were half of these profiles just set up as a Catfish? And then I kept thinking a situation like Catfish could happen.

The most bizarre chat up line I got (if I can even call it that) who said “I wanna paint you green and spank you like a bold avocado ;)”…em no thanks?

tinder avacado
This actually happened: Some lines were such fails

Although I got some laughs out of one-liners like that, no one actually caught my attention.

Anyone I did know on the app or anyone I genuinely fancied I did match with, which was a good start.

But a huge problem I find with Tinder (especially in Ireland) is that most people don’t actually message you. It’s all one big waiting game, who will write to who first, and that annoyed me.

The good thing about matching with people I kind of know is I found it was a good conversation starter when I met them in real life again.
For the confident few that did write me I like them even more now, one charmer in particular I am actually going on a date with!

We’re meeting up next week and I’m interested to see how that will go, he’s not really my type but he’s managed to talk me around so I think he could be a good one.

tinder alphabet
Nonsense: I didn’t reply to messages like this – answer obviously ‘F U’
My Verdict:

Honestly I disagree with the idea that Tinder is just a hook up place for sex .

Look if you do just want sex you can go on the app and get it but if you want a date you can get that too.

You just need separate the sleazy guys from the nice ones (just like you would have to do in a bar or club).

Overall I like do like Tinder and think it’s another great social network to meet people and it’s also a great confidence boost when you’ve got nobody to love…and you never know who you will match with next!

Girl 3

“I played the Tinder game and I lost – it was only a matter time before someone got hurt.”

tinder8

I really enjoyed my first day on tinder.

There is an instant gratification attached to it -It became my little pick me up if I was feeling down. There’s no rejection, just an immense feeling of satisfaction when someone you’ve liked likes you back.

It doesn’t feel desperate either (which I thought it might). Everyone on Tinder is actually the same boat. I mean sure you come across a few lunatics here and there, but the majority of the people I came across seemed to be just like me; relatively normal, just on it for a bit of fun and maybe more.

But like most things, playing on Tinder was only fun for so long.

It actually seemed to be only a matter of time for all of us in the Goss.ie office until we came across a profile that hurt, a profile that completely changed the game.

So there you are trying to have the time of your life on Tinder and you come across a guy from your life that you think you might actually like.

Not a man you’re in love with but a man that you might actually like to spend time with when you’re not completely off your face. A man you’d actually consider having sex with when it’s bright out…you know yourself.tinder3

Then comes the dreaded question, “do I swipe left or right?” on this guy I’ve been with.

At the end of the day if it’s a guy you actually like, you are always going to swipe right. Who can resist the temptation of knowing if someone you like is open to talking to you on an app that is primarily used for sex? No one.

So of course curiosity got the better of me and I swiped right and what do you know? We matched.

And of course, I’m delighted. Little did I know though, this was the end of my fun on Tinder completely.

Now instead of swiping right to my new potential friends and lovers, I’m obsessing over this one profile. Suddenly no profile seems interesting enough to get me to swipe right, unless somebody literally looks like James Franco, which to be fair one did.

jamesf

Ah James: I would have swiped for you

From then on all I did on tinder was flick through the profiles endlessly, thoroughly unimpressed and honestly more interested in checking on how long it had been since my guy was online.

I sat there secretly tormenting myself with the thought of the girls he was talking to and what he was doing with them. Which I feel were valid enough concerns, as to be fair Tinder is hardly a place where you go to catch up with old friends and organise lunch dates.

From here, things just got worse…

Not only was I stuck in this new unhealthy cycle, but also then he started talking to me. We discussed each other’s progress on Tinder, laughed about the crazies we had encountered etc. All the usual stuff.

Sure there were flirtatious undertones to the conversations (however I feel like this may be impossible to avoid on tinder?) but if one thing was obvious it was that neither of us were expressing any sort of committed interest in the other.

tinderlogog

It’s a match: I got totally side tracked

This was a turning point for me…

It made me realise that even though tinder can be a lot of fun, which I genuinely think it can be, if you’ve already fallen for someone, you’re fucked.

Either (a) You come across their profile and start crying or (b) You match with them, pretend to love tinder as much as they do, and just proceed to lie and play the ‘who can have sex with the most people and care the less’ game.

Lets be honest, neither are great options.
My Verdict:

I honestly do believe that Tinder is a lot of fun. That first day, I did have a blast.

I feel like it’s a great place to go to meet new, interesting people and just generally have a bit of craic. I just learned this week that it’s not the place to go if you’re already hung up on someone else.

If you’re on it and this is the case, it can end badly and just like I was, you’ll be playing all sorts of games. “How long has it been since he’s been online?’ or “How many matches does he have?”

Nobody wants to go down this road.  Dating has always been and always will be a sort of a game. The Internet has just taken it to a whole new level.

vf

The Vanity Fair article talks about the idea of people having too many options now because of the Internet and how this is resulting in people having no interest in making one person their priority.

But why does this have to be a bad thing?As long as you’re being honest with the people you are sleeping with, I don’t think there is any issue with someone playing the field.Dating and serious relationships aren’t for everyone, especially those in their twenties.

Tinder gives people the freedom to have a bit of fun and meet new people. Which, as long as you’re being careful, doesn’t seem like a bad thing to me.But you do have to be careful.

And have the balls to admit if you actually like someone, and if they don’t like you back in the same way… move on. Don’t be a coward like me and start playing games, using every form of social media to do so.All in all I wouldn’t say Tinder has led to the dating apocalypse.

Maybe its just giving people the freedom to live how they really want to at certain points in their lives; without restraints or restrictions and meeting as many people as possible.

You just have to be careful and use it wisely…

Girl 4

“I’m such a picky princess – and Tinder has turned me into a hypocrite.”

tinder6

Since reading the Vanity Fair article I was appalled but not very surprised because the dating culture in Ireland has become, in my opinion, dormant in recent years.

My friends tell me dating stories and sometimes I just long for that old fashioned courting that our parents were all about but it seems but a distant memory, a story from a time gone by.

Nowadays social media has killed that thrill and excitement and leaves little to the imagination, literally, so like many singletons around me I decided to give Tinder a go.

I still believe in traditional dating but I thought this app could be fun for a young twenty something but I soon found it was a place to see what frisk people were snooping around and also to see who had been dumped and back fresh on the dating scene.

tinder gun

WTF? I came across this guy within the first few hours

Last year I decided to give the app a proper try because I’d been single for some time and felt I was ready to join the dating world again, and so I logged on and chose what I thought to be cute, eye catching and fun photos and then the swiping commenced.

I was careful when viewing possible suitors, I know I was on Tinder but I didn’t want to choose the first young man that appeared on my screen so I took some time to examine before swiping right.

One of my first matches was a young doctor, attractive, sporty and we even had mutual friends through Facebook, which for most women is actually important so I could make a few inquiries before agreeing to any date.After a few conversational messages, an invite for coffee soon followed and with little hesitation I agreed.

We decided to go to a popular Dublin coffee shop and with some nerves I made my way to my ‘date’. I didn’t dress up too much but enough to catch his eye, it was coffee and not dinner after all.

tinder1

Success! I matched with someone that seemed perfect

Conversation was in full flow and I felt like this was a third date. We had loads in common, had a laugh and there was zero awkward silences.

I couldn’t believe my luck and he was hot! After an hour or so of non stop chit-chat we made our way outside and he even walked me to the Luas and we both said we had a fun time and would like to do it again.

I was delighted and felt really good, I made my way home and within seconds I had Whatsapp’d all the girls with all the details (yes girls Whatsapp each other too and we talk about EVERYTHING too).

A day passed…two days…then a week and nothing! The lovely and sweet Dr McDreamy had turned into Dr McSteamy – the elusive one with other options…I had been ghosted!

I genuinely felt a little deflated and shocked but I decided to give Tinder another go, surely I just had a false start so I couldn’t throw the towel in just yet.

ghosted

Another one: I was ghosted too

After some more careful consideration I matched an attractive guy and once we matched he started the conversation and he was interesting, worked in accounting but was pursuing his dream of acting.

Substance and intelligence I thought. After brief texting he came to meet a friend and I on our night out and we all chatted but as they say three is a crowd.

My friend and I made our way to the club and we bid farewell to this guy, without a kiss might I add and within no time I received a text about our short but sweet encounter but partying with a female friend distracted me from replying.

The next day a double text and again I was busy and genuinely forgot to reply which led to a THIRD text.

Sorry dude, stage 5 clinger…good luck.So I guess I ghosted somebody right back…so I’m just as bad really.tinder3

Fast forward and Vanity Fair has landed before my eyes with a harsh yet actual account of the online dating world from the eyes of the users and serial Tinder daters.

I started wondering if reality had become so blurred to young singletons that an app is now the only form of chivalry? Sadly that’s what my love life has come to.

I’m social and maybe a party girl so I am constantly out in bars and clubs, which should be a stomping ground for suitors but every night resulted in a trip to the chipper with the girls while we bitched about the hot guy across the bar who made eye contact but never spoke to me.Or the dude who offered to buy me a drink only to be insulted when his offer of the ‘ride’ was refused (it happens).

So a week trial on Tinder seemed like the right thing for me right now,  recently I have come to care less for the dating world, I lose interest in men after some boring texts and genuinely I’ve turned into a man myself – I see boys as objects now, just as they see us.

Yes I have become THAT girl. That bitch who doesn’t text back, I’m starting to think I have ghosted a few people now.

tinder arm

I decided this time around I was going to be ruthless about my swiping and I laid down a few rules for myself.

If the first photo didn’t make me look twice, I swiped left. If I saw a photo of a doped up tiger, I swiped left. If I saw another gym selfie, it’s left again and just a general pout selfie, yeah you know – left!

To my own profile, I chose a cute selfie (girls can use selfies), a sassy photo from a night out, a festival snap, a picture with a friend and one with my dog.Each represented what I thought to be me.

Fun, outgoing, friendly, animal lover with sass.After some time of swiping, my thumb began to ache from the constant left swipe. Surely someone could tick my, be it selective, boxes but it was two days in before I made my first match.

A guy I knew of, mutual friends, good photos, attractive young professional and I admit I was pleased when we matched and I sat back and waited for the conversation to open.

And waited and waited so much so that I got my second match.Another guy that fit the bill but again zero chat.

Is this what online dating had become? A place for people to judge by appearance and a world where women make the first move?tinder moment

I started to use Tinder just like guys do

Have men become too pompous and self righteous or had women become more powerful and in control?

Either way I was unsure of my next move so I continued swiping.My friend, who was happily in love with a guy she met in ‘real life’ decided to assist in my quest and insisted I swipe right to a guy she knew – a message soon followed.

Nothing too eager or crass, simple and polite with a reference to one of my photos. But I decided to leave him wait because there was a sour taste in my mouth.Hypocritical perhaps but didn’t care one bit…

The following day as we discussed our week so far on Tinder I began to wonder if a lack of a bio had anything to do with my unsuccessful matches?

So there and then I decided to give a tongue and cheek line but I also decided that I would try open conversation with one of my matches to see what would happen.

tinder bio

New matches: Once I changed my profile things sped up

In no time, I got a reply. I opened with a sassy line and it did the trick. We have exchanged some messages, nothing mind blowing or romantic and there has been no mention of meeting up so I’m not holding onto any hope.

A reference was made to my bio so maybe it did the trick.

MY VERDICT:

I’m not really sure what my aim for Tinder was. I think deep down I knew that the Vanity Fair article was sadly accurate.

We have become a sex obsessed, dateless population, and for me Tinder just became an effort and a string of boring conversations just made me realise that kind of dating is just not my style.

While my account is still active, I’m in no rush to go swiping and to be honest I’ll only use it when I am bored and hungover and looking for something to pass the time.

Tinder can be fun and useful if everyone is in agreement and on the same page but it can also become a place of destruction and dismay if your emotions are exploited – something I wasn’t willing to let myself in for.

I just think online dating has become a playground, you run gleefully towards the swing eager to hop on first but within no time boredom prevails and you move onto the next ride.

Guy 1

“Grindr and Tinder are just the same – it’s all about creeping”

tinder guy

I first joined Tinder back in 2013 when it was the app of the moment and everybody was on it, it was normally seen as a straight app but Tinder is just as popular with same sex couples now.

The app is extremely superficial and your interest in someone is reduced to how good they look in a handful of pictures – but then again, all online dating is superficial.

I was only on the app a week or two before I had a found a date – a guy from South Africa who I ended up going on about seven or eight dates with.

My faith in Tinder was firmly in place and after our dates had fizzled out a couple of weeks later, I happily started swiping again.

One of the biggest problems I have noticed with Tinder is that nobody seems to want to be the one to start the conversation.

tinder debs

Seriously? I was asked to a debs on Tinder

The most important feature of the app is that you know from the get-go the people you match with have a mutual interest in you.

Yet, from scrolling through my own matches (and those of my friends), most people don’t speak to each other even after they match.

I started wondering why this is and it turns out a lot of people on Tinder aren’t looking for relationships, dates, or even sex – they’re just on it for the creep.

I think that’s pretty pointless and a complete waste of time – everyone knows that Facebook is the go-to place for creeping.

A few more swipes in and I spotted someone who said they were in a happy, committed relationship and were just looking to make friends. Has to be pretty awkward when your partner finds out the only “friends” you made were the ones you thought were hot.

tinder prof

Bizarre: Some profiles were very strange

Eventually, I got so frustrated with the dead-end conversations I was having with guys on it that I called it quits and removed the app from my phone.

After over a year off it, I decided to give it another go this week.

It turns out I was a lot pickier this time around and only have a fraction of the matches that I had when I first used it.

This ended up being a good thing as I was having better conversations with people – at first.

One guy messaged me and we were having general chit-chat for a while before he informed me that he was looking for a date to his debs.

I have no problem being asked to a dance – but at least meet up with someone a few times before you inform them you’re only looking for someone you can drag to a formal so you don’t have to go by yourself.

This time around, I started most of the conversations I had with guys – which they seemed to appreciate.

A lot of guys randomly stopped replying (and I hadn’t asked or said anything weird or creepy), however none of them unmatched with me.

tinder

Chats: You end up in and out of a lot of conversations

People seriously need to up their game when it comes to having conversations over text as the majority of chats I had went dead after a handful of messages.

I’m still using the app now, however nobody on it is that great and I’ll probably delete it again soon to spare myself the nausea of swiping through duck-lipped selfies and over-sharing bio’s.

We’ve all heard stories (and a lot of us will know people) who started fully-fledged relationships from using the app so there is a chance of meeting someone you’ll jel with (there’s just a much larger chance of getting absolutely nowhere).

My VERDICT:

I think if you’re only looking for the ride, Tinder is probably a pretty good place to go.

Looks are more important than personality on the app (lets not pretend) and you can definitely find someone to shag if you really want to.If you’re looking for someone who can carry a decent conversation – stick to real life.

Tinder has definitely changed the dating landscape and even if you meet someone cool – you (or them) will probably still wonder could there be someone better a few more swipes away.

#GossDoesTinder