About two weeks ago, I entered the world of digital dating; a magical world full of conversations behind the safety of one’s own computer screen or phone. I met a few colorful characters along the way, and for a quick second, my ego grew ten times larger from all of the complimentary messages I was receiving in my inbox.
Although online dating turned out to be quite an experience, I decided to delete my various profiles after just a few days. Call me old fashioned, but I’m just not into receiving pictures of body parts popping up every time I receive a new message.
My main driving force for writing this series was because I’m fascinated with the role that technology plays in our lives for communication purposes. When I was younger, I thought that flirting meant being with each other in person and exchanging witty comebacks with someone (while simultaneously looking super cute). Now, flirting can mean Snapchatting or liking each others pictures on Instagram. Haven’t you ever heard your friends say, “Oh my goshhhh, he/she liked three of my Instagram photos!” or “Okay, seriously, we’ve been Snapchatting all day!”
With technology playing such a big role in our lives, it’s inevitable that it plays a role in our social realms as well.
What was once considered taboo is much more acceptable today than it was a few years ago; now, many people meet their significant others online. It’s much more common for people to meet via an online source. Tinder for example, has 1.2 billion users, and creates about 15 million matches everyday.
Tinder, is where I met the most guys who were close to my age and in college, which was not surprising, as the average age of users range from 18-24 years old. Some were looking to hook up, but others were also trying to meet people for actual dating and relationships. As one guy shared with me, he had created a Tinder because he just wanted to see who else was out there instead of his smaller circle of people he knows (a male friend told me this guy was lying though…).
Given the reputation of Tinder, I wasn’t surprised that although it’s considered a “dating” app, most people were looking for more of a one-time meet-up.
When I created my Tinder profile, I had no intentions of going out with someone from the site, but when the opportunity arose, I thought it would be fun to see what would happen. I went out on two dates with this guy and he was surprisingly pleasant. I was happy to learn that not every single person on Tinder was looking to hook up. In the end, my personal verdict on Tinder is that it’s much more of a hook-up site than a dating site.
OkCupid on the other hand, offered men of all ages who were looking for a younger crowd of women. Some men were very adamant about showing how much money they made and what type of girl they were looking for. This is the site where I received a lot of inappropriate photos. Although Tinder guys used some of the worst pick-up lines on the planet (“we would make the cutest babies!”), they weren’t necessarily creepy, which was the vibe I got from OkCupid users. My verdict for OkCupid is that the men are much more intense, and to use it with caution.
With online dating, it really depends on what you’re looking for and your personal dating expectations/preferences. I think that it’s a way to get out of one’s comfort zone and see what else is out there. It can also take off some of the pressure by talking to a person you are interested in online, prior to meeting them.
Although I deleted my profiles, it was actually really fun to meet people that I may have never met if it wasn’t for these sites—plus I got a fun date out of it! Make sure to come back next week where I bring the series to a close, and share my final thoughts on digital dating.