This has the curious effect of making everyone less attractive: Most people’s Facebook profiles, scrubbed by years of exposure to grandparents and employers, are flatter, less interesting than their online dating profiles. Hinge announced in February it would soon roll out greater profile customization, but as of mid-March those changes had not arrived.
Once it does, maybe more Hinge users will be able to get their foot in the door. Instead, it’s what creator Alexandra Chong calls “a Yelp for boys.” Women can sign up to review their male Facebook friends, whether they’re platonic BFFs, one-night stands or long-term boyfriends – and the whole thing is anonymous.
While a recent article detailed all the ways people are using the app for casual sex, the first Tinder date this reporter went on was a perfectly G-rated evening with hot chocolate in a park.
The lack of profiles on Tinder turns out to be its most salient feature.
There are downsides – creepy messages for women, the possibility of obsessing over strangers you will never meet – but there’s a reason these sites haven’t changed much over the years.
(They basically help people find dates.) There’s plenty of advice online on how to “hack” these sites for your own benefit, and you’ll likely not have to set up a massive data-mining enterprise to do so. If changing your interests to become more datable sounds strange and inhuman to you, don’t worry.
But what if you’re intimidated by the thought of all those strangers?
Then you might need Like many apps, Tinder verifies your identity through Facebook, and you can see how many friends you have in common with each of your prospective matches.
Tinder doesn’t do this exactly, but it found another way to cut down on the creep factor, through what its founders call “the double opt-in”: You can only message someone after you’ve both signaled that you’d be down to talk to the other.
Due to this feature, Tinder is succeeding with women turned off by traditional dating sites.
The mechanics are simple: Sign in with Facebook (no need to invent a witty username), upload some cute pictures and choose your location settings – just as those spammy banner ads promise, you’ll be greeted with an endless array of sexy singles in your area.