Claudia and I reviewing tinder in one of the large canteens in our university made me want to try the app (with a fake profile) over the weekend, just to see if I would find it as revolting as I do in theory. That was what happened… The using tinder part, not the revolting part. Though, it was revolting, just not as revolting. There’s a big difference.
With Will Forte’s half-shaved face as my profile picture, I ventured forth into the land of ‘swipes-to-get-laid-dom’. I subjected myself to the process of bleeding empathy every time I thought “no way” and swiped left. It’s a really weird thing to see people as boxed representations. Well, at least in comparison to actual human beings with their many years of lived experiences, all of which combine to form something complex. And this is indigestible in the all of 3 seconds you grudgingly reserve for viewing one of these profiles.
Two things struck out to me. One, people really do believe the photos they use represent them. The question to this I would ask is – “is that really you in a nutshell?” More than half of them are weirdly angled selfies, having nothing to do with these people whatsoever apart from the fact that they think selfies make good representations of themselves. And so, it’s either that they just want to “hit” something, or that they really are in favor of selfies. And both could potentially be dubious.
I don’t mean this in a judgemental way, I just think that the way the app requires so much upfrontness with people that we should be uncomfortable with it. Even if it is just for quick sexual encounters (it is, I’ve asked), seeing other people as profiles on the basis of sex is a digression, and even a drunken encounter in a bar does a better job of representing the way a person is. An app this immersive and personal requires you to act as if who you are is a matter of fact, rather than something that matters, apart from the facts. It could warp the way you feel about other people, and more scarily, yourself.
And the other thing – why did 29 people swipe right for this?
**don’t mind that “just recently” is redundant
If you thought this post was bullshit, here’s some Shlohmo: