On a whim, I decided to download Tinder in the bright and early hours of Wednesday morning. (No kidding, it was 2 am… usually when I get all of my brilliant ideas lmfao). Here's what happened:
The age on my Facebook account is incorrectly 18 (I don't know how to change it lol) hence allowing me to create a Tinder account as you use Facebook to connect to the app. However, I specified that I was 17 and had written that I am a Year 11 Student (Junior) on my profile, and made sure to work my age into every conversation I had, one way or another. I set my age range for 18-22, and my pictures were my Facebook profile picture and my cover photo, along with my current G@G picture too.
Also, before any of you say it: I was not looking for random hook-ups, even if that's 'what Tinder is used for' and all that. I have seen people make friends and get into long term relationships through that app, so it's not solely used for booty calls (even though admittedly, it mostly is). I didn't even really have a real reason for being on the app, to be quite honest, apart from wanting to see what it was like more than anything else.
Anywho, after tweaking some of the settings and got swiping, and in two hours, I had 60 matches and a few conversations going. I still had no clue what I was doing, and was questioning whether I should really be on Tinder or not. I thought it’d make an interesting question, so I asked G@G obviously. Check out the question here: http://www.girlsaskguys.com/dating/q2134316-am-i-too-young-to-be-on-tinder
I eventually went to bed that night after running out of likes, but I didn’t manage to check it much throughout most of the next day, apart from the occasional swipe here or there, which I read is a good way for you to get high visibility.
I was on an outing with some friends, and I had my phone with me, and I kept on getting all of these notifications about new matches and messages, which was actually making me anxious. After about the 20th ding from the app, I turned the notifications off completely, and suddenly it became a lot more peaceful. I thought it'd be exciting, but the app was just stressful, particularly when I was busy in other aspects of my life, which I often was. I felt obligated to respond to everyone because I'd been too forthcoming with the swipes, and honestly, I felt like I couldn't keep up.
Within less than 24 hours, I had 155 matches, and 43 conversations going.
When I first downloaded the app, I may have gone a little stir crazy with the right swipes. Though, some of the instant turn offs for me were as follows:
a) a group photo ---- seriously, I saw so many of these, do I really need to explain why this doesn't work?
b) a badly angled photo, taken from the side, or a photo where I couldn't see the entirety of the guy's face, and this was made worse when there were no other photos to look at either.
c) a grainy photo ---- why even bother? If I can't make out your nose on your face or other key facial features, I'm not gonna be swiping right.
d) I also kind of want to say mirror selfies ruled some guys out, but as long as it's clear and you're not pulling a stupid expression or hiding half your face behind your phone, I didn't mind them.
e) I don't know how appealing it is for guys, but those snapchat filters with the flower crowns or the butterflies were a no go (even though there were few and far between that actually had them).
f) sunglasses, really?
I matched with many people who had a lot of mutual friends of mine from Facebook, and as for people I actually knew, I matched with three Year 12 guys (seniors) from my own school, who I'm pretty sure don't even know I exist at school lmao.
A friend had mentioned to me that supposedly lots of guys swipe right on everyone and don't even bother looking at their faces, so upon hearing that, I decided to be more picky in my second round of swiping (after the 12 hour recharge period for swipes had finished). I noticed less matches, but I still got enough that I was more than satisfied with how things were going.
I didn't end up initiating any conversations, mostly because the ones that had already been started were keeping me quite busy. However, this is not to say that I don't believe girls should just sit back and wait for guys to message them, if you see someone you like the look of, go for it! I don't know what it'd be like from a male's perspective, but I do know that they marginally receive a lot less messages from girls, so perhaps you'd even be showing your initiative or whatever you'd like to call it by messaging the guy first.
I also didn't bother to reexamine profile pictures up close of the guys who messaged me, as I didn't want the way they looked to subconsciously influence the way I responded back. And, just so we're all clear, I didn't overtly flirt with any of these guys, and didn't 'get sexual' either, because that's just asking for trouble (I mean so is being on here to begin with, but you get my point).
[Watch this randomly placed but interesting 'Tinder Experiment' video above!]
As for the actual content of the messages, well, they varied, but many were actually quite... dull. See below for the highlights of the types of messages I received.
* Majority of the guys started with a 'hey' or 'hi, how are you' or talked about the weather, which is fine, but like I said, it get's boring after a while. I found that a lot of the conversations I had with these guys dropped off pretty fast, and the messages didn't flow so well.
* I got a few really bad and some not so bad pick up lines which I personally always find extremely entertaining. One guy put me on the spot and asked me for my best pick up line, which I thought was good.
* Some guys asked me a question to initate conversation, and others even used my age as a topic of discussion. Asking questions to get to know someone (so long as they're not completely pointless) tends to work well too.
* I got about two or three dudes who used a compliment as an opening line, which I accepted graciously and always responded politely, but honestly, regardless of whether you're being genuine or not, it does come across as though you're trying to suck up to me, and it's not necessary because I mean, you already swiped right!
* Others made some rather creepy comments about 'going to jail being worth it' or 'you don't know the half of all the dirty disgusting things I'd like to do to you,' etc. Guys, this won't get you laid, just blocked and reported.
* There was one guy who's opening message was 'I almost feel guilty swiping right, you have such an innocent face...' which I never got around to responding to, but for some reason this stuck in my head for a little bit, because it wasn't overly creepy, yet it left me with a lot of room to make a flirty/sexual comment in response if I wanted to.
* I did have one 18 year old guy rip into me about being 17 and how it was false advertising, against the app policy and also not safe, all of which is true. So good on you Jordan, you did the right thing.
As for upping the ante, unless they'd initially sent a flirty or sexual message, it was extremely rare for that I spoke to to become more flirty, which in this case makes sense as I'm under 18, but if I were over 18 and actively looking for someone, this would be a big downfall.
Most guys, particularly ones that were 19+ or in second or third year uni seemed a little hesistant to be talking to me, which I don't think is an inherently bad thing, even though the age of consent is 17 in my state.
To be quite honest, I thought everyone would be looking solely for hookups on Tinder, and while I didn't speak to a lot of people for long enough to work out what their true intentions were, there certainly seemed to be a variety of different types of people looking for different things.
But, in saying that, I still think that the general consensus is that Tinder is a hookup app, so I would not download it with the inherent expectation to find a long term relationship.
Overall, this was an interesting experience I had on Tinder (even if it was for a mere 24 hours until I deleted it), and not altogether a bad one, but I think I'll be waiting til I'm 18 until I download it again.