Made in China: What do dating apps mean to you?

With the over-saturation of singles near you, the novelty of endlessly scrolling on Tinder or Hinge has become less and less meaningful. After finally giving in to peer pressure and downloading my first dating app a little over a year ago, I’ve come to the conclusion that dating apps are more for instant validation rather than genuine efforts to meet your soul mate.

Most dating apps have now been normalized to be the best avenue for hook-up culture, leaving those to make an actual connection difficult. You cannot truly understand someone and their personality just by looking at a few photos and reading a couple of prompts. Depending on where you live, dating apps can either be booming with a variety of bachelors and bachelorettes or rather dry.

Since our society has emerged social media in all aspects of our lives, there is no surprise that social media has become a powerful tool when it comes to finding your match. However, I still think it is quite bizarre that our society deems liking someone’s Instagram post from a few years ago as an effective way of flirting and letting someone know that you are interested in them. 

Validation without any actual commitment or in-person communication is what is normalized with online dating. And as an extrovert who feeds off other people’s energy, dating apps just simply don’t work for me. I find it very rare that I would actually give the time and effort to meet up with someone in real life over a few liked photos and a lazy late-night conversation. Yet, I still have the apps downloaded just for the insight knowing some stranger thinks I’m attractive enough to swipe on. I think many enjoy online dating apps for pure entertainment purposes. 

Then there is the other side of dating apps where many will be brutally honest about their intentions. I call this “If you’re not down to clown, get out of town,” because many will unmatch with you if your intentions don’t align. To that I would say is equivalent to a guy calling you ugly after you refuse to give him your phone number.

Although it might work for some, unless you are actually committed to the idea of finding your soulmate online, I’d stick to working on yourself rather than wasting time scrolling.

Write to Julia Lin at

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