The Trials and Tribulations of Tinder: A Conor Murphy Story

Introduction/About Tinder:

For this project we were assigned to break a “social norm”. A social norm being “an expected form of behavior in a given situation”, essentially how we act in a given situation.

For my project I decided to use the social media app Tinder. Defined by their website Tinder is “Tinder is a dating mobile app. Using geolocation technology, users can set a specific radius, and they will have the option to match with anyone that is within that distance.” But to most people who use the app it is simply just a way to “meet” new people. It connects to your Facebook in order to access your pictures and other basic information. Once you have set up a profile you can choose to swipe right or left on others profiles. Swipe left means your interested in that person..swipe left not so much. If 2 people swipe right on each other you are matched and now are able to chat one another.

The overall point of tinder is to match with someone with the hopes of possibly sparking something romantically with them. I went with the approach of talking to these girls and casually bringing up the fact that I have a girlfriend.

Profile: My profile consisted of several pictures with my “girlfriend”. I put in my bio as you can see “Looking to make some new friends!” with that actually being the truth, my intent was to “attempt” to make friends with these girls knowing I have a girlfriend.

Process:

In order to get matches you need to swipe right, and thats absolutely what I did. For several days I would swipe right for every girl I came across until Tinder told me I used all my allocated swipes for the day, which I was surprised that they had and then they offered me Tinder Plus and at 9.99 a month and after long hard consideration I just couldn’t get myself to fork over the 9.99 for such a useful app like Tinder…Anyways I received many matches over those days and I would chat them starting off conversations with a friendly Hey! or Whats up! something casual so I didnt come off as a creep right from the get go. I would go on having a normal conversation usually talking about what they were doing at the moment what school then went to ect. Then when I saw the time was fitting I would work in the fact that I have a girlfriend. The responses varied from not really carrying to blocking me completely on the app.

Results:

I am the green bubble in the following conversations.

The Spamer

This was one of my first matches and I was surprised because I did not even have to start the conversation! However I had to laugh when I saw what the person had said to me. Not really knowing whether or not this was a real person behind this I replied with something friendly. Her response was for me to join her in some chat room. Now knowing for sure this was spam I tried one last time to get a real response by bringing up the girlfriend, but unfourtunatley no response.

The “conversation ender”

This is an example of when me bringing up the fact I had a girlfriend scared them away by not responding.

The “Blocker”

In this case again it was a normal conversation until I mentioned the fact I had a girlfriend. She ends up “unmatching” from me. I guess she did not just want to try and be friends.

Analysis:

Overall I found the whole project very interesting, the idea of social norms is something that I never really openly thought about while on social media sites I just subconsciously knew that there are things you do and don’t do. This project made me step out of my comfort zone and do things I definitely would not do.

In reality this app is based off whether or not your attracted to the person that pops up on your phone. In my case I was just trying to be excited about meeting new potential friends in the area. However majority of the people that are using the app are just looking for a hook up. People became very confused even when I brought up the fact I had a girlfriend, I didn’t even get to the part of me asking them if we could just be friends.

Being put in these kinds of situations makes you think more about how big of a part social norms play into our lives. People become very weirded out when you break them. I believe that was the point of the project to realize that people who break these norms on a consistent basis our outcasted by the rest of society because of their differences.