I Downloaded Hinge So You Don’t Have To

Graphid by Cynthia Cui.

I find dating apps to be one of the most intriguing phenomena of the twenty-first century. No matter how feminist or liberating they ostensibly appear, their very existence essentially perpetuates snap judgements and superficial conversations. As a huge fan of both of these things, I immediately downloaded a new dating app, Hinge, after hearing about it from a few of my friends. Hinge markets itself as “not like those other apps” because it contains mandatory conversations prompts that all users must fill out, ranging from favorite movies to ideal dates. Although the app uses these prompts to make potential matches seem more interesting, my experiment with Hinge demonstrates that people are even more bland than we thought.

I’ve come to use dating apps less as a way to actually meet people, and more so as a research tool through which I can familiarize myself with and analyze the Montreal male dating app pool. After exhausting Montreal’s Tinder and Bumble selection, I’ve confirmed that a lot of men who use these apps are pretty boring. If I had a dollar for every time I flipped through a profile mentioning his love of dogs, vowing to cook a meal for me, or demanding that I swipe left if I don’t like The Office, I would be able to single-handedly fund the McLennan renovation plan. 

After spending some time on the app, I’ve compiled what I believe to be some of the most representative and sometimes cringe-worthy responses I’ve encountered. 

A social cause I care about:

Baby Yoda and Saving Animals

I admire this guy’s bold choice to lead in without an actual social cause, followed by an extremely vague social cause. Responses like this are pretty clearly a guy’s attempt to seem at least relatively funny and meme-aware, while also being “aww”-worthy by mentioning animals.

I’d fall for you if…

You Think Star Wars is better than Harry Potter

This particular response especially captivates me. The format implies that this suitor is trying to find someone who is “not like the other girls,” but the references are generic enough that it could attract just about anyone. I have to ask, why does the comparison of Harry Potter to Star Wars need to be made? What do these two franchises even have in common? What does it say about me if I, theoretically, enjoyed Harry Potter just a little bit more than Star Wars? Is it really over, then?

Which of these two date ideas sounds better?

1. Getting wine drunk at 6pm, eating chicken nuggets, and petting every stranger’s dog.

2. Mini putt followed by unlimited tequila shots.

While the prospect of binge-drinking with a complete stranger is promising, I was most intrigued by the first proposition, which offers a seemingly nauseating combination of wine and gourmet poultry succeeded by the petting of animals . I have still not cracked why so many men (or women) on dating apps still believe that mentioning their love for dogs will make them stand out. Sure, I love dogs, too, but we’ve all seen enough of these to know that while we share this wholesome passion in common, you will still drunk text us at 3 AM after we’ve ghosted you.

A shower thought I recently had:

What was the first guy to milk a cow trying to do?

You would be amazed at how many times I saw this exact response. Isn’t it crazy how they all seem to have the same shower thought? It’s almost as if this shower thought never happened at all, and instead they saw this on Reddit in 2012.

The hallmark of a good relationship is…

Sharing a Netflix account.

Oh, really? Curious, I asked for his Netflix password. He replied saying, “let’s meet first” – I’m not going to lie, that was pretty smooth.

In the growing world of online dating, Tinder and Bumble have succeeded in giving boring guys a chance to shine by letting them rely almost entirely on their photos and a one-sentence description. Hinge tempts to change this through personalized prompts. Yes, Hinge may miss the mark on making potential matches actually seem more interesting. However, perhaps this type of app is exactly what we need: a dating platform that allows users to tell right away who lacks enough personality to come up with a witty response to a simple prompt. And if you don’t like it, just re-watch The Office and tell me how much you like dogs. 

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