Are Tinder, OKCupid, and Bumble a Waste of Time?

Misconceptions-On-People-Who-Use-Online-Dating-Sites

 

Name: OKWTF

Question: Is OKCupid finished as a dating site?  I reactivated after a two year hiatus and I’ve noticed the site has taken a dramatic downhill turn.  I was using Tinder and Bumble but I didn’t feel those apps gave me enough space to flesh out my personality (and learn more about a potential match).  Not to mention I feel the guys on Tinder come off too strong about looking for sex and the guys on Bumble don’t really seem interested in meeting someone like me.  I figured OKCupid worked well in the past but it seems they’ve adopted all the negatives of the swipe apps with none of the benefits. If this is the case should I even bother with OKCupid?  A little about me: I’m attractive, active, working on a STEM PhD, and fun loving with a wide range of hobbies.
Age: 27

I don’t think you should dismiss any of the sites or apps completely.  You have to go where the people are. The trick is to use them to your advantage.

OKCupid

Like you said, OKCupid provides users with an opportunity to create a more well-rounded impression. Fill out all the sections and basic details and use the filters.  Answer at least 100 questions, avoiding anything inflammatory or subjective i.e. questions about physical preferences or anything too politically charged. Post at least 3 photos – headshot, body shot,  and social shot – all of which that clearly display your face and body unobstructed. Opt to use the Incognito feature so that the only people who can see your profile are people you like or message. That will eliminate the abundance of inappropriate messages you’ll receive.

When doing a search, be sure to read the whole profile – questions and all. I always look to see if men select their preferred body type or if they believe “fat” people can’t be attractive or if they insist their match not be even slightly over-weight.

 

Tinder

I 100% agree that guys on Tinder are insanely aggressive about looking for sex.  Almost every man I’ve matched with in the last few weeks has made inappropriate sexual comments. You know one way to avoid those guys? Don’t swipe right on anyone that doesn’t fill out their bio sufficiently or at all. Another way to avoid them? Include a quick line about how tourists should swipe left and that any inappropriate sexual comments will result in an unmatch. Is that going to stop people from being aggressive? No, but those two sentence do make it clear you’re taking Tinder seriously and aren’t just there for attention or to hook-up. Some men aren’t going to bother to read your bio. They’ll reveal themselves quickly and you can unmatch them.

 

Bumble

I am torn about recommending this app in any way. You allude to why in your letter when you said you don’t think the men on there are interested in you. I do feel as though Bumble is somewhat elitist in that way. It’s for men and women looking for people with pedigrees. However, you don’t know that every guy on there thinks like that. There are no rules when it comes to attraction. Women think they know what men find attractive, but they don’t. (And vice versa.) Don’t assume that no man on there will find you interesting and attractive. However, you should be aware that Bumble has an over-abundance of ghost profiles. Users delete the app from their phone but their profile remains on the app. At least with OKCupid, you can see the last time a user was active and logged on. In addition to providing prompts for people to write their profile, the ability to filter by log on date is the second best reason to use OKCupid.

 

With Tinder and Bumble, and probably even OKCupid, users no longer have to craft 500 word introduction paragraphs. We are being conditioned to require less and less information before determining possible attraction. Therefore, you can now get away with being brief and succinct. My bios for Tinder and Bumble are a series of one or two words.

Writer. Small business owner. Interval trainer. Liberal. Manhattan dweller. Wine drinker. ASPCA supporter. NPR listener. No kids, never married. Reserved in public, bawdy in private.

That may look lazy or brief, but it actually tells you quite a bit about me.  It gives my profession, where I live, some of my interests, and explains that there’s no ex-husband or kids in the picture.  Readers will infer that I’m in shape and like working out, that I’m compassionate, that I like sex,  and that I’m intelligent. That and a few pictures is all you need.

 

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23 Responses to “Are Tinder, OKCupid, and Bumble a Waste of Time?”

  1. Tao-dude Says:

    I think online dating has degenerated into a place where it’s really hard to make any lasting connections because everything starts from a vain and shallow place. Also folks have a bloated sense of self-worth: the unemployed ok looking individual feels they deserve a hot gainfully employed person and then when it fails after a few weeks if it makes it that far there’s a sense of disappointment.

    Frankly you’d have better luck at one of Moxie’s events then with the online apps which have become a wasteland of lost recycled dreams. These apps are mostly for hookups and hit and run type relationships – I know nobody personally whose met a mate on the apps.

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  2. TTFK Says:

    It shocks me how so many people never consider “going out and doing new, different things or pursuing hobbies and just interact with as many people as possible around them” to meet new people anymore. Maybe I’m just getting old…

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    • Nia Says:

      Well, perhaps they, like myself, have tried that, and found that most of those new, interesting people are married, gay (or straight, depending) not interested in them, or incompatible in some way.
      Online dating has one big advantage: you can theoretically screen *ahead of time* for major deal breakers, instead of meeting a cute person “out and about” and then finding out they don’t want kids, they are un-or under-employed, they smoke weed every day starting at 6 AM, or whatever the deal breakers are.
      At my age, 38, it is *exponentially* harder to find single men “around”. When I was in my 20’s, I met men left and right: at work, at school, at bars, through friends, hell, on the literal street. That pretty much came to a screeching halt when, at age 34, I returned to the US from Asia and found oops, all those guys? They’re now married with kids.

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  3. JB Says:

    I don’t know what OK Cupid ‘used to be’ – ie, before a year ago – but in recent months it’s been overrun with ho’s. Or, more likely, webmasters in Serbia or something who grab a single striking photo of a woman from somewhere, construct a halting and borderline comic statement about loving her man from some boilerplate, and voila, ‘Sylvana’ has a profile. Is the end game extracting money from some lonely guy? Laughing at men who think they’re hitting it off with a gorgeous female? I don’t know, but it seems to have spread to eH as well.

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    • ATWYSingle Says:

      The number of fake profiles on OKC had tripled in the past year. Lots of widowers with 2 kids and guys in the army and many, many “god fearing” men. They all have one photo of an atypically good looking guy, but you can tell by the language and grammar in the profile that the guy in the pic is not the guy who wrote the profile.

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      • Yvonne Says:

        I’ve pulled suspicious photos into a Google image search, and quite a few have come up as a model, actor, successful businessman, etc. A couple have even come from another man’s LinkedIn profile.

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      • JayD Says:

        So is the case on Facebook. It is hard to comprehend how would anyone part with their money for these obvious scams, but the cost for barriers to entry of this type of “business” is next to nothing, they are all over the place.

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  4. Laura Says:

    The rule of thumb is that if you have a single picture of a very attractive person, that person is not you. And yeah, such profiles seem to be all over the place.

    I don’t think these websites are a complete waste of time. If you cut them out, you’re limiting your options. But it’s clear that people are putting less and less real effort and a lot of them are giving off a strong burnout vibe. It’s important to find a balance between being overly invested, which inevitably leads to frustration, and being too disengaged which just pust you in the same boat with all the flakes lingering around wasting everyone’s time.

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  5. Nia Says:

    I have found that in the last year (or in the 2 years I was off online dating, not sure which) Tinder has changed a LOT. Whereas in 2014 I was able to meet a handful of cute, nice, reasonable guys for dates or more, now I can’t even barely get one sentence out before the crude sexual come on’s start.
    Bumble is slightly better, but I’ve noticed that just in general it seems like people are very impatient of the slightest thing, not invested, entitled, overly sexual way too fast, and above all THE SAME F_ING PERSON OVER AND OVER.

    He’s 43. He’s either recently divorced or “just checking this out”. He’s a “Project Manager” or if it’s Bumble, some over the top profession like Neurosurgeon. His pictures are:
    Him with some woman wayyyyyyy hotter than me, only half cropped out of the frame
    Him with a pet, most likely a dog
    Him in a group, where either the guys all look the same and it’s a “Chadsplosion” OR everyone is absolutely hammered
    Him on some goddamn mountain top, taken from a half mile away, his face covered with ski goggles
    Him in a marathon, looking like he’s in agony
    Him “relaxing” lakeside or on a deck with a brew, usually in a baseball hat

    His name is Andrew. His profile text is usually:

    “Hey, I’m laid back and I love to have fun. Ask me anything you want to know. I guess I have to get a selfie in the bathroom or holding a fish, haha! I’m fun, single, no kids, divorced for 4 years now, and housebroken” [why do so many men say “potty trained” or “housebroken”? it’s so gross]
    “NYC>DFW>SFC>DEN>HWI”
    If they’re 5’11” and over:
    “I’m 6’1″ because apparently we’re all shallow here/since I guess that’s important.”
    If they’re 5’10” and under: no mention of height.
    “Looking for a fit, active, athletic, fun, girl to share adventures with”
    “Deep quote/song lyric”
    Instagram handle

    SAVE ME FROM THIS MADNESS.

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    • K Says:

      Yeah Tinder feels particular bad right now. Although sometimes it’s just a slow month and then you end up meeting normal people again…

      Lately it feels like a party where the host told half the guests it would be nice sit down dinner with wine pairings and told the other half it would be a raging kegger (showing up drunk preferred).

      The immediate creepy messages I almost appreciate because they are so transparent. It’s the guys that chat back and forth normally for a few messages and then drop the sexual innuendos that annoy me.

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      • Nia Says:

        Oh my god me too! It’s almost worse! The sense of let down, anger, frustration, and disappointment when you find out that Mr. Normal is really Mr. Sex Troll is so intense!
        And you wind up questioning everything: is it me? is it my pictures? should I even be doing this? and so on!

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  6. AnnieNonymous Says:

    People have managed to find relationships on Tinder, but it’s primarily a hookup app and I think it’s strange when people act like it’s not. You’re going to get people on there looking for sex – it’s what the app is for. It’s not like horny dudes are going to take it seriously when someone says, “No really, it’s for serious dating too!”

    Bumble is targeted to a deliberately curated and small pool of people. You can’t even download the app on older iPhone models/operating systems. There are a lot of people out there rocking their iPhone 5’s and 6’s who couldn’t use Bumble even if they wanted to. The app would be a lot less frustrating if they’d release a more lo-fi version that allowed more people to use it. As it is, in my region there’s literally no one on it.

    OKC is an abandoned amusement park. I’m embarrassed to admit that I occasionally still look at it. People think it’s lame so there aren’t any new people signing up.

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    • Nia Says:

      I politely disagree on Tinder. Tinder has a reputation for being for casual sex, but a *huge* majority of male profiles that I saw specifically, explicitly said “No hookups” or “I’m not here to hookup, don’t ask.”
      I even wrote in to Moxie about it because I found it so baffling.Were so many women asking men directly for sex that it became necessary to say upfront “no hookups”? Most likely not. It’s more that Tinder has a rep of being for hookups, and those guys knew it, and whether or not it was true, they felt they had better odds saying “no hookups”.
      Now, Tinder may in fact BE for hookups, but the marketing materials and the app itself say things like “meet new people” and similar.

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      • K Says:

        Also I wasn’t expressing shock that some people would send sexual messages on Tinder. In the beginning most people thought of it as hookup app, yet if you wrote a nice profile, filtered out certain people, the creepy messages were a not so frequent occurence. Lately though, it feels like an uptick in the sexual messages. Especially from the guys that write normal messages first then wham some odd sexual question. Then they get mad if you stop responding.

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      • AnnieNonymous Says:

        Thing is, it doesn’t matter what the marketing says. If people use it for hookups, that’s what it ends up being for. Insisting otherwise is look walking into a room of poker players and demanding that they start playing euchre instead. People aren’t going to change their behavior en masse because someone shows up all, “But you guys didn’t read the directions properly!”

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        • DrivingMeNutes Says:

          No app that expects women to participate can be a “just hook up” app because no women would attend.

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        • Nia Says:

          Well…okay, but as I said, dozens, maybe hundreds of men are saying “No hookups”. I’m not surprised at the sexual come on’s I’m *angry*. Don’t say explicitly “no hookups” and make me think you’re normal and a decent guy and then be all like “what’s up bubble butt” (shout out Zaire!) or “so, you kinky or what?” ugh.
          I would be more okay with guys who were like “here for a hookup. get at me on kik”–I swipe left! Guys who are like “No hookups! Not here for that” and then be like “Hey sexy, you like to party? Nice tits.” GTFO out of here with that shit.

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  7. Jay Says:

    “Writer. Small business owner. Interval trainer. Liberal. Manhattan dweller. Wine drinker. ASPCA supporter. NPR listener. No kids, never married. Reserved in public, bawdy in private.”

    I love that bio. It gives enough background to identify what parts of one’s lifestyle, values, and interests are compatible, and the subtle hint of sexuality is the closer. The straight-to-the-point aspect also gives the impression that this is a person who has been there, done that, and knows what she wants now.

    When I was in my late 20s and early 30’s, I came across a few bios like this while online dating. I liked all these profiles for reasons I just mentioned. I like confident women. However, I never got any responses.

    For one thing, that level of experience–the been there, done that–didn’t match with the kind of life experince that I projected.

    For another, I think this bio tends to atract more assertive men, which I am sure looked better than me and would have made for great dating and sex at the start, but probably turn out to be not the type of match the woman sought in the first place, because men who I know that are like that are pretty non-committal.

    The bottom line is that this is an appealing profile, but I think the kind of matches it sets up can be a crap shoot.

    Thoughts?

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  8. Jay Says:

    As for OKWTF, “attractive, active, working on a STEM PhD, and fun loving with a wide range of hobbies” and 27 years old sounds pretty appealing to me.

    When I was at that point in my life, there were lots of guys doing STEM PhD’s that were at a loss for finding women. I am surprised that she hasn’t found anyone in that circle, not necessarily in her deparment, but on campus. Ok, I get it: she doesn’t want to date a classmate or someone in the same field. Even off campus, I know for a fact that there are plenty of men interested in that kind of bio. But if she is looking for someone vastly outside of her group, she will have to overcome the usual expectations and judgements people have.

    Or, is it because OKWTF is reaching beyond her dating league? If she’s looking on Bumble, any real guy on there is looking for a runway model or someone else that fits, as Moxie says, a certain social “pedigree.” STEM PhD isn’t what they are seeking.

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    • Zaire Says:

      Hey Jay, I’m the letter writer. I think you’re right. I don’t want to date a classmate. Personally, I like a guy who is also in STEM along the lines of engineering, computer science, physics etc. in fact I tend to get along pretty well with those kinds of guys. A lot of guys on Bumble are in law, finance, or MDs; jobs with certain social expectations for lack of a better term. I feel these guys are looking for someone who lives up to the projected image of what a lawyer or MD should be dating (a hot chick not a very cute/smart one).

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  9. Mel Says:

    Moxie, how do you use Incognito on OKCupid? I looked for it last time I was on but couldn’t find it. I remember hearing it was a paid feature. Is it part of A list? I googled it and all I got were old answers. Is it still a thing?

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