Tinder makes users less likely to commit to relationships, experts warn

There is concern contemporary online dating has reduced the ability of people to devote themselves to one partner

May Bulman
Tuesday 12 January 2016 16:33 GMT
The average couple in Britain will get married three years after mee
The average couple in Britain will get married three years after mee (Getty Images)

Popular dating apps are making their users less able to commit in relationships, experts have warned.

While the use of apps such as Tinder and Bumble has surged in recent years, there is growing concern that contemporary online dating has reduced the ability of users to devote themselves to one partner due to the shopping-like experience it creates.

“The thing with online dating and Tinder in particular is that it’s making people less likely to commit,” said journalist and Tinder user Siam Goorwich on Radio 4’s The Long View programme.

“Users always think there’s something better out there, so even in the early stages of relationships, people are still going on Tinder and still looking for new partners or a better partner”.

On the same programme, dating scholar Zoe Strimpol compared modern dating apps with shopping. “When you buy something, it’s novel and when you’re done with it you dispose of it,” she said.

“There’s been widespread concern that web apps like Tinder have fostered that exact kind of disposability.”

With the ability to flick through a stream of other potential matches at the tip of our finger tips, the sentiment that ‘the grass is always greener’ rings true, with nothing to stop users from scanning Tinder, even in the early days of a relationship, to check there isn’t a better option out there.

Charly Lester, who runs the UK dating awards, believes that users are beginning to recognise this. “People are getting more selective again,” she said.

“Tinder has given people a broad range of choices and now people are trying to pare back those choices with more niche dating apps.”

But Goorwich is less optimistic about online dating, and believes that to win romance back, dating needs to start off-screen.

“My ideal would be to meet someone, shock horror, in real life, where you can make a real connection with them,” she said on the programme.

“I feel quite wary of dating sites and I think a lot of people are feeling the same. We’ve given them a go, they haven’t worked.”

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