But like I said, getting a date off these apps is like pulling teeth. I've reverted to asking girls out in person at coffee shops, social gatherings, etc. Even if you get rejected, it at least makes for a good story.
Good on you for talking to girls directly, that really is the way to go. Super hot women don't tend to bother with online dating, and if you can approach confidently you'll be able to land much hotter women in person than online anyhow.
First, there's a clear (and artificial) skewing of supply-demand curves. There are probably like 30 (active) guys for every 1 (active) girl on these apps (looking at you, Tinder). This creates an imbalance where women are incredibly selective while men end up being incredibly non-selective (e.g. swipe right on everything). Clearly, this needs to be addressed -- this "marketplace" is a sham.
Second of all, a lot of women (but also men) use dating apps to increase their social following (be it Snapchat or Instagram). This probably only pertains to people in their 20s or 30s, but it's a huge problem when trying to seriously find someone to date.
Third -- the botpocalypse. About 70% of my matches on Tinder this past year (I actually quit all dating apps around 4 months ago) have been bots. Not sure if this is a tractable problem, but after a while, it just gets old. At this point, matching with bots is a meme on /r/Tinder, for example.
Fourth, there needs to be an in-app incentive to meet in real life. I feel that my generation (millennials) are kind of broken. I blow people's minds when I tell them that I work remotely at a coffee shop and started making friends with people there, hanging out, etc. In other words, we absolutely suck at real-life social interaction. So we need these apps to "nudge" in the right direction. A potential solution would be a cross between a meetup and a date.
Fifth, I think hookup culture really is starting to show its dark side. Tinder was very popular as a hookup app a few years ago, but nowadays it's more or less abandoned. People actually want deep and long-lasting connections. None of the apps out there really attempt to solve this. It's a tough problem to solve because building a relationship (like building a friendship) takes time.
Anyway, these are some issues I have with dating apps off the top of my head. I will say that it also probably doesn't help that I live in LA, which is a pretty superficial city to begin with. But the women are gorgeous, so I probably shouldn't complain :)
What makes it artificial?
Also, there's strong evidence that roughly twice as many women have reproduced than men across human history , so if we're reducing it to a number game women have always had the ability to be more picky than guys.
What's different today is Tinder/OLD let's them access a much larger area, whereas in the past they would have to find a partner within their local community. Dating apps may look unfair on paper but they're just a more efficient dating market than in times past.
So to sum up my point, I'm struggling to see a solution here. Human nature can't be rewritten, no matter how hard we try.
> ... they're just a more efficient dating market than in times past.
This might be true if women were actually going on dates and starting relationships. Except that no one is. We are a lonely bunch.
You could write an algorithm that subtly punishes women for being too picky and at the same time punishes men for being unselective (only swiping right, then filtering later). Of course, as soon as it comes out that you are rebalancing the market that way no one will use your app anymore, but it would be a theoretical way to bring the numbers closer together.
Sounds like the dating rules of most Patriarch societies.
Women who aren't married at age X gets a social penalty.
Men who marry are rewarded by social rewards.
The USA has thankfully left the shackles of Patriarchy and has enabled the liberation of women and women's desires.
In this world of female first, women get to choose freely from the entire pool of men, and can dispose of them by a swipe of their finger. Should the woman like a child, there is plenty of DNA to choose from, even to be pregnant by insemination or IVF if she so desires.
You are experiencing Matriarchy in the 21th century. Welcome to the future.
I remember someone at HN posting a graph that showed that for something like 40 years the amount of singles reporting 'no sex within the last year' had been relatively equal (both men and women around 18%), but since the rise of Tinder et al men had shot up to 30% whereas women were still at 18%.
On an individual level I won't pass judgment on women for doing whatever they want, but on a societal level such a sea change in behavior and it's attached consequences does not seem healthy or stable.
Care to place any bets on what will happen?
Obviously I can't prove this but I'd bet the inability to get into an emotionally stable (or any) relationship is one of the contributing factors to soaring youth crime across the world. It's not the only one (economy, political divide) but it's a biggie.
I can do you one better: if you look at history, whenever a society had large contingents of single, young men with little chance of entering into a relationship, that society invariably eventually went to war. Since most big players in the world have become so economically intertwined this is not really viable anymore, so yes, I'd say it is very possibly a factor.
> Care to place any bets on what will happen?
On the short-to-mid term? Nothing. Tech is vastly outpacing our ability as society to adapt. You see this with issues of privacy as well.
Long term? The pendulum probably swings in the other direction hard.
Maybe men everywhere decide to adopt the Japanese way: with the insane pressure on young men there to perform in all aspects of life, a lot of them simply opt out of dating (which ultimately leaves women without relationships).
Or maybe realistic, AI-driven sexbots become a thing: if you don't want kids and don't need a relationship, why deal with all the extraneous stuff? This again leaves women out in the cold.
To be clear: I wouldn't celebrate such a thing. We'd lose something very essential about ourselves if our whole dance of courtship and sex is permanently reduced to dating apps and sexbots.
But to continue, we're in a weird state of flux vis-à-vis male/female interaction. For example, most women prefer to date 'up' (having a good job on your dating profile leads to something like 85% more right swipes), but at the same time most universities are 40/60 men/women, plus women below 30 outearn their male peers. Obviously those two things are fairly at odds with each other.
You can also ask questions like: why are high schools still plastered in posters encouraging women to attend university when the numbers are already skewed? Surely, if back in the 90s 60/40 men/women was bad, the reverse should also be bad? Where is the promotional material to get more men into universities? Where are the special men-only scholarships? Or the effort to combat the male pay gap below 30?
Apologies for the long response- the overarching subject is something I take quite to heart.
So my hunch was sorta correct? We've gone from most people marrying somebody they meet organically to "here's a list of candidates within N and their job title" which has massively magnified that particular behaviour.
> Apologies for the long response- the overarching subject is something I take quite to heart.
No problem! I was hoping for a response this interesting.
My idea is that at some point after the initial match, both users put in $5. Doing so gets them a coupon/something worth $15 at an app-chosen local restaurant or bar. If one person does not show up, the other person gets $7.
(The important part is those prices relative to each other rather than those specific values.)
The way this would make money is to make deals with the local restaurant/bar so it doesn't cost the company running the app $15 to send the potential couple to a venue (restaurants might pay to have the customers).
Amusingly, venues took issue with people shagging in the loos and one wondered if it was actually a front for prostitution.
Either way, I've thought many (many) times of making a dating app and running a pilot/MVP on UCLA's campus. But I think dating apps have been (justifiably) getting such a bad rap lately, it'll be too hard to get initial traction.
Of course, there's still plenty of potential for abuse or simply misuse, but not really any more than any personal relationship. This strikes me as being basically that meetup/date cross you suggested.
>"First, there's a clear (and artificial) skewing of supply-demand curves. There are probably like 30 (active) guys for every 1 (active) girl on these apps (looking at you, Tinder)"
Are there sources you could share that support this?
There are a lot more, this is one of the first that popped up on Google. I don't think the article even accounts for account activity, or the numbers would look much worse.
Turn that around completely. Have users put in effort in being found.
I doubt that would get much attention to "disrupt" the market
Thing is, for the beautiful people, all they need is one really good picture, and a pizza emoji as their profile text, and they're all set. Unless you hide profile pictures (which tbf, okcupid tried for a brief second) I don't see a way to change that.
Besides that I found it pretty easy to consistently get a date or two a week with Tinder, but it was a chore in terms of time spent to do so. It also resulted in a lot of not quite right matches that I felt mixed about, like people who were amazing but didn't really have compatible (with me) life directions/goals.
Bumble was the most useless dating site I tried. Everything seemed to be more about image and posturing than actually dating.
At the time okCupid was in the midst of changing from a decent site for people who still used desktops and web browsers and liked longform text to a bad version of tinder, which I assume it is now.
Assume things have changed a bit by now so of course YMMV.
I mean, just thought it was weird for a complete stranger to recommend to another complete stranger a gay hookup app for men...
If you're looking for dating, OKCupid works well, but you need to work fast. Arrange a meetup/coffee date within 3-4 messages. If you talk to someone for weeks without meeting, it's unlikely you'll get anywhere.
I wouldn't recommend Tinder to anyone though.