Data from a recent survey Carpenter and McEwan, of college students shows that in this sample, the top three reasons for using dating apps were, in order: If you browse through Tinder, which I have, it's quite the menagerie. A panoply of human splendor, if you will, but often poignant and lonely. At times reminiscent of a stroll through Amsterdam's Red Light District, not in terms of literal financial transactions, but in the sense of a candidly sexual department store window display — mass objectification.
One gets the subtle hint that it is easy to find a lover, take-out or delivery. More recently, researchers sought to clarify what ingredients go into hooking-up on Tinder Sevi et al. In this study, researchers measured disgust using the Three Domain Disgust Scale, rating items from "not disgusting at all" to "extremely disgusting". Sociosexual orientation was estimated using the Revised Sociosexual Orientation Inventory, using subscales for Behavior, Attitude and Desire e.
Finally, they estimated different motives for using Tinder with the aptly named "Measure of Tinder Motivations", looking at the aforementioned factors of love, casual sex, ease of communication, self-worth validation, thrill of excitement and trendiness.
However, analyzing the data for men and women separately, an interesting difference emerged: Notably, for women, lower sexual disgust predicted higher sociosexuality, but only as a secondary effect - when they controlled for sociosexuality, difference in sexual disgust were not significant. Disgust is thought to serve an evolutionary role. In the case of sexual behavior, disgust may improve mate selection and reduce risk e.
Men are, on average, higher risk takers than women, and it makes sense that higher levels of disgust would be associated with lower motivation for casual sex.
The study authors hypothesize that women who use Tinder may have lower sexual disgust sensitivity in the first place, leading to a biased sample. In other words, the authors wonder if women on Tinder are on average less disgusted by sex than women in general, suggesting that Tinder users may be a self-selected sample of women who are less disgusted by sex, and consequently more sex positive — and in turn, more likely to engage in casual sex.
Another factor may be how attractive one's photos are — men take more risks when shown more attractive photos, and online dating users are inclined to post their "best" most attractive photos. Evidence-based dating sounds funny to the ear, but more and more research is coming to inform the way dating apps work, and this is the advent of big data.
Real-time dating apps like Tinder intensify the interpersonal dating situation by rewarding impulsive behaviors, given the expectation of immediate gratification delivering casual sex quickly and geographically conveniently essentially rewarding impulsivity, which can be functional and dysfunctional. Since disgust is great at putting the brakes on impulsivity, the absence of disgust as a main factor in this sample of women on Tinder suggests that there may be less hesitation to engage in a hook-up.
Alcohol and other drugs , often a part of casual sex as well as traditional courtship in many cases, further reduce impulse control and play a role in hook-ups. If you are looking for casual sex on Tinder, you might consider reducing your sexual disgust sensitivity and increasing your sociosexual comfort level — otherwise, you could end up with a bad hangover, emotionally and possibly literally.
If you are looking for something more enduring, meeting at social events, and via friends and family, are still the main ways that people meet and stay together. Regardless, for your own peace of mind, be clear about your own motivations and desires when dating — whether using traditional or real-time dating apps, or meeting in person.
You can then make informed choices about how to position yourself no pun intended and what avenues to use to meet folks to best achieve your relationship goals. The players of micro-dating: Peer-Reviewed Journal on the Internet, Vol. A first look at user activity on tinder. Exploring the hook-up app: Low sexual disgust and high sociosexuality predict motivation to use Tinder for casual sex. Personality and Individual Differences, April