- Why I'm giving up on online dating
- Online Dating is Dead. Long Live Online Dating | HuffPost
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Despite the hand-wringing that online dating is making people more shallow, less empathetic, or encouraging an objectifying culture of empty hookups and sub-par sex, it's a mistake to blame technology for our social shortcomings. If there's one thing technology is great for, it's amplifying the patterns that are already there. Online dating simply accelerates and puts a magnifying glass on larger social dynamics. To dismiss the possibility of positive outcomes through online dating because of a few bad apples is like saying that, because there are trolls, we should toss out the entire Internet.
There is a beautiful potential to online introductions. The possibility of connecting with someone you may have never encountered through your regular daily habits, who yet somehow sees the world the way you do and appreciates you for who you are is a tantalizing goal, and it's something that actually happens. The catch is that, at present, most of the paths toward this beautiful potential are littered with poop-piles. Online harassment is a big, stinky poop-pile, as is the reduction of people to photos that gives us that alienating "shopping for humans" feeling.
When faced with poop-filled paths, we have a decision to make.
Why I'm giving up on online dating
Should we hold our noses and hope for the best? Or should we take what we have learned and create a new path? Siren is designed by artists and creatives who know in every fiber of our being that sometimes you just need to create new paths. As makers we know how to create. As artists, we know how to set the tone and harness community energy. Each space, physical or digital, has its own internal codes of behavior and standards, and we make social contracts with each other.
Online Dating is Dead. Long Live Online Dating | HuffPost
If you want a community with less crap, why not ask people not to litter? You create a well-lit, open-ended space for people to navigate comfortably. You pick up the garbage, you make it safe, and you keep it interesting because you care about the people who use your path.
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I cannot convey how much joy it brings the Siren team to create a platform that resists the swipes, that asks questions where judgment is less important than perspective, that believes dignity for individuals resides in some space between the words. In the IRL dating world, two people are often acquainted, at least in some loose capacity, before dating, which creates, if not a respect, then a fear of consequences. Online daters have never been burdened by this.
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I have never had any success really connecting to someone in the span of two glasses of chardonnay. I like to think both myself and the other party would feel more invested if we were introduced by a friend from camp.
The amount of effort single people put into online dating has moved from excitement over a shiny new toy to people who can barely be bothered to move their thumb an inch to the right or left. Where once I had an inbox full of messages to respond to, now I just have an endless scroll of unresponded-to attempts at starting a conversation. What was the point in the right swipe, I wonder? The date tally is even more shameful.
I used to go on at least a date a month. I went on three dates last year. The conversations that do begin in an app fizzle out after mere moments.
The only way I actually meet a human being in real life is if I put forth percent of the effort. Suggest we meet, suggest a date, suggest a place, suggest a time.
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But no one does. Are we exhausted, over it, or is this just not a thing anymore? Instead, I should have just been myself. I should have just followed my instincts the first, not the 50th time, a man on Tinder asked me to do something overtly sexual, if not offensive, the very first time he sent me a message. I should have done what I knew was right after flipping through my first 1, faces without so much as meeting for coffee. The voice in the back of my head was right all along.