Reported by Lena Alsayegh
Phone apps such as Tinder and Cuddlr have become popular over the last year, but their effects on real-world interpersonal interaction may not be beneficial in the long run.
Tinder markets itself as, “the fun way to connect with new and interesting people around you… a new way to express yourself and share with friends,” though it has become widely known less innocently as the hook-up app.
Cuddlr, on the other hand, rounds out the other side of the spectrum, intended for merely platonic hugging with strangers in your vicinity.
Couples and Sex Therapist Dr. David McKenzie sees relationship apps and online dating as modern tools that facilitate the dating process, but he also stresses proceeding with caution.
“What they’re leaving out is the essential part of conflict, of things that need to be worked out. They give a false impression of what it is to be in a living dynamic relationship,” McKenzie said.
Brooke Ancheta, an arts and sciences student, admitted that she had used Tinder, but that, “it’s really messed up.”
Ancheta added, “it’s kind of creepy that you just click yes or no [on a picture], it’s superficial.”
When asked what effect she thought such apps were having on relationships, she said, “there’s no such thing as a relationship anymore.”
Biology student Courtney Harvey echoed this view, “it’s really superficial.”
“Social media speeds up the [dating] process and cuts out a lot of important things,” Harvey said.
McKenzie explains that when two people come together, there will inevitably be conflict.
“A living dynamic relationship means two people come together with two different world views, two sets of genes, two value systems,” and this is not reflected by the applications, McKenzie said.
He went on to specifically address apps like Tinder, which focus on casual encounters, “in any situation where there’s hooking up, in the long run it’s women who lose,” he explained, because, “it’s usually people who want shallow, short-term, meaningless relationships – it’s an emotional wasteland.”