Why do teens use Tinder?

Simone Westerlund and Thomas Davenport

They say chivalry is dead. The Tinder dating app does a lot of business because of such chivalrous voids in modern courtship. In all seriousness, there are a lot of high schoolers among us that are on the dating app, Tinder. But why? Do high schoolers believe that they will find their soulmate on Tinder, or is it just another way to kill time? 

DISCLAIMER:  Tinder states in their guidelines that the minimum age requirement is 18 years old, and since some of the Tinder users that we interviewed disregarded that rule, they have identified themselves anonymously.

“I think high schoolers use Tinder because they are teenagers. They are always looking for something illegal, or something to push the boundaries, that’s what they do,” Mr. Schang said. Calvin Reinholtz (11) believes that underage kids use tinder to, “fulfill their sexual desires.”

An Anonymous Source (1) started using Tinder because, “I felt like it was a convenient way to meet new people and I was tired of going through the same pool I have had since elementary school. I’ve kind of stopped using it because the connections didn’t feel genuine, but it was still fun to mess around.” Anonymous Source (1) said. “In terms of being underage, I have had some difficulty. It’s mostly people just wanting to respect their own boundaries. I was banned once because I had my real age in the profile.” On the bright side, Anonymous Source (1) enjoyed seeing ‘pretty’ people, and thought it was a good way to make friends. 

Thomas Kanenaga (12) has chosen to identify himself, as he didn’t use the app until after he turned 18. “I used Tinder to meet new people, and experience everything I can out of life,” Kanenaga (12) said. “I like the convenience factor, but I don’t like the ugly people.”

Kaya Sherwood-Bally (12), also started using Tinder once she came of age. “I originally used it just because I wanted to see what would happen and see what kind of weirdos that would be on there, and what messages I would get. I wasn’t doing it to look for anything, just for fun. It was a social experiment. Oh, and I was of age by the time I started using it,” Sherwood-Bally (12) said. “I guess I like how you have a really diverse group of people and you really can meet anyone. I don’t like a lot about it to be honest. It was a very ingenuine experience, people are just looking to hook-up. It made me uncomfortable to have 25 year old men trying to have sex with me.”

Anonymous Source (2) spoke on his choice to start using Tinder. “It was a mix between a joke and an inquiry, and then I deleted it after about 10 hours. Tinder essentially is the concept of being judged and judging is unjust based off of surface impressions.”

It’s hard to say whether underage Tinder users actually benefit from the platform or not. Mr. Schang more spoke on what he thought of the platform, “To be honest, I don’t know a lot. My niece who at the time who was in her mid 20s met her husband to be on a dating app, and they are great together. I was a little skeptical at first but they get along so well. That changed my mind about dating sites, but to me it [Tinder] sounds a little more sketchy, It doesn’t sound like a healthy approach,” said Schang. “If I got the chance to speak to underage Tinder users I would say, “Stop it right now. You are not ready and when you get older, use a more appropriate website. Get offline, go meet people, and be out in the world, whatever that means for you,” said Schang.

Santa Claus’ fake tinder profile.