The Best Dating Apps

The Best Dating Apps

Yeah, yeah, I know I’m a little old-school. I don’t think we can (or should) turn back the clock on dating and gender dynamics, but I do feel that our hyper-wired, instant gratification society has fostered unprecedented problems in dating.

Years ago, you’d meet someone you liked, you’d ask her out, and you’d see where things took you. It was rare to date more than one person simultaneously, because there wasn’t the volume or the opportunity. Online dating changed all that – and I took advantage. Suddenly, I had access to thousands of women, whom I was able to contact with a well-written profile and a handful of emails.

Why does dating suck? Because you go out with so many creeps. Why do you go out with so many creeps? Because you’re not screening them.

These days, online dating seems quaint. People don’t have time for things like profiles or emails. Basically we want to scroll through pictures and meet instantaneously. And so we do – and then complain about how much dating sucks. Why does dating suck? Because you go out with so many creeps. Why do you go out with so many creeps? Because you’re not screening them. Why are you not screening them? Because it takes time and you don’t want to take time – you just want to meet right away and see if there’s chemistry.

So while I am certainly not a fan of dating apps or GPS enabled tools that allow people to meet total strangers quicker, this trend isn’t going anywhere. And if you want to know which apps are best to meet a total stranger for a blind date without having even a conversation first, check out this piece from People magazine on the best phone-based dating apps.

Your thoughts, below, are always appreciated.

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Comments:

  1. 1
    Jenna

    I don’t use dating apps, just match.com, but it’s still a crapshoot. There was one guy who I seemed to really click with online in our emails and initial phone conversation. When we met, it was awful – one of the worst dates I’ve ever had. Another time, there was this guy whose whole profile was a joke and I only went out with him because he was hot – and after meeting in person, we clicked so much as people and had tons in common. So screening can improve your chances but it’s not perfect.

  2. 2
    Tracy

    What’s the difference in meeting someone organically or meeting up with them right away after encountering online? The guy you chatted up while buying your coffee at Starbucks and asked you out is a stranger. Before online dating became popular that’s how I use to meet most of the men I dated.   

    1. 2.1
      SparklingEmerald

      In my younger days, I met men everywhere I went.  Every party I went to, resulted in another party guest (male) asking for my phone #.  I met men through friends, not necessarily a set up, just hanging out with my friends.  I met guys at coffee shops, lunch counters, special interest classes, grocery shopping, on the train, etc.  During my “power years” (early 20’s) I never lacked for meeting men.  (I struggled with RELATIONSHIPs, but I always had plenty of dates)
      I realize that my age is a BIG factor in getting less attention IRL, but I wonder if it’s the proliferation of online dating has contributed to this as well ?  I wonder how many online daters, see someone IRL, and don’t even bother to approach them, because they would rather look online ?  Just like NO ONE applies for a job by sending a paper resume through regular mail (it would be inefficient, by the time your paper resume got there by snail mail, HR would be reviewing hundreds of online applicants), I wonder if fewer and fewer people are turning to online dating INSTEAD of meeting in real life as opposed to trying online dating IN ADDITION to meeting in real life ?  
      I actually MISS meeting people IRL.  I met my first husband while apartment hunting, and my second husband in a special interest social club.  Sure, you don’t have the “advantage” of seeing their age, smoking status, political views, occupation, relationship goals and hobby list emblazoned on their t-shirt, but you have a face to face assessment of what they ACTUALLY look like (not a photo shop version or a 10 year old pic), you can see their body language, hear their voice and know if conversationally you mesh at that first meeting. 
      Meeting someone IRL, allows you to screen quicker than online in my opinion.  But still,  I don’t bite when someone online asks to meet me  with their opening e-mail.  Lately, it’s been very few e-mails AT ALL for me, but when I was doing better online, there would be guys that would ask me out in that first e-mail.  (as well as the guys who wanted to endlessly e-mail) 
      So a few e-mails and a phone call or two, helps weed out the OBVIOUS ones that you don’t want to meet, but face to face is the ultimate screening tool.  Just MHO, YMMV.

  3. 3
    Ann

    I definitely think online dating helps a lot at screening people as I am the minority in the minority and have very high expectation and criteria when it comes to dating candidates.  And I know how important compatibility works in long-term relationships compared to chemistry. After initial data filtering I don’t have many candidates left anyway, then I will select some to read further and exam their questions and answers carefully to see if they have any serious dealbreakers that I can’t tolerate. Then I will contact them and see how it goes, and will not meet any until many msgs are exchanged. Though that being said, I also took Evan’s advice on giving the man you don’t normally consider (that would be someone who might be a good guy but fall out of my strict criteria is interested in me, after reading my profile and questions, and initiates a contact and we both feel comfortable for the conversation) a chance to shine, but obviously I still apply some screening and compatibility verification techniques that are applied to candidates selection. 

    1. 3.1
      DatingGuy

      You won’t meet until many messages are exchanged. Then it sounds more like you’re looking for a pen-pal rather than for a date.

  4. 4
    starthrower68

    I miss the ice cream social.  

  5. 5
    Lynn (the other one!)

    This is very timely. I teach meditation and related subjects, and a chat with a much younger friend about dating apps sparked the idea for a series of classes we’re calling “Forging Authentic Relationships in a Hookup Culture”. My friend and I are of two very different opinions about digital hookups – she for, me against. Personally I think we’re on the losing end of bucking biology with apps for quick hookups and it’s nearly impossible to be more than superficial. She disagrees and had some good points I hadn’t considered. It should make for an interesting exploration in class!
    I’m no fogey and a long-time early adopting technophile so am surprised how much hookup apps appall me. I’m curious to find out what my students have to say!

  6. 6
    TinaManila

    Registered for free  UNO http://www.eHarmony.com. Downloaded and used their app to communicate with my matches. 
     
    My fiancée and I are getting married this June 1. :)
     
    yes, I think dating apps work.

  7. 7
    Germaine Beuviere

    I use Match.com’s app. Being on the go and especially with my cross country move coming up, I’m not able to get on my computer. Having the app keeps me in the loop and allows me to do pretty much the same things I do on the site.

    This is a big deal for me since I had a lot of blockage that has been keeping me from dating for quite some time. I’m now making an honest effort after dealing with them and actually pursuing dating. Even so, you still have to screen whether you use an app, online dating, or the old fashioned version. You don’t go into a car lot to buy a car without doing your homework. You don’t move across country without doing your homework. Why should dating be any different? I’m the Research Queen so I do my homework on anything I do. 

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