San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

Dating apps, popular but ineffective for students

Graphic courtesy of Freepik
Despite dating apps growing in popularity, students say they struggle to find meaningful connections.

The dating world has changed to accommodate the digital age. Love at first sight is better known as love at first swipe! 

Some of the most popular dating apps include Bumble, Tinder, Grindr and Plenty of Fish. Tinder has over 7 million users, Bumble has over 5 million and Grindr has over 1 million users as of 2019, according to

Hinge tripled its revenue in 2020, according to Despite the large user base the apps have accumulated, some students say they have been relatively unsuccessful in finding meaningful connections. 

“I am nothing but honest and I put myself out there and I show I am a good person to date in the sense that I am school oriented and I have a great social life…but it is hard to stand out when women are being flooded with tons and tons of people,” computer science senior Nathaniel Shalev said.

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Online dating is becoming the “new normal” but some say the personality gets lost in the profile.

“I started using dating apps after I got out of a really long relationship and I kind of was like I don’t really know. I guess this is what everybody does,” criminal justice senior Krista Warner said. “It was kind of almost like an expectation. It is just the new normal right?”

Warner said the amount of time and effort one must dedicate to dating online makes the process feel like work at times.

“I would describe them as work because I feel like it is kind of like a marathon,” Warner said. “You can’t guarantee that matching with one person, talking with them and then going out with them is going to work out for you.”

Thirty-year-old Parker Meister met his current girlfriend on Tinder. Although he said he generally does not enjoy dating apps, he had a good experience with his now girlfriend. 

Her Tinder profile said, “get me off this god-forsaken app” and he had the exact same thought since the app could be a “double-edged sword.”

“I was in the same kind of headspace because I really don’t like online dating…but at the same time because of COVID it is kind of hard to go out and meet somebody.”

There is a lot of discourse about the prospect of choosing a partner based on personality bullet points and a couple of photos. 

“I felt like I was going through a catalog and I felt so horrible when I didn’t choose somebody because like what gives me the right,” Warner said. “I don’t know them, what if they are really nice? I don’t know anything about them…and I feel like you have to be okay with that going into a dating app, being like okay I am going to be superficial at first then I’ll get to know you, which I was uncomfortable with.”

Swiping across several similar apps is not the only option for singles in San Diego. Shalev said he prefers to attend singles events that he finds via Meetup. 

“Lately I have switched up my approach. I have been using Meetup more,” Shalev said. “I enjoy singles groups instead of dating apps. It saddens me that everyone is in this position where we are just talking past each other. I kind of wish dating apps were more authentic and actually was more fruitful for everyone.”

About the Contributor
Katelynn Robinson
Katelynn Robinson, '21-22 News Editor
Katelynn Robinson is a junior studying journalism and political science. 
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San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913
Dating apps, popular but ineffective for students