Tinder and the absent date: The modern dating philosophy

Eevery woman has a seducer. Her happiness is only to meet him (Kierkegaard in The Journal of the Seducer)

Modern Love has strange forms. Meetic.com or Match.com, precursors of the online dating had dematerialized the date. An application again from the United States, available on Facebook, Tinder, took some magnitude (750 million reviewed in day) seems to bring back a disruption of the meeting.

What does this success? Is it an epiphenomenon or can it be analyzed as paradigmatic relationships with others today?

Tinder and modern courtship

Tinder with the gallant court practiced since the Middle Ages to our parents, is definitely old-fashioned. The principle is very simple: the application offers profiles and you decide whether or not to “like” only from the photo. The person concerned is prevented even if she “like” your profile. You discover each other while your “attraction”.

What is striking at first is the connection with consumption. Scrolling through profiles (geographically close to you) as you would through the fridges or sofas. Conceived as an e-commerce website (not unlike Adopt a Man, which developed with humor a shopping cart system in which women are shopping for men), with Tinder dating as a merchant, daily act. However, dating is precisely what upsets the daily life. This trivialization is probably a reflection of a generation that has stopped believing in love. Tinder is the Ikea of dating.

Second, the commodification of the body. The only criterion is the photo, so the look. Certainly, your image is the first thing that others see you. But this reduction of the self to the body, an image is actually an identity reduction. Here, too, encounter is dating a context, gestures, in short a complete and complex identity, not just a stage image. The oversimplification not she kills the depth of a dating?

Third, anonymity. You select the profiles you like, safely and under cover, as concerned will know about it only if reciprocity. Chance canceled discretion under the pretext of meeting evaporates.

Fourth vanity. A user Tinder he really seeks the encounter? Does not it looks rather favorable reflection from others, a flattering echo his ego? Does he really want to spend the digital connection to real life? Nothing is less certain.

The banter has not disappeared (contrary to what Badiou could say in praise of love), it is transformed with Tinder. But corollary, real life is sanitized, weakened.

Playing the game

These four elements (consumption, commodification, anonymity, vanity) explain the success of this service. For it is not Tinder creates this need, it only provides what is needed zapping creatures eager to love. Namely an ersatz meeting where control and security replaces adventure, immediacy takes the place of seduction.

However, Tinder has a real virtue, that of asking the “encounters” the playful mode. On Tinder, we play to who we like, who are going to like. And that’s the bottom maybe this important point. Tinder is not a dating site (or application), but matchmaking, Universal invitation to play, where simplicity certainly rhymes with simplicity. They are not looking to make friends, they play to meet, they play the game.

Conclude with the romantic cynicism of Kierkegaard:

“It’s too little to love one … loving as many as possible, that’s enjoyment, that’s life”

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