Here to dispel some of the horrible things we hear about dating apps and online dating, Tinder’s Modern Dating Myths Survey has arrived. The study took place in February this year and it was huge. They surveyed over 9,000 U.S. and adults, ages 18 -36, consisting of Tinder users and folks who have never online dated — and have no plan to. So, it's a big look at all things Tinder versus offline dating.
And while the myth goes that Tinder is filled to the brim with people just looking for hookups (although, there's nothing wrong with casual sex), that doesn't totally seem to be the case. And neither are the complaints that online dating just means a bunch of ghosts, breadcrumbers, zombies, and whatever new fad will rise its ugly head next.
"There have been fears and concerns around the effects of technology on behavior and social values since the introduction of paper, literally!" Tinder Sociologist, Dr. Jess Carbino, tells Bustle. "Most concerns are related to the concept that technology may disrupt daily routines — like romance — and the way of life and understanding the world. The myths that we debunked regarding online dating are similar in the way that people are initially hesitant about adopting this newer idea of finding love."
In fact, when it comes to things like wanting love, long-term relationships, and even just caring about fidelity, you'd be surprised to see just how the Tinder users fared. And how the non-Tinder users responded was pretty unexpected too — though, in all fairness it's unclear as to whether this pool of Millennials is currently single and looking to meet people.
So what did Tinder find? Well, it's a total treasure trove of information showing that maybe technology hasn't totally ruined romance in all the ways we've been hearing about. Here were the most interesting findings, because Tinder users seem to be serious about dating, but damn, everyone needs to be having safer sex:
1Tinder Users Have More Relationships
Tinder users were more likely to pull down high numbers of relationships. Over half of folks who don't date online had only one (or zero) relationships under their belt, but only 26 percent of Tinder users said the same.
2Less Than 10 Percent Of Tinder Users Have Trouble Holding Down A Relationship
Nine percent, as a matter of fact — far lower than the national average. It was actually 30 percent of non-dating app users said that they had trouble holding down a relationship because of all the choices.
3Maybe Single Millennials Aren't Really Playing The Field
Only five percent of Tinder users messaged a 'high volume' of potential partners (5-7) each week. But only five percent of non-Tinder users did the same, so everyone's even on that one.
4Non-Tinder Users Find It Harder To Say, "I Love You"
"We were intrigued by quite a few findings from the survey, however the most surprising stat to me pertained to offline daters and saying those three little words, 'I love you.'," Carbino tells Bustle.
Seriously, non-Tinder users were twice as likely to have never said "I love you". Who'd have thought?
5Tinder Users Want To Be Exclusive
....at least as exclusive as everyone else. When it comes to nailing down the exclusivity question, 15 percent of people do it in the first month — whether they are Tinder users or not.
6Tinder Users May Be Less Likely To String You Along
You may think of Tinder users are being the best breadcrumbers and zombies — the type of people who stay in your life but just can't be nailed down. But actually, only four percent of Tinder users confessed to refusing to commit after having been a year into a relationship. But 13 percent— or over three times as many — offline folks said they had done it.
7Tinder Users Are Not Wasting Time
This one definitely surprised me. Ninety-five percent of Tinder users who meet up up will do so within two to seven days of matching. So we're talking within a week. They're definitely not wasting time getting to that in real-life contact.
8It's Not All About Looks
We're not all shallow swiping Millennials. Tinder users put age and education as the two most important things they consider — looks came in third, thank you very much.
9Tinder Users Have Safer Sex
Seventy percent of online daters always or almost always use protection when they're having sex with a new partner, compared to 63 percent of offline folks. Though, to be honest, neither of those numbers are high enough.
10Tinder Care About Fidelity
In fact, they were three percent more likely to rate fidelity as important versus offline folks.
11Especially Female Tinder Users
Female Tinder users were the most likely group to care about fidelity — with 88 percent saying it was important. The least likely? Men who don't use dating apps, only 71 percent of them said it mattered.
12Tinder Users Were More Political
Seventy-one percent of Tinder users thought that political issues could be a deal-breaker, compared to 66 percent of those who don't date online.
13Offline Daters Are More Likely To Think Careers Are A Deal-breaker
Twenty percent of those who don't date online thought not having the same career aspirations was a deal-breaker, but only 13 percent of online daters thought the same.
So it seems like we're not as a vapid and indecisive as all the rumors say. "Based on the findings, online daters and Tinder users can do a better job of signaling their level of interest and potential investment when they receive a new match by messaging them with direct questions or observations about their profile," Carbino tells Bustle. "This is an effective strategy especially knowing that this is the number one thing Tinder users say they want their match to do: signal investment. Users can also show interest by crafting their bio to include interests as well as personal likes and dislikes which will help determine compatibility and move the conversation forward with prospective matches." In fact, if you're looking for a long-term relationship with someone faithful, dating apps might just be the place to look.