slow grindr

Online dating, not surprisingly, has struck up an intimate affair with the iPhone.

Apps like OkCupid, Grindr and Blendr can put users in touch with single men and women in their area who are down for a date…or perhaps a little hanky panky.

To be clear, we are living in an internet age. When even your grandmother has a Twitter and your entire extended family has Facebook, you know it’s real.

Now, a major collective pro for these apps is that it saves time. When you can get a date within seconds between classes or after work, why the hell not sign up for it? It also removes the threat of immediate rejection. People who are already on the Grindr grid have pretty much already consented to being your date, totally eliminating the awkward “thanks…but I’m busy” conversation.

Its makers/users/critics are concerned with 2 main things: 1) that the speed with which dates can be secured denotes some sort of “sex first chat later” situation rather than a good ‘ole fashioned date and 2) that going on a date with someone you not only don’t know but have never seen before is dangerous.

But aren’t all dates (and arguably most human interactions in general) ultimately about sex? And how safe is any form of dating, be it online, offline, or if it emerges out of sharing a wholesome strawberry milkshake at your local soda shoppe?

Perhaps if we examine the reality of human interactions we’ll come a little bit closer to an impartial perspective on dating technologies, wherever and however they may be. The truth is, all human interactions initially thrive off of the satisfaction of our most basic, often shallow, need: companionship. Whether they evolve into something more meaningful is a function of time, compatibility, and commitment. If understanding the somewhat two-dimensional meaning of a human existence is the merry music of the dating game, play on.