Is the Tinder App Safe for Students? Parent App Guide

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Is the Tinder App Safe for Students? Parent App Guide

February 21, 2017

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What is Tinder?

  • A dating app that shows other Tinder users nearby who share similar interests or mutual friends
  • Users anonymously swipe right if they’re interested in seeing a user’s profile or they swipe left to pass
  • If both users express interest or “swipe right” on each other then those users become a match
  • Once a user has been matched with another Tinder user they can start chatting with each other in the app
  • Users can post images and messages as "moments," which exist for 24 hours and then disappear
  • When signing up, users must use a Facebook profile to verify their authenticity to Tinder

Why should parents care?

  • Tinder is a dating app for adults and is not appropriate for teens under 18
  • User's location, pictures and bio are all in one place, which can make it easier for predators to target victims on the app
  • The app has a reputation for finding casual “hookups”, rather than friendships or long-term partnerships
  • The focus of “swiping right” or “swiping left” on users’ pictures encourages teens to treat dating like a game – or in an impersonal, judgmental, and superficial way
  • Teens can become self-criticizing if they begin to judge themselves based on how many “likes” or “swipes” they receive

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Green Zone

Parents and Teachers: This app is listed in the SmartSocial.com Green Zone.
We believe this app is a STARTING POINT for your student, but that you must monitor your student on every app they are on. Join our weekly newsletter to learn about the 100+ App Reviews at SmartSocial.com

Gray Zone

Parents and Teachers: Please note this app is listed in the SmartSocial.com Gray Zone.
Parents should participate in these apps with students to keep them safe.
Join our weekly newsletter to learn about the 100+ App Reviews at SmartSocial.com

Red Zone

Parents and Teachers: This app is listed in the SmartSocial.com Red Zone. We believe this app is not safe for students to use without adult supervision. Join our weekly newsletter to learn about the 100+ App Reviews at SmartSocial.com

Dangerous Social media challenges

Parents and Teachers: This app is listed as a Dangerous Social Media Challenge. Knowing about social media challenges before your teen does can help you keep them safe before an incident occurs. Join our weekly newsletter to learn about the 100+ App Reviews at SmartSocial.com

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Parent & educator training video

What is Tinder?

Tinder is a dating app that shows the user other Tinder users who are nearby and share similar interests or mutual friends
  • A dating app that shows other Tinder users nearby who share similar interests or mutual friends
  • Users anonymously swipe right if they’re interested in seeing a user’s profile or they swipe left to pass
  • If both users express interest or “swipe right” on each other then those users become a match
  • Once a user has been matched with another Tinder user they can start chatting with each other in the app
  • Users can post images and messages as "moments," which exist for 24 hours and then disappear
  • When signing up, users must use a Facebook profile to verify their authenticity to Tinder

Tinder in the news

Not all teenagers have cars or driver’s licenses, and many of them hide Tinder from their parents. The Guardian
“Not all teenagers have cars or driver’s licenses, and many of them hide Tinder from their parents.” The Guardian
“The experts we talked to agree that 13 or 14 is too young for [Tinder].” Teen Vogue
“Teenagers — as young as 13 — who use Tinder are flirting with danger, police warn.” Tech Times

Teen online dating statistics

  • In 2016, Tinder increased the dating app’s age requirement from 13 to 18 years old
  • The average user spends 35 minutes every day on Tinder
  • One-quarter of teen “daters” have dated or hooked up with someone they first met online

Why should parents care?

Tinder is a dating app for adults and is not appropriate for teens under 18.
  • Tinder is a dating app for adults and is not appropriate for teens under 18
  • User's location, pictures and bio are all in one place, which can make it easier for predators to target victims on the app
  • The app has a reputation for finding casual “hookups”, rather than friendships or long-term partnerships
  • The focus of “swiping right” or “swiping left” on users’ pictures encourages teens to treat dating like a game – or in an impersonal, judgmental, and superficial way
  • Teens can become self-criticizing if they begin to judge themselves based on how many “likes” or “swipes” they receive

What can parents do?

If your student has Tinder, immediately ask them to delete the app.
  • Teach your teen to never meet a stranger in-person who they met online
  • Challenge your teen to make new friends at school, through sports leagues, or at events in your community
  •  
  • If your student has Tinder:
  • Immediately ask them to delete the app
  • Instead, have them use one of the apps in our Green or Grey zones
  • Discuss the age limitations of the app and why it is inappropriate for teens to use Tinder

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