Viral Hinge message shows major problem with dating app culture (2024)


'Heyyy thanks for checking in, would you mind if we put a pin in those plans for now?'

ByAnna Iovine on

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Viral Hinge message shows major problem with dating app culture (1)

A Hinge message breaking off plans sparked lots of different reactions on X.Credit: Roman Samborskyi / Shutterstock

Private messages on dating apps often don't stay private. Screenshotting a conversation with a match and showing your friends — or strangers on social media — is common. Such is the case from this Hinge message an X (formerly Twitter) user @bjorksunibrow posted this week:

Tweet may have been deleted

"Heyyy thanks for checking in, would you mind if we put a pin in those plans for now?" the message reads. "Full transparency: I kind of met someone yesterday that I wasn't expecting to vibe with as much as I did and I'd feel a bit weird going out right away with someone else."


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The "radically" honest, corporate jargon-laced message generated lots of reactions on X. Carlos, the user who received it, captioned the screenshot, "We're in an era of over-communication." In a follow-up post, he said, "Normalize white lies!"

In a DM, Carlos told me that the date was the sender's idea. Carlos was looking forward to it, as they flirted on and off, but when he messaged his match to confirm the date the day of, he received "The Message."

"So many things bothered me about it," Carlos said, "the HR professional tone, the fact that he was canceling a date that he proposed, that he let me know he hit it off with someone else he’d just met, that he implied a future date if things didn’t work out with this new guy..."

Carlos ultimately believes there are kinder and more decent ways to cancel a date. As it was a first date, he didn't need all the details. "I date casually quite a bit and try to let someone down in a way that isn't so crass," he said. "That includes an occasional white lie to cushion the blow."

Other people agreed with the sentiment of Carlos's tweet, saying this message was too up-front and the person should've lied. Some, however, loved the message, hailing its transparency or simply calling it "normal" and "mature." Others still called the message "soulless" and "brutal."

There's no right answer here; your actions will never please everybody, especially on social media. Carlos told me he received comments saying he must be "allergic to direct communication," and other assumptions about the kind of person he is. "I wish more folks would move away from brazen honesty and toward sympathy and communication that considers basic human decency," he said.

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The message and subsequent response speak volumes about the current state of dating and, more broadly, our relationships. On some level, we're forgetting (or already forgot) how to actually talk to each other.

We communicate, perhaps even over-communicate as Carlos said, but for typing a whole lot of words, we're not saying much of anything.

The sender followed a script. He shoved his intangible feelings into the corporate- and therapy-speak meat grinder, and this message oozed out. Instead of telling the unfiltered truth, he dressed it up in the nicest yet most sterile way possible.

Carlos let the match know he didn't need all the info, while the would-be date replied that he prefers "to be open about things."

On some level, the "HR professional tone" is understandable. In 2024, there's always a possibility of someone screenshotting your words and disseminating them for the world to see. People have been harassed and doxxed for less. (Thankfully, here, Carlos cut out any identifying information before uploading the screenshot to X.)

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Social media has programmed us to think about each and every possible reaction, and most of them are unkind. We're constantly aware of how others perceive us. In our obsession with optics, we hedge, add disclaimers, and dilute our true thoughts until they're a puddle of nothing.

Aside from this issue, this message also reeks of "optimization." In the search for meaning under capitalism (or, I don't know, a lot of TikTok followers), many have turned to optimizing their health and work. This has bled over into dating. Why actually think about and share my actual feelings, when the internet (or your therapist, or ChatGPT) already wrote a response for me? Why stop swiping on apps when my next match might be ten percent hotter or make ten percent more money? Why keep my plans with that one Hinge match when the person I met yesterday seems so much better?

As culture critic Magdalene J. Taylor recently wrote, optimization will not save you — and it will certainly not save relationships. If anything, optimization shrinks intimacy and trust. Our inner thoughts and feelings are messy, but sharing them actually leads to us getting to know one another on that messy, human level.

Maybe that message of "putting a pin" in plans was "optimal," but as my Mashable colleague Cecily Mauran said, it reads more like a bad layoff email. In this era of increasing tech and optimization, we need more reminders that life is inherently messy — and not the kind of uncanny valley messiness of an AI-generated photo, but something different. Something human.

UPDATE: Apr. 12, 2024, 4:29 p.m. EDT This article has been updated with additional context from Carlos, @bjorksunibrow on X.


Anna Iovine is associate editor of features at Mashable. Previously, as the sex and relationships reporter, she covered topics ranging from dating apps to pelvic pain. Before Mashable, Anna was a social editor at VICE and freelanced for publications such as Slate and the Columbia Journalism Review. Follow her on X @annaroseiovine.

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Viral Hinge message shows major problem with dating app culture (2024)


Are people on Hinge more serious? ›

There may be some people on the app looking for something casual, but unless you're being upfront about this on your profile, you probably will find a lot of people who are on the app for something a bit more serious.

Is Hinge a good dating app for serious relationships? ›

Anecdotally, Hinge users agree that it's the best app for serious relationships, commonly used by those who take dating a little more seriously and prefer thorough profiles for in-depth understanding. However, your age, location, and other factors may influence who appears in your feed.

Are there bots in Hinge? ›

Popular dating apps such as Tinder and Hinge are already incorporating AI into their technology, allowing users to turn over online exchanges to chatbots. The automated systems are also serving as trainers and matchmakers for people who consider themselves lovers, not fighters.

Do guys message girls on Hinge? ›

Many women feel overwhelmed on Hinge because they receive so many messages from guys. And that makes them less likely to respond to any given guy's message… simply because they don't have the time.

Is Hinge more for hookups or dating? ›

Dating app FAQs

Many people have friends who went on Tinder looking for a one-night stand but ended up finding long-term relationships. Hinge tends to be the best in-between app for those looking for both a casual fling and something more serious.

What is the male to female ratio on Hinge? ›

Based on the same demographic study, the male to female ratio on Hinge is approximately 2:1, with men outnumbering women. While this gender imbalance may pose a challenge for male users seeking matches, it's essential to note that Hinge still has a sizable user base with a range of preferences and backgrounds!

Which dating app has the most female users? ›

Christian Mingle comes in at 58.6 percent, Coffee Meets Bagel is not far behind with a whopping 57.3 percent of women and eHarmony is in third place with 55.2 percent. Then, there's OkCupid, Bumble (BMBL), Match and Tinder.

Which dating site has the highest success rate? ›

Summary: Compare the Best Online Dating Sites in 2024
ProductForbes Health RatingsBest For
Match4.8Most Well-Established
OkCupid4.8Most Comprehensive Matching Algorithm
eharmony4.6Best Free Features
Zoosk4.4Best for Behavior Matching
1 more row
Mar 8, 2024

Are there any fake profiles on Hinge? ›

If you search the person's name and can't find any information about them, there's a good chance it's a fake profile. They have purple “Just joined” badges on their profiles. If you see a Hinge profile with a “Just joined” badge, it could be a real person who just joined the site.

How to tell if someone is a catfish on Hinge? ›

Watch out for these behaviours to avoid relationship scams and catfish.
  1. They want to know your personal details. ...
  2. Conversations that get personal very quickly. ...
  3. You can't find any trace of them online. ...
  4. They ask you for money. ...
  5. They ask you to keep your relationship secret. ...
  6. They avoid face-to-face contact.

Why do so many people ghost on Hinge? ›

Either they decide that you aren't the right match or dating isn't a priority. Instead of communicating that, they opt for silence. Maybe they couldn't find the right words, don't have the courage to be honest, or can't pinpoint what the issue is.

Does Hinge decide how attractive you are? ›

But founder Justin McLeod denies claims that the app judges users based on their looks, telling Fortune Executive Exchange that “we don't really have an attractiveness score.” Instead, he says, Hinge creates an individualized “taste profile” for users by tracking who they like and who likes them back.

Is it bad to double text a girl on Hinge? ›

According to Hinge's research, 13% of daters say double-texting gives them the ick. They're also encouraging people to send two another follow-up message if the first doesn't get a response.

Why does Hinge say your turn? ›

Your Turn is a way to remind users when it's their turn to respond in a Conversation. We've found this helps reduce ghosting and leads to better connections. The red badge/counter on the app icon on your phone is the sum of incoming likes, new Matches, and Conversations where it is your turn to respond.

Is Hinge more serious than Tinder? ›

It depends on what you are looking for. Both apps target the same age group (people below 40). However, Tinder is better for people who are interested in casual dating and hookups. Hinge is much better for people who are looking for long-term relationships and true love.

Which is more serious Hinge or Bumble? ›

Hinge is serious about standing out in the dating market. Rather than endless swiping, Hinge is designed so that users will put more thought into their choices. You're only given 10 "likes" a day, so you need to make them count.

How do you tell if you are a standout on Hinge? ›

Hinge does not directly notify you when your profile is featured on Standouts on someone else's feed. However, if you suddenly start receiving a bunch of Roses and comments, you more than likely have made it onto people's Standouts feeds!


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