HYDERABAD: THERE’S a large, important, cultural shift happening — one we’ve seen for a while in Gen Z, but it’s now expanding because of Covid-19. The pandemic has accelerated a generational shift in the way we date and meet new people, and we’ve learned that connection is enduring, and despite social distancing, Gen-Z will find a way to sustain it. Here’s everything that happened on Tinder in the last few months.
Covid-19 got us to open up
The combination of being stuck at home and the fact that we were all going through the same thing at the same time led folks on Tinder to get chattier than ever. Globally, April 5 was the peak of this chattiness: on that day Tinder members sent an average of 52 per cent more messages vs. the start of lockdowns in early March. In India, May 3 was the peak of this chattiness: on that day Tinder members sent an average of 60 per cent more messages vs. the start of lockdowns in early March – above the global average.
“2020 made me realise”
To help users better introduce themselves to potential matches, Tinder recently released ‘Prompts’, a new in-app feature that lets members respond to questions or finish a sentence to display on their profile. Of all available ‘Prompts’, ‘2020 made me realise’ had the highest adoption, signaling how much our daily lives have changed from every perspective — including how we gauge compatibility with potential matches on Tinder. Quarantine led to creative hacks for hanging out. Social distancing turned us into creative digital daters. Forced to stay home, browsing Tinder became a way to socialise. At its peak, swipe volume among members in India was up 32 per cent. And with most places closed, many on Tinder looked to Animal Crossing to rendezvous.
Early quarantine saw a 5x increase in Animal Crossing mentions in bios. Masks became the talk of Tinder. The early days of quarantine saw an uptick in mentions of toilet paper and hand sanitiser stockpiles within member bios, but come April there was only one accessory on everyone’s minds — face masks. Members touted their own mask-wearing habits (“show me your mask and I’ll show you mine”’) or looked for shared mask POV, (“if you don’t wear a mask while grocery shopping, we’re not compatible”). While dating and socialising out of quarantine looks different around the world right now, hanging out on Tinder is showing no signs of letting up.