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Dating apps and links

The advent of dating apps has revolutionized meeting potential dating partners. Tinder, a pioneer in the world of dating apps, has become notorious for not being used dating at all, but more like a game to see who finds you attractive. Hinge is a dating app that distinguished itself from Tinder initially by only matching users with their extended social networks. By doing this, Hinge sought to distinguish itself as more of a relationship app than Tinder. However, Hinge reported that only 15% of matches would turn into actual conversations. In addition, they found that over 80% of users hadn’t found any type of relationship on any swiping app. Clearly, although Hinge had a motive of wanting to be a relationship app, the gamification element of the swiping dating apps was working against their objective. Now, Hinge has completely changed the way their app works. They have removed the swiping component altogether and formatted it in a way that resembles a hybrid of Instagram and Facebook. They have also introduced a monthly fee of $7 to use the app.

The different dating apps can be looked at as a graph of web pages and links where users are both hubs and authorities. Although many users are swiping on each other every on Tinder, there is low expectation for the types of interactions that come out of Tinder, if any interactions come at all. Tinder has a larger pool of users, and their users can be seen as pages having a high indegree, with many swipes and matches counting as a link, but with low level score due to the casual gaming aspect of the app. Hinge is trying to increase score of users’ pages by emphasizing more personal information about themselves that other users may be interested in. By letting users have a more comprehensive way of choosing other users, Hinge can increase the likelihood that users interact with people they actually want to interact with. They also seek to decrease the amount of low scoring links by instigating the fee for the app. Essentially, they want to weed out those who are not as invested in the dating scene by making users pay for the app. This again is a way Hinge seeks to build a network of hubs/authorities that are more likely to form desired high quality links.


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October 2016