It’s Summer Time — Let’s Go On Tinder

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

With finals and graduation well behind us, many students are off attempting to change the world one sharpened pencil and answered call at a time. But while internships, summer jobs, and relaxing on the beach are fun, many Swatties still crave for a date (or hookup, if you so choose!).

It doesn’t matter if you prefer hookups or Swat marriages — being away from other like-minded singles can make summer dating hard. But the Silicon Valley has you covered in the form of the popular location-based dating app, Tinder. I won’t explain how Tinder works, but if you’ve been living under a rock (or deep inside the Swarthmore bubble) here is a good video explanation. 

And while some may find the app creepy, it may be one’s best hope for finding that one summer fling. But here are some Tinder dos and don’ts.


1.    Have a profile picture that is just you. No group shots! You don’t want an accidental match where your match thinks you are one of your more attractive friends! #awkward?

2.    Say you go to Swarthmore on your profile! My friends are split on this, but I’m still all for it. If you’re looking for dates and not just hookups, it’s a great conversation starter and can make you seem ten times more attractive if your match is into the intellectual type. Trust me, I just went on my third date with a Vassar graduate who admits that me mentioning Swarthmore in my profile was a plus.

3.    Be honest about what you want. If you just want to hookup, great! Say it! If you want to go on dates, say it! Nothing is worse than grabbing coffee with a match and finding out he only wants to get in your pants.


1.    Act like you’re above online dating. We’re all on Tinder. Don’t try to be that “cool” kid who is “just on Tinder for laughs.”

2.    Meet up with someone with one picture and no phone number! This one should be self-explanatory. We’ve all seen Catfish.

3.    Change who you are to please someone else. If your cutest match wants a guy who plays three sports and loves camping, don’t try to be that person if you aren’t.

And while the above list was created with limited Tinder experience, I’ve now gone on three dates with the same guy I met on Tinder and we agree on three important Tinder rules — be yourself, be honest, and be open.



  1. “No group shots! You don’t want an accidental match where your match thinks you are one of your more attractive friends! #awkward?”


  2. More do’s:

    Put your best pics first. Gotta grab potential matches’ attention

    Your pictures should showcase different facets of your personality (concertgoer? Athlete? Intellectual?)

    Have a clever tag line. Show people you are interesting with your photos and confirm it with your tag line.

    Have a friend go over your profile. Sometimes what you think is a good idea just might not be.

    Make sure your photos actually look like you and not like you ten years ago. You don’t want catfish? Then don’t be one.

    Take advantage of moments. It’s like a live update to see if someone is who they say they are and look like their pictures.

    More don’ts:

    Wait too long to message someone after you get matched. If a match is newer, you’re probably more inclined to remember them and probably feel excited to chit chat, and they will to.

    Don’t be scared to send the first message. If it doesn’t go well or if they ignore you, then whatever. Not like you actually met them. Plus, this is why you message before meeting a person, to make sure things won’t go horribly.

    Making assumptions about what someone said is never good. Things over texts are tinged with the ambiguity of written word. So ask for clarification if you’re confused.


    Let’s be real, Tinder is very superficial. It’s about initial attraction. Just like you’re judging people for how they present themselves to you, they’re judging you for how you present yourself to them. If you’re not comfortable with this idea or the prejudice that people might judge you and treat you with, don’t use tinder. It’s not Swarthmore and people might say things you don’t want to hear (read: heteronormative, cis-privileged, whatever else swatties say).

    This is just my perspective, but not a do-all, end-all type of deal. At the end of the day, make sure you follow your gut.

  3. I’d rethink the Swarthmore line. I’m glad it worked on your third date with a closeted lesbian, but most people either won’t know what Swarthmore is, or will rightfully hold it against you.

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