Women are often called c-nts and whores and told to go kill themselves—all this for responding with a “no thanks” to a man’s advances. Laura Nowak, a 25-year-old blonde with an expressive face who lives in Toronto, uses the word “feminist” in her Tinder bio.She has received a lot of grief for it from men on the app who she says “don’t understand the relationship between casual sex and respect for women.” So she started posting her Tinder conversations on Instagram at feminist_tinder.
Police alleged that he had lured at least two women through dating sites like Tinder with saccharine messages and promises he could help them start modelling careers.Unofficially, they’re here to bond over dates-gone-wrong war stories, more veterans of the awkward and terrible than fairy-tale protagonists.A darkly funny evening, it’s a testament to our new digital dating culture: fast, fun and freeing but also dangerous and disposable.For Nowak, they add up: all the times she’s told to smile more, the times she’s asked within seconds if she “does anal,” the times guys tell her she needs to learn how to take a compliment, and the many unsolicited junk snaps.Related: “I have girlfriends who feel like that’s the sacrifice they have to make to be in a casual relationship,” says Nowak. How do we promote things like equality, respect and consent when our new hookup culture tells us a picture of an erection is an acceptable way for a man to say hello to a woman?While old-school dating websites still have a loyal following, use of the latter has skyrocketed since the launch of Tinder back in 2012. K.-based research firm Global Web Index, there are now 91 million people on Tinder and the many copycats that followed.(Even OKCupid and Plenty of Fish have introduced swipe functions.) Roughly one-third of those users are women, and the vast majority of them are aged 16 to 34.Estimates from 2014 peg Tinder’s worldwide activity at 50 million, and the company says it routinely processes more than one billion swipes every day.The Tinder user is also super engaged: on average, both men and women log on to the app 11 times daily, with women spending eight and a half minutes swiping—left for no, right for yes—per session, and men clocking seven minutes.The audience listens, rapt, as she launches into a story about a truly dismal Starbucks date.Her wannabe beau, she confesses, showed up wearing a Cosby-esque sweater (not ironically, she thinks), was at least 15 years older than his profile picture and smelled like the back of a stale cab.