It’s great to just talk to people and meet up with people.”“I have a boyfriend right now whom I met on Tinder,” says Frannie Steinlage, a 34-year-old straight woman who is a health-care consultant in Denver.But “it really is sifting through a lot of crap to be able to find somebody.”Sales’s article focused heavily on the negative effects of easy, on-demand sex that hookup culture prizes and dating apps readily provide.Hinge is subleasing one of its two floors to another startup. He says Hinge took the adjacent floor in its building because the opportunity came up, and that the other startup only occupies 60% of it.The posting for that sublease listed 40 seats as available to rent.I don’t believe technology has distracted us from real human connection.I don’t believe hookup culture has infected our brains and turned us into soulless sex-hungry swipe monsters. It doesn’t do to pretend that dating in the app era hasn’t changed. Tinder arrived in 2012, and nipping at its heels came other imitators and twists on the format, like Hinge (connects you with friends of friends), Bumble (women have to message first), and others.
But in the past year or so, I’ve felt the gears slowly winding down, like a toy on the dregs of its batteries.Swiping “yes” on someone didn’t inspire the same excited queasiness that asking someone out in person does, but there was a fraction of that feeling when a match or a message popped up.Each person felt like a real possibility, rather than an abstraction.Estimates from app analytics companies Sensor Tower, Apptopia, and Survey Monkey Intelligence all show Hinge's monthly active users declining in 2016. "App is unusable, time drain, nobody using seriously anymore," one reviewer wrote. Around the time of the secret pivot, Mc Leod also began to clean house.He says he was unhappy with the progress on the engineering side, so he rebuilt the team.Hinge CEO Justin Mc Leod is not afraid of making big bets.