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Dating experts praise Tinder's new feature that invites loved ones to judge your matches

Tinder has launched a new feature that will allow users to share the profiles of potential dates with their friends and family to get a second opinion. (Getty Images/Tinder)
Tinder has launched a new feature that will allow users to share the profiles of potential dates with their friends and family to get a second opinion. (Getty Images/Tinder)

We won’t beat around the bush – dating in the modern era is hard and using dating apps hasn’t really made it easier. Whether it’s trying to figure out a cryptic bio, getting the ick from yet another fishing photo, or navigating the perils of sliding into DMs, many singletons on dating apps report being frustrated with the dating pool.

Tinder, which is the most well-known dating service in the UK, has introduced a new feature in a bid to give users a helping hand or three in finding the love of their lives. The platform recently launched Tinder Matchmaker, which lets users share other people’s profiles with up to 15 friends or family members and get their opinion before deciding on whether to go on a date.

For 24 hours after being sent a profile, friends – known as “matchmakers” – can recommend other profiles for their Tinder user, but won’t be able to chat or send messages on their behalf. Once the session expires, users can review the profiles their “matchmakers” have suggested for them and decide if they want to take things further.

Tinder's Matchmaker feature aims to make 'modern dating a team sport'. (Tinder)
Tinder's Matchmaker feature aims to make 'modern dating a team sport'. (Tinder)

Tinder said it launched the feature after it found that 75% of singletons surveyed said they discuss their dating life with friends several times a month. Tinder Matchmaker makes “modern dating a team sport by essentially integrating the ‘friend test’” into the dating app.

But how useful will it be? And is inviting other people to share their opinion – and judgement – on your potential matches before you’ve even said hello really a good idea? We turned to several dating experts and psychologists for their opinions on the new feature and discovered some divided thoughts.

‘It will allow you to consider more people’

Siobhan Copland, matchmaker and love coach, tells Yahoo UK that the new feature could be beneficial because it can help singles slow down and consider comments from friends and family about a potential date instead of making a snap judgement.

“[Family and friends] are less likely to go by the initial look alone, which individual users often do,” she says. “So it may make them take a more thoughtful approach to selecting matches.”

Dating expert and coach James Preece agrees and adds: “Ultimately, this feature is good as it will allow you to consider more people and have deeper conversations about your choices. It's a novelty that may be fun for a while.”

Dating experts think Tinder's new Matchmaker feature might make people consider profiles for longer rather than making snap judgements. (Getty Images)
Dating experts think Tinder's new Matchmaker feature might make people consider profiles for longer rather than making snap judgements. (Getty Images)

But Preece believes Tinder Matchmaker can’t replace professional matchmakers or dating agencies, who will have a more personal relationship and understanding of individuals.

“The more knowledge someone has about matches then the better then choices and the more chance of making it last,” he says. Preece also warns that dating is an inherently private aspect of life, and “nobody really wants their nearest and dearest interfering in the process”.

“Even if you are happy [about] this, dating apps only provide very limited information about its members. Anyone who views the profiles will only be able to make decisions based on a few (usually terrible!) photos and a couple of lines of texts.”

‘People are generally very bad at assessing compatibility’

While Copland and Preece see at least a bit of potential in Tinder Matchmaker, others are much less convinced. Dr Chris Fullwood, senior lecturer in psychology at Birmingham City University, tells Yahoo UK that the feature will “almost certainly not” help people find their ideal match.

“There is no compelling evidence that our friends and family are any better at judging the compatibility of potential romantic partners than we are for ourselves,” he says. “In fact, particularly in an online dating context, people are generally very bad at assessing compatibility.

“This is partly because choice overload can lead to a rejection mindset, but also because online daters are strategic in their self-presentation and will present more idealised self-images as opposed to realistic ones.”

But other experts are less sure that Tinder's new feature will be useful, as 'the more people we involve in our dating choices, the less authentic we become'. (Getty Images)
But other experts are less sure that Tinder's new feature will be useful, as 'the more people we involve in our dating choices, the less authentic we become'. (Getty Images)

Dr Fullwood adds that the way Tinder works – where users swipe left or right on profiles to dismiss or match with them – “encourages a shallower approach” to assessing dates. While a second opinion might be useful to combat this, people still tend to prioritise photos and be at risk of overlooking “other pertinent information or potential red flags”.

Renate Meyer, psychologist and founder of The Elegant Warrior, also disagrees with the new feature because “the more people we involve in our dating choices, the less authentic we become in our choices, because it clouds our judgement”.

“Every person projects their own beliefs (which are closely related to the ego and vary from person to person) onto others,” she explains.

“I see this in a lot of my clients - they seek dating advice from people that don’t even know what the other person wants in a relationship, what is healthy for them - most of these people usually carry their own traumas with them and are rarely able to be objective.

"Especially when it comes to family, there’s so much generational trauma out there, as well as the generational differences in dating is something we should take into consideration.”

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