social media

The affordances of desire: on dating apps

Apps like Tinder, Bumble, Hinge, OkCupid, Grindr, Scruff and Brenda offer affordances that are built into the way they are designed. These affordances import all the assumptions and norms of both those who make them, and adapt primarily to what sells: they turn daters into consumers of each other, and unwitting producers of data for the monopolistic behemoths of the digital world. Dating apps are actively involved in reproducing the traits of contemporary capitalism, transforming our very desires in ways that reshape and homogeneise how we love each other.