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Many online daters enlist their friends in an effort to put their best digital foot forward.Some 22% of online daters have asked someone to help them create or review their profile.It’s not impossible that casual romantic encounters might morph into friendships, Paul said, but for students “to look at these apps through just those friendships seems like a little bit of a stretch.” Also, Paul noted, it’s entirely possible that students weren’t entirely forthcoming with their answers.“Not many people want to admit they’re on Tinder, but somehow they have millions of subscribers.” But wouldn’t those same characteristics -- people your age with similar interests, ages and attributes -- make college campuses just as accommodating for seekers of romance? But is it possible students are also using Tinder not for sex but to find friends? There’s certainly reason to be skeptical, experts say, but there might be a kernel of truth there.More than half of college students in a recent survey said they were using Tinder and other dating apps (but mostly Tinder) to find friends, not hookups. “That seems a little bit of a stretch,” said Aditi Paul, a Ph. candidate at Michigan State University whose research has found online daters tend to break up faster and more often and are less likely to end up married than their off-line counterparts.One factor behind the substantial growth among younger adults is their use of mobile dating apps.
Students are already surrounded by loads of people their own age with similar interests and plenty of opportunity to interact, she explained -- a near-perfect petri dish for incubating friendships.
Two thirds of online daters—66%—tell us that they have gone on a date with someone they met through a dating site or dating app.
That is a substantial increase from the 43% of online daters who had actually progressed to the date stage when we first asked this question in 2005.
Only 20 percent of the 200 students surveyed by campus jobs start-up Way Up said they used the app for casual sex, and less than a third said they were looking for a significant other. At least a few people are indeed looking for friends on Tinder, Paul said, which she knows because she’s met some of them, but they weren’t college students.
Two hundred students isn’t a very large pool -- the app is estimated to have 50 million subscribers -- and is this even a question students would answer honestly?