Tinder and Facebook seem to have an inseparable relationship. To make a profile on the dating app, all users need is a Facebook account, and the user's information on the social network exclusively fuels most of the Tinder profile with few ways of editing within the app.
For instance, interests are solely pulled from what pages a user chooses to "like" on Facebook. When swiping through potential matches, a Tinder user can see what interests they have in common, called “Shared Interests” by the company. Currently, there’s no way to edit that selection other than to "unlike" something from Facebook.
In April, Tinder announced that the app may allow more flexibility and options for selecting interests in a so-called “Expanded Interests” update. But three months out, the feature has yet to be rolled out. “This spring, we teased Expanded Interests but decided to test and explore new iterations of this feature,” a Tinder representative told International Business Times in an email.
Tinder did release “verified accounts” on Tuesday, a new feature that allows “notable public figures, celebrities and athletes” to receive a blue checkmark similar to those seen on Facebook and Twitter. But for the average Tinder user, the control over his or her profile remains the same -- with few edits and tied to Facebook.
Your Facebook Identity
Since Tinder’s beginnings, the app has integrated tightly with Facebook to allow for simple quality control and verification of a user’s identity, without placing the burden on Tinder itself.
One could create a fake account on Facebook that could be used for a Tinder profile. Tinder users can report profiles and Tinder can take them down, but Facebook would not necessarily know. A Facebook representative told IBTimes that a Facebook user must report a Facebook profile, not a Tinder account, for the team to review it.
“Claiming to be another person violates our community standards, and we remove profiles reported to us that impersonate other people,” the Facebook staffer wrote in an email.
The integration with Facebook pulls your name, age and also photos. Any image used on a Tinder profile must first be uploaded to Facebook and must be visible to “your friends (not only you)” as stated in Tinder’s frequently asked questions.
But while Tinder users can choose which photos to show, frustration remains because interests cannot be edited. Indeed, Reddit posts on the subreddit Tinder have prompted the question, “How the heck does one remove ‘Interests’?”
Beyond The Likes
While competitor dating app Hinge also requires users to have Facebook accounts “to validate their identity,” the app employs “Tags” rather than “Interests.” Hinge users can select from 50 labels such as “beer snob,” “dance machine” and “zombie survivalist.”
“They give an option to share a touch of personality or humor -- that might not otherwise come through in facts pulled directly from Facebook,” Karen Fein, Hinge’s vice president of marketing, wrote in an email.
Happn, a dating app that connects users only to people they’ve crossed paths with, pulls mutual interests from Facebook as well as an open description section.
“The ‘About Me’ section is free -- you can say something about yourself, make a joke, leave it blank… Up to you,” Didier Rappaport, Happn's co-founder and CEO, wrote IBTimes in an email.
But in a creative move, Happn recently teamed up with Spotify to allow users to list favorite songs on their profiles and send songs to matches. As for Tinder, users can continue to “break the ice” over the shared interests they forgot came from Facebook pages they liked long ago, for now.