THE BLOG
03/10/2014 01:43 pm ET Updated May 10, 2014

Tinder's Evolution on College Campuses

See those kids sitting in the library, mindlessly swiping their thumbs across their smartphones? Flipping through Facebook albums? Nope. Studying electronic flashcards for their next psych test? You're kidding right?

I can bet that almost every one of those kids is neck-deep in some intense Tindering, hoping and praying for that moment when the screen goes dark and your two pictures pop up together on the screen. You've been matched! I wonder what their kids will look like ...

Okay, so maybe that's a little much, but honestly, Tinder isn't what it used to be! Tinder started at a college party at the University of Arizona. It was based off of the game HotOrNot. This was an awesome game that allowed users to look at a little snap shot of either a girl or a guy and decide whether they were "Hot" or "Not." The shallowness of the college student never ceases to amaze. The individuals were then ranked based on the votes for everyone to see.

But wait ... what if you saw this really hot girl, or really sexy guy and you wanted to see if maybe they were interested in you? HotOrNot is completely anonymous. Do you track them down like a crazy stalker? Try and scope them out on Facebook? Essentially, any attempts you make to find this mysterious eye-candy is going to come off as straight up creepy.

In walks Tinder like the tall, dark, and handsome savior it is.

Here's the Tinder low down: You upload some cute pictures of yourself, maybe with a puppy, or on a beach, or both. You decide what you want your search radius to be, and then Tinder finds users within that area and they appear on your screen! Tinder also includes shared interests, and mutual Facebook friends (this is where things get interesting). If you find yourself mesmerized by some brooding dark eyes, or can't resist those gorgeous blonde locks, than swipe right! If you both swipe right, you've got a match! Now you two can chat away and see where the Tindering takes you. If you aren't feeling the photo, swipe left, and move on.

Back in the day, Tinder was mostly for a quick hookup: You're hot. I'm hot. We matched? Solid.

But nowadays, things are a little different. Remember the whole mutual Facebook friends thing? Well, now Tinder is spreading across college campuses faster than ... well, let's just say pretty much every college student has a Tinder account. So with the growing popularity of Tinder at universities, now it is far more likely you'll come across someone you know directly or through a friend. The stakes are changing. Now, when you see that picture, it isn't always a question of hot or not. You may know this person, or know someone who has been in a relationship, or hooked up with the person, which also could mean knowing some pretty personal details. From personal experience (yes, surprise surprise, I have a Tinder), I can say that some good looking kids have popped up on Tinder and experienced the wrath of my left swipe, because well, they aren't the best people and I just know too much about them to give them the satisfaction of a like. Does that sound mean? Well, it's true.

On the flip side, there is also the potential of matching with that secret crush you've been too nervous to talk to, or that friend who you've always been interested in but never knew if they felt the same way. Tinder matches can also strike up some hilarious conversations over Saturday brunches, and they can even be icebreakers at parties.

But beware, once you light the Tinder fire, it's hard to stop, so swipe with caution!

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