Dating in the digital age

Marit Erickson, Staff Reporter

Dating in high school can be hard. Despite being surrounded by eligible singles every day, finding “the one” is more difficult than meets the eye. 

In response, increasing numbers of students are downloading dating apps to get cuffed.

Naturally, the generation most acquainted with technology would rely upon online alternatives to find love. According to the Pew Center of Research, around half (48%) of 18 to 29-year-olds in the U.S. report to have used a dating site. 

Still, are these 18+ apps truly beneficial for a high school student? 

One major appeal behind dating apps is that shy types can find confidence in chatting with other singles. The protection of a screen the ability to ghost someone if they don’t interest you; make dating seem less intimidating.

On the other hand, some argue dating apps can be awkward. Flirting with someone you barely know could be hard to navigate. 

Creating a fake profile is easy, and often this power is abused. 

“Roughly seven-in-ten online daters believe it is very common for those who use these platforms to lie to try to appear more desirable,” says the Pew Research Center. 

Catfishing isn’t a new phenomenon, but it has different implications when considering its effects on high school students. 

For instance, an 18-year-old could unknowingly be engaging with a forty-year-old on Tinder. Despite this technically being legal, the maturity gap between these two age groups is significant. 

Furthermore, online dating apps are significantly more dangerous for women. 

According to Psychology, Today, women are much more likely to be victims of catfishing than men. 

If you’re under 18, don’t worry about missing out on these online networking opportunities. Many under 18 apps have risen in popularity in recent years. Most notably, “Yubo” provides teens with the opportunity to meet new people outside their school district. 

Many concerns have arisen around the internet regarding social networking apps and their effect on young people. 

However, one thing many adults don’t take into consideration is the substantial knowledge most teens possess when dealing with online scams. 

Most Gen Zers are reasonably competent in spotting something too good to be true. Sheer familiarity from repeated encounters, combined with the significant education we’ve received in school regarding the dangers of the internet, has created a healthy preparedness for teens online.