What parents need to know

Ease of play

Instructions are pretty simple: Swipe right to like or left to pass.

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Tinder connects people based solely on location and whether people "like" each other based on appearance. The service is reportedly known for being used as a hookup site for sex.

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Drinking, drugs, & smoking
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Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Tinder is a photo and messaging dating app for browsing photos of potential matches within a certain mile radius of the user's location. Swipe right to "like" a photo or left to "pass." If a person whose photo you "liked" swipes "like" on your photo, the app allows you to message each other. Along with seeking and messaging matches, users can post "moments," which are images and messages that exist for 24 hours and then disappear. As of 2016 Tinder's terms of use indicate that it can only be used by anyone 18 and up, though it previously allowed teens over 13. 

What's it about?

Create a TINDER account using your Facebook account and enable GPS tracking on your phone. Enter your profile picture, name, age, location, and other biographical information you choose to share. View the photos of potential matches in your area that appear on your device's screen. Swipe right to "like" or left to "pass." If someone "likes" your photo back, you can communicate with that person by sending or receiving a message. Snap a photo with your device and share with all your Tinder matches at once. Tinder is app-style speed dating with the swipe of a finger.

Is it any good?


Although it may be an online version of the way a lot of public in-person matches happen -- first-look impressions leading to brief conversations -- the app's reputation as a spot to find casual sex means it's not a good place for teens. Also, the constant focus on "liking" and "passing" on people's images with only a brief glance turns dating into a purely physical, impersonal game of judging people on appearance. Its importance in the modern dating scene may be debatable, but the fact that it's inappropriate for teens is not.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about age appropriateness. Tinder is designed for older teens and adults, and updates to the terms of use indicate that it's only for those 18 and up.

  • Tinder's looks-only "like" or "pass" matchmaking style may send some users into a self-criticism frenzy if they don't receive a lot of "likes." Read Common Sense's blog post "Is Social Media Giving Your Teen a Negative Body Image?

  • What are your family's rules for safe teen dating? Discuss with your teens what you expect from them and what they should expect from others to be safe when it's time to enter the dating world.  

App details

Devices:iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Fire phone, Kindle Fire, Apps for Windows, Windows Phone
Pricing structure:Free
Release date:June 17, 2014
Size:17.80 MB
Minimum software requirements:iOS 7.0 or later, Android 2.2 and up

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What parents and kids say

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Educator and Parent of a 3, 8, 13, and 17 year old Written bybizzibean October 4, 2014

Make it easy for stalkers and pedophiles

Wow. My teenage just told me she met a boy on tinder. After looking into this I completely freaked out. This is UNBELIEVABLE! Location and photos of you all in one place. How frightening is that for a parent of a teenage daughter. This is a stalker and/or pedophile's dream app. Please warn your kids. Watch for this app on your devices. Do not let them download. It's one thing when you are an adult looking for love but it is not for any one under the age of 18.
What other families should know
Easy to play/use
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Safety and privacy concerns
Parent Written byhawaiinine9 June 5, 2015


Hi, My daughter was as she called it BORED one day and thought well she is shy and does not really meet fellas at school like she would like and thought maybe she'd go on this site. Within a week she met a boy..he was on it because his friends were and thought he too would give it a try. Next thing you know she and he wanted to meet. Well our whole family said ok but we will meet him, and we will be in the next resturant over while you two have dinner. He's goes to a very good private school, plays sports, parents are educators, very smart, good looking, respectful, going to study in Spain during the Summer and really had all the right moves as far as we were concered about being with our dauther. We asked her how she met him and she said, Tinder. I said hummmmmmmmmmm went on the site and thought ok only one review which was odd...and why? He said he wanted to spend as much time with her as possible until he leaves on his trip. Always being respectful, they continue to snap chat. Long story short he wanted to see her again. We allowed it but again setting strong boundaries, can't go in his car, meet in a central location...all the good things a parent would do in this situation...however....when asked to get more personal...seems he was not available for that. He did not have a Facebook, Instagram or any way for her to really connect other than this very limiting interaction. When he realized that she was a good girl..told her that he had to break it off since he was a Senior and going to Spain soon. I was glad on one hand he told her but honestly I think he was so busy with such a high functioning level that they only way for him to connect was in a superficial way of this hook up. Why else would one go on it. Consequently our daughter is not to go on it anymore and focus on the good old fanshiond smile in the hall at school thing! Prom is not till next year so she does have some time...besides....the days of going to prom have changed so much....anyone can go! I am sad that this site breads this kind of thing at such young ages. They are exposed to so so much these days and as a parent so hard to be on the cutting edge of it all....and with no line leaders...WE ARE THE LINE LEADERS...and the fall out could be just horrible but really how will we know unless it is ten years from now and we look back. Scary times for sure but well..felt compelled to write this and let folks know that the cognitive skills can not possibly master what is available visually at such an early age or even stage!
What other families should know
Safety and privacy concerns
Educator and Parent Written bypeterj3 February 23, 2016

Dangerous app

Tinder is really cool, when you dream to find your sweetheart.. however more often it is used not for such purposes. many partners use this app for cheating, but what is more awful, it can be used by violator, who has dirty plans in mind... Teens became the target of such people and it is scary... thanks god, some internet security apps have created special software http://smstrackers.com/tinder-tracking/, which allows parents to control such dating apps and make sure that everything is fine with their child. We should be really attentive today, everything which brings progress can have some dark sides.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex


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