The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

Would you swipe right on The Hustler?

Mr. Commodore took over Tinder to find out what Vanderbilt students are looking for in a dating app.
Emery Little
Mr. C took Tinder by storm, finding out what online dating looks like in a COVID-19 world. (Hustler Multimedia/Emery Little)

Yes. You read that right. The Hustler made a Tinder. “Why?” you may ask. Well, it’s Valentine’s Day and love is in the air! Or is that actually just the dandruff falling from the sky that we’ve all collectively accepted to be snow? Who’s to judge.

Here at The Hustler, the only judging we’ve been doing was whether or not you went to Vanderbilt University. While our thumbs may be a bit tired from swiping left on every single Belmont student and “new to Nashville” man holding a fish, we loved swiping right on our fellow ‘Dores. From receiving “U up?” DMs at 10 p.m. to messages regarding our “badonkadonk,” keep reading to hear about the highlights of our dating app experience. 


The setup

You may be comforted to know that catfishing on the Internet is at least moderately difficult. We set up both Bumble and Tinder accounts using the only photos we found appropriate: Mr. C surrounded by hearts, vague images touting our Hustler logo and even a photo of Cornelius Vanderbilt in all of his glory. Tinder had no problem with an image of a high-ranking naval officer mascot swiping on hundreds of Vanderbilt-only profiles. Bumble, however, blocked us almost immediately.


Hustler Tinder profile. (Hustler Staff/Justine Del Monte)

Strictly numbers

We’re proud to announce that we had over 80 matches within our first three days out in the dating market. Bragging rights aside, we will note that straight men on Tinder were much more likely to match with us. We apologize for the gap in representation in this article, but The Hustler was content with any and all matches we received. 

We asked those that were willing to talk to us if they were a part of any other dating services. Judging by the fact that Tinder was the only app we successfully used, our findings might be a bit skewed, but data is data. Here’s the breakdown of how respondents preferred to find love virtually: 100 percent of participants used Tinder (unsurprisingly), 72 percent used Bumble, 38 percent used Datamatch, 18 percent used Hinge and one participant responded with “crying on Instagram Live” as a viable dating resource.

Additionally, we asked how many dates our matches had been on after successfully swiping right on a dating app. We had a wide variety of dating app experience, some never having actually gone on any dates versus some with five or more. 


Our experience

Despite receiving an overwhelming number of matches (flexing again), the luck pretty much ended there—which is kind of reflective of dating app experiences as a whole (at least according to a first year, who said “getting a response” at all is pretty much all they can hope for). Additionally, almost everyone willing to talk to us was unwilling to let us use their names, likely because they didn’t want people to know they had an account. If most people believe the odds of finding someone seem zero to none and wouldn’t be caught dead as a serious contender on the app, why do so many of us use dating apps? 

So we asked. Out of all the responses we gathered, only one person admitted to wanting a boyfriend. The rest gave us sarcastic answers like “to make friends and perfect my method acting” and for “shits and gigs.” One even admitted to getting on the app just to see how many matches she could get in a month as part of a competition with her friends…is all truly fair in love and war? But honestly, after hearing some of the horror stories, pick up lines and other cringey tropes people will use to get someone to swipe right, we can’t really blame them. Here are some that grabbed our attention: 


(Hustler Multimedia/Emery Litte)

Horror stories

“One time I matched with someone who told me that I was mediocre looking and overcompensating with an unlikeable personality,” a junior said.

“My date got in a car crash on his way to pick me up, and we had to go to the police station together,” a first year said. 

“A girl asked me how to construct an aquaponic system, and when I told her how, she unmatched me,” one sophomore said.


Favorite pick-up lines

“‘Are you from Tennessee, because you’re the only 10 I see.’ I like it because I’m actually from here,” a first year said. Or, my favorite alternative: “Are you from Tennessee? Cause you’re a 6,” another first year said. 

“Sorry, but I just couldn’t help but anchor down in ur DMs ⚓️⬇️,” a junior said, also noting that it hasn’t worked yet.


Here for the meme of it all

Another trend we noticed among our responses is that no one wants to make the first move. Boys told us they preferred Bumble because girls have to make the first move, and girls preferred Tinder for the same reason. However, the overall consensus was that Tinder is their favorite app due to its less serious nature. While relationships can evolve on the app, most people are looking for something casual, which takes the pressure off of DMing someone. 

This casual nature played out through our matches’ reasonings for swiping right. “She swiped right on me, beggars can’t be choosers” one junior said. Others truly appreciated the art behind crafting a humorous message. “Someone sent a picture of a crab smoking a cigarette and I thought it was funny,” a sophomore said. 

Or, our personal favorite: “One time I ran an account as Mr. C for an hour, and I got 100 likes and opened every message with some variation of ‘I’d love to Anchor Down with you!’ Then I deleted it because it felt weird. Some people were REALLY into it.”

Romance really isn’t dead, folks. 

When asked what their Valentine’s Day plans were, none of the users planned on actually trying to find someone on an app. A first year said he planned to take himself on a date (we’re all for the self-love), and a sophomore said he was going to “fill my condomgrams with water and throw them at my friends.” We’ll let those statements speak for themselves. 


Our thoughts

With the pandemic putting a halt on normal social interaction and small talk with strangers at bars, it seems that people have looked to dating apps to fill that void. After driving your living unit crazy, the practical jokesters, hopeless romantics and just plain creeps have all taken to Tinder, Bumble and Hinge as a social outlet to meet new people. Whether it be for a relationship, hookup, friendly competition to see who swipes right on who or anything in between, maybe the driving factor behind dating apps is pure boredom.

After trying our hand at the world of dating apps, we came to the conclusion that they might not be for dating after all. Before you roll your eyes at that naive assessment, we also don’t think their main purpose is for hookups either… at least not right now.

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About the Contributors
Sahanya Bhaktaram
Sahanya Bhaktaram, Former Life Copy Editor
Sahanya Bhaktaram ('23) is studying Communication Studies with minors in Business and the History of Art. She can be reached at [email protected].
Justine Del Monte
Justine Del Monte, Former Life Copy Editor
Justine Del Monte ('22) studied Public Policy. She enjoys nature, VSG, cooking videos and talking about how she's from California. Send inquiries and Broadway-related playlists to [email protected].
Emery Little
Emery Little, Former Social Media Director
Emery Little (‘22) is from Birmingham, AL. She majored in communication of science and technology and Spanish. In her free time, she loves to design graphics, follow tech news and run her photography business. She can be reached at [email protected].
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Comments (4)

The Vanderbilt Hustler welcomes and encourages readers to engage with content and express opinions through the comment sections on our website and social media platforms. The Hustler reserves the right to remove comments that contain vulgarity, hate speech, personal attacks or that appear to be spam, commercial promotion or impersonation. The comment sections are moderated by our Editor-in-Chief, Rachael Perrotta, and our Social Media Director, Chloe Postlewaite. You can reach them at [email protected] and [email protected].
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3 years ago

I like Our Time.

Aaron Gay
3 years ago

Sad that our generation is being so changed by online dating/hooking up. Too bad the days of actually having to meet people in person by talking to them are gone.

3 years ago
Reply to  Aaron Gay

I mean… there is a global pandemic right now. So when people forgo in-person dates for virtual ones, they’re literally saving lives. I can’t say I’m sad about that, even if I’ve got serious Zoom fatigue.

3 years ago

Do Grindr next