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Online dating is seemingly the go-to nowadays when it comes to finding long-term and casual relationships. While Hinge has been one of the most popular dating apps for this generation, its new update called “Your Turn Limits” has users beyond frustrated. 

To encourage people to reply to their current matches (or on the flip side, to unmatch them), Hinge has implemented a new rule: if you have eight or more unanswered messages, you will not be allowed to form new connections, as users can’t send new likes or accept matches. Running with their “quality over quantity” motto, Hinge wants users to take their matches more seriously rather than collect them like Pokemon cards. 

Hinge’s founder and CEO, Justin Mcleod, explained to Fast Company that this update is in response to the ghosting epidemic, stating that people ghost “because some of our users are creating a lot of matches. And the more matches you have, the less likely you are to respond.” 

The update was formulated after a recent survey was sent to Hinge users; the survey aimed to understand the various dating challenges people experienced on the app, and as a result, 44 percent of singles agreed that unresponsiveness was the main challenge they struggled with. It’s common for people to match but never enact any plans to meet in person, which is exactly the opposite of what Hinge intends for its users. 

“As Hinge is the dating app designed to be deleted, the team is committed to getting its users off their phones and onto great dates,” Hinge explained. “‘Your Turn’ reminds users when it’s their turn to respond in a conversation — which helps reduce accidental ghosting as users explore each connection.” They also posted that Hinge matches where the first message was responded to within twenty-four hours were 72 percent more likely to go out, emphasizing that their update will limit burnout and encourage users to keep talking with their existing matches. 

While Hinge means well, some users aren’t quite feeling the update. Nikki*, 24, expressed her frustrations with the app to Her Campus after the update. “Look, I get that [Hinge] is doing it to promote ‘real connections’ or whatever, but limiting my pool to eight people is wild,” Nikki says. “You have more options than that in a freaking bar.”

It’s true. Over 1,708,000 people live in her metropolitan area (Pittsburgh), and singles in much larger cities like New York, Los Angeles, and Boston might experience even more frustration with the match limit. “Forcing me to narrow down my city to eight people just feels super restricting,” she says. “I want to match with people, then talk to them on my own time. Granted, I’m not messaging more than eight people at once — but it’s the principle.” 

However, some singles believe that the update could be beneficial for singles that are looking to form more immediate connections. “On a surface level, it is a little annoying,” Jenna*, 24, tells Her Campus. “I don’t always respond right away, and this update encourages you to act a bit quicker. So, I get why they made the change: I think people do need to be encouraged to message more.” 

Instead of Hinge making the leap to this new formula, Jenna suggests that the limit should be optional based on what certain singles are looking for. “I’m still on the fence on whether or not it’ll be beneficial for what I’m looking for,” she says. “That way, I could test it out and see if it was for me or not.”

Will the feature eventually prove successful in curbing the effects of ghosting? Well, we’ll have to continue to wait and see about that, but for now, Hinge users are in the midst of navigating this new landscape in their quest for love.

Sofia is a third-year Writing & Literature major at UCSB. In her free time, she enjoys watching anime, playing video games, and drinking chai tea.