Grindr, Tinder, Hornet, OkCupid…so many choices! Dating applications are becoming part of our lives today. After a long day of working, what better than going back home, taking our shoes off, diving into our phone (what we may have already been doing all day long), and satisfying our ego for some of us and our desires for others ? Gay hookup appears mostly virtual nowadays…our natural shyness is strengthened by the distance that applications put between us. According to a last-year article of Time Magazine, “these apps provide many advantages: you save time on bad blind dates and boring conversations, y
ou can connect to someone anytime you feel lonely, and if you are rejected you simply move on to the next person”. These advantages are representative of our society. Everything goes fast, globalization, commercial and money transactions from one part of the world to an other, social networks… Many aspects of our lives indirectly influence our social behaviour, and we’re progressively forgetting how to connect to each other without technical means. Here intervenes once more the contemporary dilemma between men and machines. Synonym of progress and modernity, big cities such as Paris, New York, Berlin, Milan, Los Angeles, and London are since always attractive destinations for provincials and even more for gay guys who look for more personal emancipation, far from their retrograde little town. Living in a big city presents several advantages but also many inconvenients which have an impact on gay hookup in a way. If social link appears stronger in few populated towns, a paradox becomes into view since years in megalopolis: there are so many ways to connect that anybody is really connected to each other. In fact we become more and more hard-handed because we have too many offers, nothing can easily reach or please us, and at the end we’re sadly realizing that any choice has been made but only a deep and empty consumption. It looks like a vicious circle. Taking the example of Paris. INSEE, the french organisation in charge of census, indicates in its recent report that the city includes six millions of people. And according to CBNews, 64% of french people own a smartphone. With those figures, we can deduce that focusing exclusively on the gay community, gays must have an easy access to dating applications. Of course, gay applications can help in creating a friendship or professional network, but most of users install them to find a boyfriend or a temporary company. Nevertheless, many of us think that gay hookup’s becoming devaluated through instant gratification, multiplication of choices, and saving time. Traditional dating methods are supplanted by virtual relationships.
Why should we go to “meaningless” conversations when we have a hundred guys at our fingertips ? First because experience proved that traditional (gay) hookup could make couples last longer. Second. Focusing on one person instead of being dependant of our dating applications notifications helps in building a stable relationship. And third, is there something better than learning to know someone in real life instead of having systematic robotised questions such as “hi…what’s up…what are you looking for…where do you live…or you free…” ? This list is absolutely not exhaustive and representative of gay hookup forms all around the world, but it conceptualizes an idea of healthier and more real relationships which could in a way crystallizes sex-centered stereotypes.
In response to those cliché, why should not we mix sex with fashion as an alternative of virtual dating ? Having dating codes to match with fashion interests ? As dating applications, fashion is also part of our lives. That’s X-ITER team’s mission: spreading a dating fashion codes system in real life in order to gather people and reinforce social link in our community.