What dating trends tell us after two years of the pandemic

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The Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic has changed many aspects of our lives. This is an undeniable fact. It's not just that people have become more serious about their health and don't take it as lightly as they used to. There is something else… It is not for nothing that this period, which was difficult in every way, was called the “loneliness pandemic”. Due to quarantine restrictions and mass self-isolation, millions of people around the world were literally locked between four walls. Live communication was kept to a minimum and it was not possible to make new acquaintances in person.

Fortunately, effective vaccines now exist and we continue to build mass immunity. However, immunity to Covid-19 still does not give us immunity to loneliness. And sometimes, that one is much more dangerous than a virus.

However, today we are not going to talk so much about loneliness and its consequences, but about how Covid-19 has changed the entire web dating industry. Let's take a look at the sites and apps that have skyrocketed in popularity over the last couple of years. And also take a look at some of the interesting functions of dating services, whose existence was, to some extent, triggered by Covid-19.

Online relationships as the main trend of living in self-isolation

It is quite logical that the lack of communication in the real world has forced people to go online. In large numbers. Already in 2020, many online dating and communication sites showed an increase in the number of users of between 20-30%, some even more.

Let's take a look at what these online platforms are and why they attracted more new users during the pandemic.

Social networks

  • Instagram — one of the most popular social networks that has found itself in a rather ambiguous position. On the one hand, users actively used Instagram out of boredom, but on the other hand, there was a lot of content that was impossible to create because of mass isolation, so there was no rapid growth in the popularity of the social network.
  • Facebook — the biggest social network, which, however, has been losing users in recent years, in addition to the fact that those who remain are less active than before. Recently, on Joe Rogan's podcast, Meta (former Facebook) owner Mark Zuckerberg admitted that he is tired of managing Facebook and wants to pay more attention to its metaverse.
  • TikTok — the true phenomenon among modern social media, which, even before the pandemic, was already showing rapid growth in its audience. In 2019-2020, interest in TikTok grew at lightning speed. Short videos proved to be the perfect format for alone time. So much so that video assets competing with TikTok have appeared on all popular platforms: Instagram (Reels), YouTube (Shorts), etc.
  • YouTube — a video hosting service that was also popular before the pandemic, but whose popularity increased significantly during it. The growth was 10-25%, which is quite a lot by the standards of a large platform. However, YouTube has been hit by the pandemic in the same way as Instagram. It has become much more difficult for many authors to create new content, especially travel bloggers, whose lives have been greatly affected by Covid-19.

Apps for relationships and communication

  • Tinder — one of the most popular dating services in the world, on which the audience has become 60-70% more active during the pandemic, according to the developers themselves. But at the same time, there were people who, on the contrary, abandoned online dating, realizing that during quarantine and self-isolation, the prospects for real dating were almost impossible. Now the situation is more or less back to normal. By the way, Tinder even has a special badge indicating whether the user is vaccinated or not.
  • bumble — a dating app where only women can initiate communication. He also became more popular during the pandemic, especially with girls, who prefer a more comfortable environment and not feel the pressure of more obsessive men.
  • Hinge — another popular online dating service that has seen some user growth. The developers emphasize that Hinge uses a unique compatibility algorithm that has received the Nobel Prize in the past. This “scientific” approach has been quite tempting for users who are ready for a serious relationship.

camera chats

  • omegle — a free anonymous video chat that tripled its audience during the pandemic! Before the coronavirus, there were usually around 10,000 people online at one time, but in early 2020 there were around 30,000. However, the developers did not improve or update their video chat in any way, which did not suit many. Thus, alternatives to Omegle also started to increase their number of users.
  • OmeTV — a simple Omegle alternative with a basic genre filter. It works less well than on omeglebrazil.com because users don't confirm their personal details and the algorithm is very easy to fool. But since there is no genre filter in Omegle, OmeTV is more interesting and functional in comparison. A built-in message translator is also present.
  • Tinychat — a video streaming service that has also shown good growth rates during the pandemic. It is not very suitable for dating, but it allows you to watch interesting live streams or create your own streams.
  • Bad luck — a cross between a dating app, an anonymous video chat, and a messenger. A good option for those who need “all in one”. On the other hand, the abundance of functions and communication formats can put some people off. During the pandemic, its developers have been actively working (and continue to work) to improve the service, so it's worth monitoring its development.

What will happen to online relationships when the pandemic ends?

Indeed, another question is important here: will the Covid-19 pandemic end? Many researchers believe that humanity will no longer be able to completely eradicate Covid-19. The virus gradually mutates, forming new variants against which vaccines are less effective. The nature of these viruses is such that over time they become more contagious but less dangerous. Therefore, it is likely that Covid-19 will become as common as the seasonal flu. Of course, it will still be dangerous to health, but not like it was in 2020.

When we finally "get along" with the coronavirus, the demand for online dating may actually decline. But over the last couple of years, so many people have become so used to the online dating format that it will now be with us forever. After all, meeting someone on the web is easier, more convenient and safer. It's often even more effective than trying to start a conversation with a stranger face-to-face.

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