Twine, a free app available for both iPhone and Android, is a new take on the idea of the dating app. Similar to Tinder, a dating app that matched you with others based on their picture which ran rampant at Boston College last semester, Twine offers its users matches with others in their area, but without any visual cues.
Linked through Facebook, Twine uses the interests listed on each user's account as a method for determining matches. These include entries such as favorite music, movies, TV shows and books, and can also be edited on the application itself. However, when two individuals are matched, each profile picture is blurred so as to maintain a kind of anonymity between the two. This forms the foundation of the Twine idea: “Flirt first, reveal later.”
When two people are matched, each will receive a notification, and the option to compose a message will appear so that the two can get to know each other before “revealing” themselves. Twine even offers “ice-breaking” conversation starters inspired by mutual interests.
In an ideal world, two matched individuals begin talking, and eventually get to know each other. At one point in the conversation, one might request the other to reveal his or herself. It is then up to the other person to accept that request and display his or her profile picture.
With this feature, Twine hopes to stimulate a genuine conversation without the influence of the physical looks of either person. In this way, two people who otherwise might not have met have the opportunity to establish a relationship based solely upon their personalities.
Twine, unlike Tinder, aims for “quality over quantity” so a person can only be matched with three individuals each day. This way, instead of mindlessly swiping through an endless stream of “singles in your area,” Twine encourages its users to get to know their matches.
When asked, several Boston College students said they had never heard of Twine. Upon explanation of the app, the idea of a blurred profile picture was often met with hesitation. The tagline of the app, “never miss an interesting stranger,” came across as more creepy than enticing, and the idea of a blind date seemed a bit strange given its Internet forum.
Since Twine was only recently released, its trajectory at BC remains unclear. While it strives to encourage meaningful conversation and a potential relationship between two interested parties, it still maintains the casual “just for fun” feeling that was associated with Tinder.
Tinder became a sensation across the Boston College campus because it was fun, easy and casual. Twine however, combines the casual qualities of Tinder with those of a more serious dating app. Once a user has been matched with three individuals, they run out of “Twine juice” and must wait a given number of hours before they can be matched again, which, unlike Tinder, makes for a short-lived night of post-mod Twine-ing.
It remains to be seen how Twine will fair at BC, but it does provides an alternative to Tinder by creating an environment which is conducive to more meaningful conversation, and, perhaps, relationships.
Featured image via woohoo_megoo/Flickr.