Would you believe that Tinder has over 75 million users? It’s true-to the tune of $1.6 billion in revenue in 2021. Of all the people who have installed Tinder on their smartphones, about 35% of them log on to the dating app daily. Nearly twice that many, or 69%, check to see who they’ve matched with every month.
Tinder’s swipe-right or -left approach was novel when it was first introduced in 2012. Once the two parties are in touch with one another and decide to meet up, however, the subsequent in-person encounter plays out like any other date. There are the same sweaty palms, awkward moments, possible chemistry, and doorstep kisses. And there’s the same potential for the evening to take a disastrous turn, including physical or sexual assault.
Questions of Consent At the Heart of Assault Cases
Most hookups that happen through apps like Tinder or Bumble are consensual, but meeting a virtual stranger you’ve only interacted with online always carries risks. There is the risk that your Tinder match will misread your nonverbal cues-or ignore them altogether-and try to turn your dinner date into a sexual encounter. On the flip side, there’s also the risk that your Tinder match will accuse you of aggressive and unwanted sexual contact. Both situations can be devastating.
Even in the era of #MeToo and widespread crackdowns on people who commit sexual assault and similar crimes, navigating the muddy waters of consent can be tricky. There’s nothing like a cold, formal request like “May I kiss you now?” or “I’d like to touch your leg, is that OK?” to kill the mood. And sometimes, the chemistry is so palpable that consent seems obvious, even if it’s unspoken.
Scenarios involving physical contact run the gamut, naturally, between completely consensual and, on the other end of the spectrum, so nonconsensual that it constitutes a crime. But everything in between essentially boils down to a “he said, she said” situation.
Your Word Against Theirs
The spotlight that’s recently been shone on sexual assault and sexual harassment is necessary and welcome. Far too many people have been victimized by those who have authority or power over them. And it’s absolutely appropriate that anyone who commits an atrocity of this nature should be prosecuted and duly punished.
However, some innocent people are bound to get swept up in the net, Tinder users included. One individual may misread a signal from the other and act accordingly. Not infrequently, the accusatory party constructs an incident out of whole cloth-for reasons that have only to do with their beliefs and psychological state and nothing to do with the other’s actions.
Have You Been Accused of Sexual Assault by a Tinder Match?
If, after meeting in person, one of your Tinder matches accuses you of assault or abuse, it’s tempting to contact that person. You might think an apology or an explanation of your thought process and behavior will clear things up. That’s possible, of course, but it’s equally possible that you’ll only worsen the situation. Don’t contact your accuser or make any statement to proclaim your innocence.
Instead, call us. The attorneys at Razumich & Associates will step in, advise you on how to proceed, and let you know if you need their help and legal experience. Click here or call 317-983-5333 to schedule a consultation.