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I was looking for a partner — cute, funny, driven, successful — and eventually a home, a family, maybe even a Nissan hybrid crossover.While I had used some apps before — Ok Cupid, Grindr and Tinder — others like The League, Coffee Meets Bagel and Happn were completely new to me.But for every upstanding guy who wined and dined me, I stumbled upon many more weirdos (and spam bots). After 17 dates in 30 days, did one of these apps help me find love?"],"extended_options":,"id":"57479a9b6df6120a3f0004e1","id_string":"19su55l6v19su55l7bh01g","template":"Chapter Text Template","url":,"version":"0"},,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,]' data-title='I tried 13 dating apps in 30 days in search of love' data-version='751' data-wp-author-id=''I am a 32-year-old Netflix-addicted, dessert-loving gay man living in San Francisco."The League is doing a great job of connecting people [who] will actually meet in person, a novelty for the dating app culture nowadays," Founder Amanda Bradford told me.According to Bradford, tens of thousands of people now use The League in New York and San Francisco.What I found was that they enabled a fickle shopping mentality, a Seinfeldian-level of nitpickiness.
Sometimes, getting around the home screen is a stuttery affair, and profile pics don't always load when they should. At least once a day, I got a message from a buff-looking guy named "Alex," "Chase," "Troy" or "uhornylookingfornow." Sometimes they were wearing clothes, and other times they weren't. " he continued, referring to alkyl nitrites, a popular muscle-relaxing drug. Ten seconds later, Manuel bolts for the door, arguing he no longer feels "comfortable" with the situation. Grindr's early success with GPS-based "connections" inspired a crop of alternatives, including Jack'd, Hornet, Guy Spy and Scruff.
Once you get off the waitlist, which currently stands at more than 100,000 people, the app presents up to five matches per day in a clean, straightforward interface. (Mutual likes open up a digital chat window that closes after 21 days.)Critics have called The League a "Tinder for elitists," a dating app only for Ivy League-types.
I haven't found the app to be quite that exclusive, but where Grindr emphasizes people's physical characteristics and statistics in profiles, and Ok Cupid plays up aspects such as interests, The League highlights users' education and jobs first.
Also, many of the guys on Grindr — even the ones supposedly seeking relationships — didn't actually want more. After three or four cocktails at a bar in the Castro neighborhood, Manuel came over to my apartment. There's a lot of overlap with users; many of the same people on Grindr were also on Jack'd and Hornet.
The one exception to that rule was Scruff, an app for guys with beards (and possibly more hair in other areas, hence the app's name).
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More than half of all matches engage in conversation, and almost one-third of matches try to meet up IRL.