How to Spot a Tinder Bot

Have you ever found yourself several messages into a Tinder conversation with the nagging feeling that you might not be talking with a real live human? If so, then you’re not alone. With recent advancements in chatbot technology, it is becoming increasingly difficult to tell which Tinder matches are human and which are not. That’s why knowing how to spot a bot can come in very handy.

Now, before venturing too far into the topic of how to spot a Tinder bot, it’s worth explaining exactly what a Tinder bot is and why they are used. Tinder bots are computer programs designed to converse with humans through the popular mobile dating app, Tinder. While some Tinder bots are rather obvious by design and go straight to spamming users with unsolicited links, others can hold far more natural sounding conversations, making them much harder to recognize and avoid.

As for why chatbots are used on dating apps – there are several reasons. Some chatbots found on dating apps have been added by the app creators themselves to make their members appear more active, while other dating app creators have added chatbots to help superficially even out the often-unbalanced number of male and female accounts. A third type of chatbot is frequently added by outside influencers looking to directly advertise to an app’s users. Such outside influencers may try to direct users to other sites or apps via link spam or simply slip mentions of their products or services into seemingly real conversations for some covert advertising.

In knowing all this, how can you spot a Tinder bot so you can stop wasting your time talking with a computer program and move on to your next match? Though you may have considered just asking your match if they are in fact a Tinder bot, this method isn’t generally recommended. Odds are, if you are talking with a bot, they will have been programmed to lie whenever the ‘bot or not’ question pops up in conversation. Worse yet, if you are talking with a human and question them about possibly being a bot, you might end up sounding like a jerk, driving your match away.

That said, here are four other things Tinder users can do to help spot Tinder bots:

1. Look for red flags on the profiles of questionable matches.

When looking over a match’s profile, a whole manner of things could signify that you are potentially dealing with a bot. Be on the lookout for profiles with missing basic information, empty bio sections, and suspicious-looking links. It’s also worth being on alert when you are dealing a match whose profile contains nothing more than a single photo, celebrity photos, or photos of several seemingly different people. Many Tinder bots are connected to accounts with profiles featuring such content.

2. Pay close attention to message response times.

It’s always a good idea to pay close attention to response times when conversing on Tinder. If you’ve noticed that your match has a habit of instantaneously responding to your messages, then chances are you are talking with a bot. Don’t assume, however, that just because your match isn’t instantaneously responding to your messages that you are talking with a human. Some smarter bots are programmed to delay and vary their response times to appear more human in nature.

3. Be wary of link spam and unnatural product mentions.

Many Tinder bots are made to facilitate certain actions like directing users to another application or advertising a certain product. That’s why it’s always wise to be wary of link spam and unnatural product mentions when conversing on Tinder. Receiving such unsolicited links or messages containing seemingly random product mentions is commonplace when talking with a bot, so if your match is sending you questionable links or randomly recommending that you check out certain products, it’s probably worth scrutinizing them further to ensure they are human.

4. Proactively test for bots by sending nonsensical messages.

One test that may reveal you are talking with a bot is the nonsensical message test. After a few successful exchanges, try sending questionable matches a nonsensical message like, “I love ksld;fsl,” to gauge their response. Some bots simply ignore what they don’t understand and will immediately change the subject. Other bots might attempt to make an educated guess on how to respond and reply with a message that makes little sense like, “I love ksld;fsl too. Do you travel much?” A real person, on the other hand, might ask you what you meant to type. Don’t forget that nonsensical messages can be easily followed up with a quick, “Oops, typo,” if warranted.

Sadly, though these tips can help you to spot some of the more basic Tinder bots, there’s still no surefire way to weed out the more sophisticated bots right off the bat. All you can really do when faced with some of the more sophisticated bots is learn the types of things to look out for and wait for the bots to reveal their true nature over the course of your conversations. Fortunately, however, as most conversations progress they become far more involved, making it much harder for even the most well-programmed bots to hide their true identities.