As humans, it is in our nature to seek out our perfect match in what we want to consider our human counterpart.
In a society that revolves around social networking, we have surrendered our control of the search to online dating profiles and applications that can be downloaded with a swift click of a thumb.
It seems like a convenient way to meet new and interesting people without taking a large chunk of time out of our day or forcing us to step out of our personal 360, but in reality we have put one of the most influential aspects of our lives in the hands of technology.
If we continue living in this detached and digitally charged manner, our society will be lead into a new age where we are comfortable trusting our very happiness to elusive outside sources.
This new society that may be forming outside of our peripheral blinders is perfectly described in Matched, a dystopian series of literature by author Ally Condie.
The series is set in a futuristic society where citizens are lead to believe that there is no other life on Earth because no other people perfected life the way what it is referred to as The Society has, and thus no other way to live.
The people of The Society willingly give up every personal freedom that humans are inherently born with in exchange for the promise of a perfectly content life. They live in utter monotony until their Society-set deadline with the exception of one event; The Matching Banquet.
At 17 years old, the society’s young adults are sent to a lavish celebration where they are given the identity of their life partner based on information entered into the Matching Pool by Society officials.
The method is a trusted means of finding perfect companionship, and as a result, the citizens remain blind to the corruption and chaos that becomes more and more necessary to maintain the status quo in the bubble that they call home.
They are robbed of their memory to hide uprising and shielded from their nation’s art and history to discourage the notion of independent and creative thinking.
Wars with outside lands are kept under wraps so that nobody realizes that there is anything more out there than The Society, leaving them in peaceful oblivion as they have been given everything that they have ever been taught that they needed.
This is not unlike our own present day society, where we are shielded from whatever secrets the government feels necessary to keep order in the states. As a real life contentment seeking nation of people, we cannot ignore the raw possibility that Condie has put into words the fate of the human race in America.
How much are we willing to trust our government with the details of our lives if we are given the promise of a steady and secure job, necessities of survival for our families, and a perfect partner with which to spend our adult lives? Has the transition into this new order already begun?
Many college-aged students use Tinder, a smart phone application designed to match young people with each other based on pictures, age, location and a small blurb of interests. This application is the first online dating tool marketed as socially acceptable, and many people that we perceive as “normal” have found what they consider love by using Tinder.
The application is constantly undergoing updates, presumably because our activity is being monitored by a third party and the need for change is seen.
Whoever is behind this application and it’s updates remains faceless, begging us to wonder what their motive is.
Since it is free and contains no advertisements, the existence of an ulterior motive in the creation becomes clear.
We have no way of knowing who or what is behind it, but we willingly turn on our location services, allowing whatever government affiliated organizations that may be behind the application to pinpoint our exact location at the time of use.
There is so much data to be collected from this application that can be used to fabricate a matching technique similar to that used in the book series. The application can only be used when connected to Facebook, making it easy to track how many relationships have started as a result of the Tinder technique.
We ignore the fact that there may be more than a lonely techie with a vision behind the application and that it may be a government official monitoring activity and collecting data until they can be sure that the controlled matching is going to pan out.
Our need for companionship and reluctance to start a true and organic conversation with somewhat of a stranger drives us to accept this new tool without question, leading us to a life of complete government control in every aspect. It would not take long for this data collection technique to infiltrate every part of our lives beyond who we spend those lives with, and yet we fail to see how we are being used in an experiment by whoever the mastermind is behind all of this is.
That mastermind clearly has a greater task at hand than finding love for twenty-somethings, a task that may be leading to the end of human free will.
Leah Mulroney can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org