What is the Tinder ELO score? The 'desirability rating' is no longer used by the dating app

25 February 2020, 17:21

What is the Tinder Elo score?
What is the Tinder Elo score? Picture: Igor Golovniov/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images, Tim Robberts via Getty Creative

By Katie Louise Smith

Is the Tinder "desirability rating" still being used? A tweet about the infamous Elo score is circulating on Twitter and everyone is freaking out.

Ever wondered what your Tinder "desirability rating" is? Did you even know there was such a thing? Has your reckless swiping lowered your impressive Elo score? What the hell even is an Elo score? Thanks to a tweet from Twitter user @abbygov, the internet is currently freaking out about the whole thing.

A tweet posted yesterday (Feb 24) explained that "dating apps suggest people to match with you based on secretly calculated attractiveness scores". Of course, Twitter users then began losing it in the @ replies but just how true is that statement?

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According to Tinder, this isn't actually new info. The 'Elo score' has been a thing for years now and back in 2019, the dating app claimed that they no longer use it on their service. But what does it all mean anyway?

What is the Tinder Elo score?

In a blog post, Tinder wrote: "It was a part of our algorithm that considered how others engaged with your profile.

"While our matching system cares about what you like and how you 'Like' or 'Nope' profiles, it also cares about how your potential matches do, too. If it didn’t, then it wouldn’t be very good at making matches (more than 30 billion to date, btw) and helping you form new connections.

"Based on those profile ratings you received, there was a 'score' — in the sense that it was represented with a numeric value in our systems so that it could factor into the other facets in our algorithm."

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Basically, as broken down by Vox, your Elo score is based on the scores of those who swiped right on you. "The more right swipes that person had, the more their right swipe on you meant for your score," says the publication.

Tinder then shows you potential matches based on your Elo score. If you have a high Elo score, you're more likely to be shown potential matches who also have a high Elo score. The algorithm works to show you people that are 'similar' to you.

Does Tinder still use the Elo score or "desirability rating"?

Back in March 2019, Tinder claimed that they no longer use the Elo score on their platform. Published in a blog post detailing the Elo score, the dating app explained how the Elo score previously affected algorithms.

It read: "A few years ago, the idea of an 'Elo score' was a hot topic among users and media alike. And sometimes, it still is. Here’s the scoop: Elo is old news at Tinder. It’s an outdated measure and our cutting-edge technology no longer relies on it."

TL;DR, the Elo score does exist, and Tinder did use it, but it is now apparently longer part of the app.

Debby Ryan via Giphy

Do other dating apps use the Elo score?

Most dating apps keep their algorithms and methods a secret, so it's not clear whether other apps are using a similar scoring system.

Bumble does not appear to use the Elo score but it does have a payment feature (much like other dating apps) that puts you at the top of the swipe page for 30 minutes, just like Tinder's 'Boost'. Bumble's 'Spotlight' costs two Bumble Coins to access the feature. Basically, there are several ways to bump up your visibility on the app.

Hinge is said to look at your swipes, and offers up other users that are similar to those you've previously liked.

So... the Elo score might not exist anymore but there's still so many hidden techniques that could have an affect on your swipes and those who swipe on you.