Tinder Common Connections – An Explanation

There has been a lot of talk, controversy, and even confusion about how Tinder actually works. In fact, some of the dating app’s main features such as common connections remain a bit of a mystery to many users.

Judging by a Reddit thread about Tinder, connections seem more like Math than amorous matching. To paraphrase, A is 1st connection and B is 2nd Is there an X between A and B? Okay, this is a deliberate exaggeration. However, if you are to take a closer look at Tinder algorithm, you’ll realize there’s more Math to matching than you might expect.

This article will take you deep into the Tinder territories and disambiguate common connections.

tinder common connection

Is It a Chess Game?

A few years ago, reporter Austin Carr was allowed insider access and preview of the secretive ratings on Tinder. What’s more, he got an explanation, albeit vague, about the way the app connects users.

At the time, Tinder was using ELO rating, which is the same one that calculates chess players’ scores. In a nutshell, the more right swipes the higher your score, but the app also considered the users who right swiped you. In turn, people with a similar number of right swipes and interests got connected.

Sounds simple, right? But according to Tinder, the ELO rating is yesterday’s news and the new way that makes connections uses far more variables. There has also been some speculation that if someone who Tinder considers attractive right swipes your profile you get a much higher score.

Be that as it may, the basic principle of common connections is still pretty straightforward. Keep on reading to find out more.

Common Connections Disambiguated

Common connections is a feature that allows you to determine if you and your match have the same Facebook friend. This is also known as 1st-degree connection and, in theory, anyone on Tinder can have one or more common connections.

Of course, the more friends you have on Facebook, the greater are the chances of common connections. But, what’s the purpose of common connections? In general, they allow you to reduce the six degrees of separation to one and maybe use the common connection as a conversation starter.

What Are the 2nd-degree Connections?

Despite the 2nd-degree quantifier, these still fall into the common connections category. And again, it’s all about you and your match on Tinder. The 2nd-degree connection occurs when you and your Tinder match have two separate friends who are Facebook friends with one another.

To simplify things even further, Tinder uses the social graph and social media to tell you how far you are separated from someone. And depending on your match, you might have both 1st and 2nd-degree common connections, only one of the two, or none at all.

Where Do Common Connections Live?

As you swipe left and right on Tinder, every now and again a small group icon pops up under the user’s profile picture. Tap on that icon and you’ll be able to see your 1st and 2nd-degree connections on Facebook.

However, this feature works both ways and your profile appears as a common connection to other users, as well. However, some people don’t feel comfortable about appearing in common connections lists and this is why they choose to disable the feature.

If you don’t want your Facebook friends to see you on the app, you need to disable Tinder Social. Access Tinder settings, navigate to “Show me on Tinder Social”, and tap on the button next to the option to toggle it off.

tinder common connections

Handy Facebook Limits

You should know that without Tinder Social you minimize the chances of being invited on a date locally. So rather than disabling the feature, you can put some limits on the Facebook side.

Click on the small triangle at the upper right corner, select Settings from the drop-down menu, then click on Apps and Websites.

tinder common connections tinder

Choose Tinder and switch the App Visibility to Only Me. This way your Facebook friends and friends or your friends won’t be able to see you are on Tinder.

Why Should You Use Tinder Without Facebook?

Common connections is a neat feature designed to bring people closer together, but there are some shortcomings, as well. For example, what would you do if you saw a friend’s spouse is active on the app? The best guess is you’d tell your friend.

And then, you might stumble upon profiles of your relatives, professors, cousins, boss, etc. So, to save yourself the trouble or even embarrassment it might be best to limit the visibility to some extent.

Happy Dating

Aside from Facebook, Tinder also connects to your Instagram account. Potential matches get to preview the last 35 pictures you posted. Plus, they can go directly to your Instagram profile and check out the whole thing, though there is still no common connections feature for Instagram.

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