Caring for the Environment Could get you More Dates

Some people use their bio to talk about their love of dogs or future plans to climb mount Everest.

Turns out there’s a new topic of choice when it comes to trying to find love online: climate change

It’s a hot topic and the anxiety surrounding climate change has led to a new dating term: Thunberging. 

Who is Greta Thunberg and what is Thunberging, exactly? 

Inspired by 17-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg who has spoken at the UN and various other international stages, and coined by OkCupid, Thunberging is defined as, “where daters bond over their passion for the environment and climate change.”

So who is this girl exactly?

Greta Thunberg is a Swedish environmental activist who has inspired an international movement to fight climate change. In May 2018, when Greta was 15, she won a climate change essay competition in a local newspaper and three months later she began protesting in front of the Swedish parliament building.

Pretty impressive, isn't it?

Man standing on rocks in calm water looking out at a stunning sunset.

While Greta will have to wait at least another year before she finds herself near a dating app but that hasn’t stopped her from inspiring some new trends.

It’s kind of exciting right? Dating apps like Plenty of Fish release yearly updates of new and trendy dating terms in hopes of creating the next “ghosting”. But unfortunately, a lot of them tend to describe the negative sides of dating online. 

Ghosting is all about someone swiftly removing themselves from your life with no explanation and no closure. And other terms like Whiteclawing describe people who stay with someone they find boring just because they’re attractive. 

They really paint a positive picture for the future of dating apps, huh?

Finally though, we have a dating term that describes the positive side of dating apps. 

Are people really using dating apps to discuss climate change? YES!

A person wearing a pink top hugging green leaves - all you can see are the person's hands and surrounding the leaves, standing amongst other leaves.

According to a recent story in the Guardian, “mentions of climate change and the environment on profiles have increased by 240% over the past two years, with millennials and Gen Z the most concerned.” Words like “climate change,” “environment,” “global warming,” “Greta Thunberg” and “recycle” are popping up in profiles like never before. In 2019 they even saw an 800% increase in mentions of Greta Thunberg specifically.

On top of that, a questionnaire done by OkCupid revealed that 51% of respondents said the climate crisis was the issue that mattered most to them. More so than world peace, the economy and eradicating disease.

When Tinder released their report, Year in Swipe it revealed that the climate crisis is one of the most popular topics mentioned in bios, especially among Gen Z.

“With climate change becoming a major talking point globally, we're finding more and more people's passion for the planet is becoming a steamy subject,” said a spokesperson for OkCupid in an interview with Yahoo Style UK. “It's no surprise to learn that young Gen Z and millennial daters care about climate change, but within the last year alone, these singletons are matching on the basis of this topic more than ever.”

Filtering out Non-Eco Friendly Matches

A sign at a protest that says "Eco not Ego" with the green coloured eco word pointed at drawings of nature, and the red coloured "ego" word pointing to symbols of a person

In fact, climate change has become such a hot topic in the dating world that OkCupid even went so far as to allow users to filter out climate change deniers from their potential matches. 

“Since your match percentage with someone shows how compatible you two are, if you are a climate change activist and they think climate change is fake news, your match percentage is going to decrease,” Michael Kaye, OkCupid’s Global Communication Manager, told Gizmodo

Needless to say, OkCupid’s latest addition to the app is going to take a serious toll on climate change deniers’ dating lives.

If you’re guilty of Thunberging, don’t be afraid to mention it in your bio. Caring about the earth isn’t something to be ashamed of. The planet is important and people want to hear your take on the environment.

So next time you think about mentioning your plans to backpack across Europe, maybe add that you’ll be taking public transit as much as possible and avoiding cheap souvenirs (all while using a reusable water bottle of course)!

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