Looking for Right Now: A Rhetorical Analysis on Gay Men’s Diction Relative to Grindr

Sawyer Henderson

Abstract


Since the turn of the century, humanity has seen the rise of multiple technology booms over the last 15 years. Although, as instant access to information has grown, so has another type of networking: Social networking. As individuals become acclimated to rapid-fire style updates bombarding them online, users want to be able to instantly give feedback, or simply provide their own instantaneous social updates for friends and family. Because of this, people have begun taking their social selves online and developing a cyber-persona, paving the way for online dating and app-based dating. Contemporary “apps” used on a smartphone have gained immense popularity in the heterosexual community with apps such as Tinder and Hinge in addition to apps in the LGBTQ+ community such as Dattch (for gay/bisexual/gender-queer women) and Grindr (for gay/bisexual/gender-queer men). However, little research has been done to analyze the effectiveness of these apps (especially in regards to the LGBTQ+ community), and how well the rhetoric used by members parallels the company’s slogan. In this paper, a rhetorical analysis on Grindr users was performed in order to determine the app’s effectiveness both as a “dating software” in addition to establishing a relationship with the company motto of “0 feet away.” In an effort to obtain accurate data, a proxy account was set up in order to view content displayed on each user’s profile. Chillingly, based on the rhetorical analyses conducted, gay, male users’ diction paralleled Grindr’s mission statement of bringing men “0 feet away from each other.”


Keywords


LGBTQ; Grindr; Georgia

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