“It’s changing so much about the way we act both romantically and sexually,” Garcia says.

“It is unprecedented from an evolutionary standpoint.” As soon as people could go online they were using it as a way to find partners to date and have sex with.

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“We are in uncharted territory” when it comes to Tinder et al., says Justin Garcia, a research scientist at Indiana University’s Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction.

“There have been two major transitions” in heterosexual mating “in the last four million years,” he says.

In the 90s it was Craigslist and AOL chat rooms, then and

But the lengthy, heartfelt e-mails exchanged by the main characters in (1998) seem positively Victorian in comparison to the messages sent on the average dating app today. ’ ” says Jennifer, 22, a senior at Indiana University Southeast, in New Albany.

Some, like writer Hanna Rosin, see hookup culture as a boon: “The hookup culture is …

bound up with everything that’s fabulous about being a young woman in 2012—the freedom, the confidence.” But others lament the way the extreme casualness of sex in the age of Tinder leaves many women feeling de-valued.

“I can go on my phone right now and no doubt I can find someone I can have sex with this evening, probably before midnight.”And is this “good for women”?

Since the emergence of flappers and “moderns” in the 1920s, the debate about what is lost and gained for women in casual sex has been raging, and is raging still—particularly among women.

As the polar ice caps melt and the earth churns through the Sixth Extinction, another unprecedented phenomenon is taking place, in the realm of sex.

Hookup culture, which has been percolating for about a hundred years, has collided with dating apps, which have acted like a wayward meteor on the now dinosaur-like rituals of courtship.

“The first was around 10,000 to 15,000 years ago, in the agricultural revolution, when we became less migratory and more settled,” leading to the establishment of marriage as a cultural contract.