Psychology of dating websites
Hibberd concurs there could also be a perpetual "grass is greener" attitude inherent in date shopping culture: "You can hold in your head an ideal, and different profiles suggest that ideal might still be out there, which could have an impact.
The notion that "opposites attract" is completely bulldozed over, for the quite legitimate fear of inundating each dater with people they will absolutely despise.But is dating online that different from the traditional methods on a psychological level?For those actively looking for a relationship (or at least no-strings fun), there is no shortage of websites available, from straight up dating sites like OKCupid, e Harmony and Match to niche communities like Tastebuds (music matching), JDate (for Jewish singles) and even the eyebrow raising Clown Passions (you can guess).While categories such as "through friends", "in a bar", and "at school/work" were either declining or holding steady, one category has exploded in the last decade: "met online".According to these stats, 20 percent of heterosexual couples sampled, and nearly 70 percent of same-sex couples met this way and its growth shows no signs of abating.Traditional dating is perceived as a danger to us because it involves so much uncertainty.
When I first saw the movie “You’ve Got Mail” at the ripe old age of 8, the idea of developing a relationship through online chatrooms seemed novel, unconventional and even…creepy?
This is of course, one of the most striking differences between online dating and meeting someone in a bar: you're armed with all kinds of information about your date, albeit only what they decide to share on a semi-public forum, with room for dishonesty by omission.
If a couple sends a few messages back and forth and then decide to meet, they go into their first date possibly knowing a dizzying amount of information about their one another.
The study concludes that these small lies were not merely self-deceptions, but deliberate.
While most daters I surveyed claimed honesty in their profiles (any eventual meetup would be short-lived if they weren't), one did raise an interesting point about subjectivity: "I'm honest in so far as anyone can be objective about themselves".[Quote"]When a subscription is involved people are more keen to progress offline to actual dates and abusive messages are at a minimum[/pullquote]My questions also raised some interesting views about paid sites against unpaid, with three distinct themes emerging when a subscription is involved: people tend to be looking for something more serious, they're more keen to progress offline to actual dates and abusive messages are at a minimum.
A recent paper from the Association of Psychological Science was pretty clear that there's little evidence for any matching algorithm's scientific merit ("no compelling evidence supports matching sites" claims that mathematical algorithms work"), but the OKCupid users I spoke to generally seemed to believe there was something in it -- even if it was just filtering out their polar opposites.