Impact of Online Dating on Society

Online dating apps  and sites have taken the dating world  by storm. Its seems that nowadays everyone has an online dating profile and some people actively use it to meet new people and start relationships. What is even more interesting is that in its beginning no one really expected online dating to be as impactful.

Online dating has been around since digital communication between people became a common activity online. The first large scale computer dating system was called The Scientific Marriage Foundation which was founded in 1957 by Dr George W. Crane. It worked by processing forms that applicants filled out in an early IBM card sorting machine. If you ask me that seems like such a complicated process compared to today’s dating website and apps where finding a match is just a swipe away.

In its beginning there was a negative stigma associated with online dating. People felt meeting online was an unrealistic way to form relationships. It was considered to be a shameful act and something you wouldn’t admit to doing. Research done on online dating showed that people felt that it was a subpar way of meeting people. However as depicted in the chart below  it is apparent how the attitude towards online dating has changed .

People have become more comfortable meeting other people online and that is reflected by the boom on the online dating industry. More people view online dating has a good way to meet new people and the stigma that those who use online dating sites are desperate has decreased.

Just how Impactful is Online dating?

Well let me throw some facts at you.

In the United States alone one in every ten adult has used an online dating site or app.   About 66% of online daters have been on a date with someone they met on the dating site. 5% of Americans who are married or in a committed relationship met their partners online. In 2008, 120,000 marriages were attributed to online dating services. In the year 2007 the online dating industry was a 1.07 billion dollar industry and by 2012 it had grown into a 1.65 billion dollar industry that is still growing.

The fact that online dating  is a billion dollar industry should tell you just how big of an impact it has had on society. People generally tend to go on dates and are pretty open to meeting new people. However this process is a lot easier said than done.Often times people do not have time to go to the bar or are too busy with work to find someone they can begin a relationship with.  What online dating does is make the process easier and less tedious for people.

This brings me  to my next point which is Why  people use online dating sites and applications.

There are many elements that contribute to why people gravitate to online dating but a big reason can be attributed to technology.

We live in the age of technology . Most of the things we do is online so it was only a matter of time that we started dating  online as well. Online dating wouldn’t be online dating without the internet and the use of computers. Users that have access to the internet could create online profiles on dating sites which allowed them to meet new people who shared the same interests as them.

To take it a step further online dating  transitioned into mobile dating. Users could now access dating sites through apps on their phone. Why was this such an advantage you may ask ? Well its simple people could meet potential partners while they were on the go. They no longer had to be in front of a computer screen to use dating sites.

As far as choices for users there is no shortage of dating apps and sites.  There are hundreds of dating sites and applications out there with Tinder, eHarmony,  OKcupid, Match.com, and Zoosk  being just a few of the many successful dating applications. Users gravitate to these application for many reasons but the significant ones are that they are easy to use and there are many people on these sites which increases their chances of finding someone. Additionally for those who are not comfortable with meeting people for the first time and engaging in a conversation, online dating allows the user to engage in conversations and get to know each other online before actually meeting in person.

All in all what online dating does is that it gives people a better chance of meeting someone who could be a potential partner without the limitation of proximity and based on the success of the industry it is doing a pretty decent job of bringing people together. However with most  good  things in society there is always something negative associated with it and online dating is no exception.

Online dating has been an avenue for singles to meet but the behaviors that are exhibited on these sites can be harmful. On online dating sites users have been known to lie on their profiles. Some of these lies can be as small as exaggerating height or as big as  lying about their occupation. Some of these lies may seem harmless but starting a relationship based of lies is doomed to fail.

I thought you said we were the same height

Top Ten Lies that men and women tell

Men

  1. job (better than it is)
  2. Height (taller)
  3. Weight (losing a few pounds)
  4. Physique (athletic)
  5. Money
  6. More senior than they really are at work
  7. Interesting profession
  8. Knowing celebrities
  9. Having an assistant or employees
  10. Working in the film industry

Women

  1. Weight (losing a few pounds)
  2. Age (losing a few years)
  3. Physique (toned)
  4. Height
  5. Money
  6. Breast size 
  7. Glamorous profession
  8. Knowing celebrities
  9. Having an assistant or employees
  10. Working in entertainment

Why Lie?

According to professor Rose McDermott a political science professor at Brown University people lie because they are insecure. He describes it has human nature to present ourselves in a manner that others are more likely to be attracted to.  As you can see from the list above men and women tend to lie about different things with only a few exceptions. This type of behavior stems from the pressure to present themselves in the most desirable way possible.

In their search for love they tend to forget about the more important elements of dating which is to stay true to themselves and find someone who likes the qualities that are true about them.

Online dating websites and sites are always going to be the rise as long as people are still in search for partners. Its impact is undeniable and although it has presented some undesirable behavior it still serves an important purpose in society.

 

Feel free to follow me on twitter at the handle @king_Kofi for updates. I will be posting articles related to online dating throughout the year. Any feed back on my blog posts are also welcome. Thank you

 

Citations

http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/02/29/5-facts-about-online-dating/

http://www.pewinternet.org/2013/10/21/online-dating-relationships/

http://visualeconomics.creditloan.com/a-business-of-love-online-dating-by-the-numbers/

http://www.match.com/magazine/article/12553/Online-Dating-10-Years-Ago-Vs-Today/

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/greg-hodge/online-dating-lies_b_1930053.html

http://www.evanmarckatz.com/blog/online-dating-tips-advice/why-do-so-many-people-lie-in-online-dating/

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