Research articles on online dating
Technology is a source of support and communication as well as tension, and couples say it has both good and bad impacts on their relationships.
We study the structure of heterosexual dating markets in the United States through an analysis of the interactions of several million users of a large online dating website, applying recently developed network analysis methods to the pattern of messages exchanged among users.
General public attitudes towards online dating have become much more positive in recent years, and social networking sites are now playing a prominent role when it comes to navigating and documenting romantic relationships.
These are among the key findings of a national survey of dating and relationships in the digital era, the first dedicated study of this subject by the Pew Research Center’s Internet Project since 2005.
Some 79% of online daters agree that online dating is a good way to meet people, and 70% of them agree that it helps people find a better romantic match because they have access to a wide range of potential partners.
Yet even some online daters view the process itself and the individuals they encounter on these sites somewhat negatively.
We find that dating markets in each city are partitioned into submarkets along lines of age and ethnicity.At the same time, public attitudes towards online dating have grown more positive in the last eight years: Additionally, 32% of internet users agree with the statement that “online dating keeps people from settling down because they always have options for people to date.” This is the first time we have asked this question.In general, online daters themselves give the experience high marks.That is statistically similar to the 17% of online daters who said that this had happened to them when we first asked this question in 2005.
Even today, online dating is not universally seen as a positive activity—a significant minority of the public views online dating skeptically.
Sex ratio varies widely between submarkets, with younger submarkets having more men and fewer women than older ones.