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Study: Online Dating Makes People "Picky" and "Unrealistic"

Unknown Lamer posted more than 2 years ago | from the i-really-love-computers-like-really-really-like dept.

Science 630

New submitter garthsundem writes with this tale of digital love: "A newly published meta-analysis of over 400 studies of online dating (PDF) shows both its popularity (second only to meeting through friends) and its impact. More online daters report seeking a 'soulmate' online, and do so by searching through the wealth of available profiles. Unfortunately soul-searchers focus on faults, both in viewing profiles and then also once dating in person, leading to quick exits when relationships inevitably get complicated."

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Study shows... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38965903)

That online dating has made the average man behave like the average woman.

Re:Study shows... (1)

tellter2000 (1433121) | more than 2 years ago | (#38965931)

That online dating has made the average man behave like the average woman.

HA!

Re:Study shows... (5, Insightful)

bgat (123664) | more than 2 years ago | (#38965987)

That online dating has made the average man behave like the average woman.

... and both to behave like the typical adolescent.

Re:Study shows... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966063)

As he pulled into the parking slot near the edge of the huge, asphalt lot an empty beer can crunched under one of the front wheels of the car. He turned off his lights and surveyed the area. Yes, this was a good spot; he had a clear view of each automobile turning from the lone entrance driveway into the lot, where it had to slow almost to a stop under the bright, mercury-vapor lamp there, and he also was well situated for seeing which row of the lot each vehicle eventually turned into. He pulled his coat more snugly around his neck, turned the radio dial until he found an FM station which was broadcasting his favorite Schubert sonata, and settled down to wait.

Read more. [resist.com]

Re:Study shows... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966089)

I think it has less to do with online dating and more to do with a sense of entitlement, period. People date online either because they're desperate or because they have unrealistic expectations to begin with, not the other way around.

And, I've said this before, most dating sites are scams. Match.com was busted for actually sending their employees on dates with clients, and all online dating sites are are chock-full of fake profiles generated by the staff and/or spammers who will throw a bone every now and then for the sake of realism.

I am considering performing an experiment - attempting online dating again, but this time inflating my salary. How long can I bullshit being an engineer, wearing my nicest clothes out for dates? Then, when I finally get 'er home to my studio apartment, I can say, "It shouldn't matter how much money I make, you goddamn gold-digger."

-- Ethanol-fueled

Re:Study shows... (5, Interesting)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966355)

Match.com was busted for actually sending their employees on dates with clients, and all online dating sites are are chock-full of fake profiles generated by the staff and/or spammers who will throw a bone every now and then for the sake of realism.

The reality is that it's almost impossible for these sites to maintain anything like a 50/50 female/male ratio without somehow gaming the system. Go to any real world dating event and you'll find something similar. Women are recruited, offered free admission, etc. just to get enough of them to show up--while guys are lined up around the block.

It's a sad statement about a larger reality in society, there are always more desperate men than women. The good looking, rich, charismatic guys tend to juggle multiple women while the dumpy guys often get zilch. Meanwhile, the women are holding out for (and fighting over) Prince Charming (i.e. the good-looking, rich, charismatic guy) and all-too-often ignoring the nice but not-so-princely peasants.

Not saying the same thing doesn't happen the other way around sometimes too (guys will often focus way too much attention on physical attributes, to their detriment). But it still usually results in more desperate men than women.

Re:Study shows... (1)

datavirtue (1104259) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966507)

phsyco

Re:Study shows... (5, Insightful)

one cup of coffee (1623645) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966103)

This is actually very insightful, female dating behavior was based to a large part on having an abundance of potential mates to choose from, they were essentially buyers, whereas men traditionally acted as sellers trying to impress women ( I know I'm oversimplifying). Now with online dating, the market has basically evened out somewhat for men as women are openly competing for mates, thus they have become more like sellers, allowing men to start behaving somewhat more like buyers.

Re:Study shows... (2)

Synn (6288) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966341)

Not really. Online dating means a few women that photograph well are bombarded by the vast majority of men.

Re:Study shows... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966621)

Not really. Online dating means a few women that photograph well are bombarded by the vast majority of men.

And the men who really are just there looking for a nice girl to date are put off by the scores of prostitutes using online dating sites to hook up with Johns, never mind all the perverted swinger crap. I'd rather go to some speed-dating/dating-in-the-dark type gimmick place or a professional match making agency. At least that way I don't have to deal with the prossies and perverts. I don't care what the feminists may say, there is something to be said for arranged marriages as long as both the bride and the groom are willing participants and they end up liking each other.

Re:Study shows... (2, Interesting)

AmiMoJo (196126) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966597)

That would be true if it were not for most dating sites having a 20:1 or worse ratio of men to women. For true equality look at the gay dating scene.

Re:Study shows... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966135)

This is pretty insulting. Your misogyny is showing.

Re:Study shows... (2)

andydouble07 (2344014) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966343)

Your shining white armor is showing.

Re:Study shows... (5, Funny)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966209)

I just got a picture in my head of a man telling his girlfriend "I shouldn't NEED to tell you that I want to watch football, you should KNOW it."

No Posts? I quit! (0)

GNious (953874) | more than 2 years ago | (#38965917)

What, no posts here? I expect posts!

This is too much to handle, I quit!

Re:No Posts? I quit! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38965993)

This is Slashdot. Did you really expect much from a sausage fest?

Re:No Posts? I quit! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966369)

I expected a foot-long, uncut black sausage, not 1" vienna hot dogs.

Re:No Posts? I quit! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966123)

Slashdot lacks readers with experience on this topic.

Re:No Posts? I quit! (4, Funny)

dna_(c)(tm)(r) (618003) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966491)

Slashdot lacks readers with experience on this topic.

That hasn't stopped anyone before.

Quick Whinning and get on with life (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38965925)

Life is series of compromises. Online or not, there is certain group out there who thinks they
need (worse, deserve) "soul mate". Good thing with physical world is, these people will be
notorious in the town, friends circle and lose any chance of meeting decent folks.
But in Online world, they have luxury of keeping going through profiles and waste their
money, time and other peoples time. How else these "dating sites" make money ?

Re:Quick Whinning and get on with life (4, Funny)

eternaldoctorwho (2563923) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966023)

Well, I'm glad you don't feel like you are entitled to words like "the", "a", or "do". Just think, the arrogance of some people!

Re:Quick Whinning and get on with life (3, Insightful)

Tsingi (870990) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966175)

Well, I'm glad you don't feel like you are entitled to words like "the", "a", or "do". Just think, the arrogance of some people!

I predict that he's Russian.

Re:Quick Whinning and get on with life (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966535)

I didn't even notice on the first read through.

Re:Quick Whinning and get on with life (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966575)

Same here. Let's do away with these superfluous words :-P

Good grammar is unrealistic too (5, Funny)

ISpeakfortheProles (1904054) | more than 2 years ago | (#38965943)

FFS. There are /.ers who are capable of rewriting the entire Linux kernel in three lines of Perl, and yet cannot differentiate between "it's" and "its".

Re:Good grammar is unrealistic too (1)

DigitumDei (578031) | more than 2 years ago | (#38965969)

Got it right and wrong in the same sentence...

Re:Good grammar is unrealistic too (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38965989)

FFS. There are /.ers who are capable of rewriting the entire Linux kernel in three lines of Perl, and yet cannot differentiate between "it's" and "its".

They are also cannot differentiate between flirting and "just being nice"

Re:Good grammar is unrealistic too (1)

dimko (1166489) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966095)

I bet you are pretty girl! Though, that was not nice...

Re:Good grammar is unrealistic too (1)

datavirtue (1104259) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966569)

They [are] also cannot differentiate between flirting and "just being nice"

There's a difference!? You just blew my mind.

Re:Good grammar is unrealistic too (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966215)

Three bloody great long lines of Perl but I bet it's possible.

In other news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38965979)

Thousands of people gain more confidence as study finally proves that "it's not me, it's you."

Back in the old days... (5, Funny)

madhatter256 (443326) | more than 2 years ago | (#38965981)

If you wanted a hook-up, you went to a bar.

If you wanted a girl you could marry and bring to your parents, you went to church.

Now it's like this....

If you want a hook-up, go to match or similar (free) websites

If you want to find a girl you might marry go to eharmony

If you just want a hooker you go craigslist...

Re:Back in the old days... (5, Interesting)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966113)

Hah! So true.

On a serious note, I know several people in real life that have used eHarmony before. Most of them ended up getting married after their first or second date using the service and shortly after a year or so of meeting each other for the first time. That tells me two things. First, eHarmony has got the system down to a science with regards to their list of questions they ask members to take. Second, (and most important) members of eHarmony are already taking a serious and mature attitude with regards to finding a mate for life. When two people make it a serious effort to make a relationship work, I'm not surprised that eHarmony has what I think is the best success rate of them all.

Re:Back in the old days... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966407)

Selection bias. I know several people that used eHarmony and found no one. They later found their spouse on Yahoo Personals and Match.

Re:Back in the old days... (2)

chuckugly (2030942) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966671)

I'm not surprised that eHarmony has what I think is the best success rate of them all.

Depends on what the customers are after; marriage != success for everyone .....

Re:Back in the old days... (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966131)

I was promised facebook is where you go for all three, of course thats the same people promising I'll get a job there, blah blah blah.

Its important with these things to distinguish between:
1) What we are supposed to repeat to each other because we saw an authority on the news
2) What actually happens

Re:Back in the old days... (4, Funny)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966187)

eHarmony and certain people have a difference in opinion [randomfunnypicture.com] as to what's really important in a relationship.

Re:Back in the old days... (4, Interesting)

bryanp (160522) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966251)

If you want a hook-up, go to match or similar (free) websites

If you want to find a girl you might marry go to eharmony

YMMV. I met my wife on a free site after getting diddly for results on a pay site.

We did get a pretty good laugh when after meeting online we discovered out that we have the same employer and I'm her network administrator. Coincidence is a bizarre thing. (It's a big employer - we work in different buildings a couple of blocks apart, so we'd never met)

Re:Back in the old days... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966493)

I met my fiancee on a free site after using two pay sites. The free ones are better because everyone can respond back, while the paid sites only allow paying members to respond back, but you can't tell the difference between paying members and members who are checking it out. I think the ratio is probably 20 non-paying for every paying member, but since you can't tell which is which, it makes you feel like a loser when most members don't respond back.

Re:Back in the old days... (1)

wonderboss (952111) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966271)

Going to Craigslist to find a hooker
is about as bright as
going to Craigslist to find a soulmate.
There are better specialized web sites for both.

Wait, did I just post that....

Re:Back in the old days... (4, Interesting)

holmedog (1130941) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966321)

I realize you're joking, but let me throw some anecdotal evidence around.

I got divorced 2 years ago. A few months after that I decided I would try the dating scene. Hooked up a few times at the bar, went on some dates with friends-of-friends, the works. Decided to try online dating, because my life is busy and I thought it would increase my chances of finding someone who had free time similar to mine (weekdays, not weekends):

eHarmony: Too expensive. I can go to the bar for what I would spend to meet someone on there. I did fill out the free profile.
eVow: 3 dates from here, 2 ended in sex on the first night. "Long-term" my ass
plentyoffish: 4 dates from here - 2 ended in sex on the first night. 2 lasted 6+months (including my current girlfriend)
facebook: 3 dates - all ended in sex within the first week

I'm hardly a "playboy" at 215lbs 6'1 and an average build. But, I have to think you are right that the people on the "cheap" sites are looking for hookups and not investing in long term.

Re:Back in the old days... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966659)

So you think having sex early is a sign of someone you shouldn't take seriously? Funny, I"m of the exact opposite point of view.

shopping (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966003)

I guess it turns dating into something like shopping for a T.V. everyone wants what they feel is the best deal.
I may be getting old at a ripe age of 32 but perhaps the best way to meet someone isn't with a bunch of stats and information next to them, but rather to meet them out face-to-face and learn about eachother as you go along.

It's unrealistic (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966009)

I can think of a couple reasons why this happens. As a male who spent a few years online dating myself, and seeing both sides of the fence.

Guys terribly outnumber women on these sites. Women get many many many requests, and it's pretty much pick of the litter for them. Even if they don't get picky, they get jaded due to the idiots trying anything to get a woman interested. It's akin to trying to find an email from your family while sifting through endless penis enlargement emails.

There's always someone better looking or more interesting out there and dating sites make these people known to you .Be it through contact with them or the mere presence of their profile online. It's almost a carrot and stick game. It's so much easier to stop seeing someone who doesn't completely interest you when there are other potential mates out there.

Re:It's unrealistic (2)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966287)

Even if they don't get picky, they get jaded due to the idiots trying anything to get a woman interested.

You're forgetting the most annoying thing: you get endless amounts of penis pictures and "u want sexx?!" - messages in your messagebox. Well gee, OF COURSE you get jaded after a while when you keep getting stupid crap like that and then you sort of get accustomed to the idea that more-or-less all guys are like that. The only way to get over that is for guys to appear well above the average, which is easier said than done.

In other words, guys themselves -- atleast the annoying, horribly irritating and horny ones -- are only making the whole thing even worse for themselves and other guys.

As an aside, me being nerdy, only wanting to stay at home playing games together or separately, watching movies/anime, not liking shopping or going to bars, and being just generally a lazy, fat f*ck I don't really seem to be what people are looking for anyways... ;)

Why is this a problem? (5, Insightful)

LikwidCirkel (1542097) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966011)

The ability to be picky with online dating is the whole point! You can put all of your cards on the table before ever even meeting someone. In this busybody world, people don't want to have to go through traditional dating, only to find out months into a relationship about some strong deal breaker like wanting kids. That's just a disappointing waste of time and people are starting to realize it.

If you're looking for someone to spend your life with, you damned well should be picky. For the record, I met my partner online many years ago on a niche dating site, so maybe I'm a little biased.

Re:Why is this a problem? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966037)

And yet, there is no evidence that people are any happier.

Re:Why is this a problem? (5, Interesting)

JoeMerchant (803320) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966153)

And yet, there is no evidence that people are any happier.

Happiness is a differential function, it doesn't matter what you have in absolute terms, only relative.

So, if everybody is suddenly 1000% better off, happiness returns to baseline within a year or so, even while the improvement remains.

I think this, more than anything, explains Moore's law. Technological progress is often made in quantum leaps, but rather than delivering these leaps to the world, companies choose a slow steady increase - the engineering departments say it's safer that way, but marketing knows that they can sell far more widgets if they improve them a little at a time, making customers happy every time they get an improvement, instead of delivering all the improvements at once, making customers a little more happy once, but then complacent or even dissatisfied with the apparent lack of improvement.

Re:Why is this a problem? (5, Funny)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966449)

Happiness is a differential function

You, sir, hereby win slashdot.

Re:Why is this a problem? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966697)

You, sir, hereby win slashdot.

nonsense, his post doesn't even make sense, from the beginning with his meaningless mathematical descriptor to describe something that isn't true all the way to the absurd explanation of a non-related analogy that is incorrectly described and applied in the wrong context.
 
  oh wait I see what you mean :o)

Need amazon reviews on people (2)

cod3r_ (2031620) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966015)

Would help the process

Re:Need amazon reviews on people (5, Funny)

Sneeka2 (782894) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966099)

Just look at the guy's /. profile. Do you want the +5 Funny guy, the +4 Insightful/1 Interesting or the wild -3 Flamebait?

Re:Need amazon reviews on people (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966361)

Too few poll options.

Re:Need amazon reviews on people (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966599)

I'd pick the wild -3 Flamebait for sure. The rest of you take life too seriously.

Re:Need amazon reviews on people (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966689)

Just look at the guy's /. profile. Do you want the +5 Funny guy, the +4 Insightful/1 Interesting or the wild -3 Flamebait?

All the chicks will vote for the "cowboy Neal" survey option and we'll be right back to where we started...

Theory (5, Interesting)

TheSpoom (715771) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966027)

My theory is that since online dating has a lower barrier to entry, it attracts people who wouldn't otherwise be "ready" to find their soulmate. It's like PHP; it can be a powerful tool, but because it's easy there's a lot of crap code out there.

Disclaimer: Met my wife and soulmate on OkCupid. :^)

Re:Theory (2)

stanlyb (1839382) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966145)

was she good with....PHP?

Re:Theory (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966399)

was she good with....PHP?

No, but she's down with OPP.

Re:Theory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966455)

She met him on OKC so it was more important that after the fact it didn't burn when he PHP'd.

Re:Theory (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966315)

Does your wife know about her?

Re:Theory (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966377)

Wow, you met both your wife, AND your soulmate through OkCupid? Do they know about each other?

Picky (5, Insightful)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966047)

Why not be picky? Have you seen the stats for divorce lately? Anything is better if it helps people have good relationships instead settling for whatever came along when got fed up.

True love is unrealistic. That doesn't mean it's a bad goal.

I'm currently dating a wonderful girl I met online after many years of not finding anyone I would spend my life with. Had I not been 'picky' I could have settled for any number of other women that wouldn't make me happy. Why would I do that to myself?

Re:Picky (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966071)

The problem is that marriage is viewed as a commodity by most people. That's why the divorce rate is so high.

You should never get married to someone unless you spend the time to get to know them fully and really commit to marriage, which, you know, should be for the rest of your lives (til death do you part and all that).

Re:Picky (4, Insightful)

CMYKjunkie (1594319) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966279)

True love is unrealistic. That doesn't mean it's a bad goal.

With respect: you, sir, have not then met the proper woman! I'm 33 and have been with that "unrealistic" true love woman since I was 18. It isn't a "bad goal," it's THE goal.

Re:Picky (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966359)

True love is the only type worth having. (Or at least you need to think it is at the time or it is pointless to continue).

(Both my parents and (one set of) grandparents had / have it).

Unconditionally and undeniably so.

Don't see how it is at all unrealistic and even if it is as long as my base instincts are satisfied every now and again it doesn't matter.
(Base instincts are less of an issue as I get older.)

I would never do online dating or speed dating or any of that bullshit.

Re:Picky (5, Interesting)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966413)

Human brains lose plasticity as they age. The longer we wait to pair off, the less we are able to adapt to our mate, and them to us.

Human lives have chapters in them, like a story, and everything has to happen in its proper time. If you fuck with that timing, like we have by driving people to stay single till later in life so they can pursue education and career, you fuck the person up. Forever.

It's just like all those studies that show teenagers are much more vulnerable to drug addiction than mature adults. Pheremones are the drugs kids are supposed to get addicted to.

Re:Picky (5, Insightful)

flirno (945854) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966617)

The present culture is not synchronized to our biological realities. I am sure someone will try to fix it with synthetic pheremones when it becomes enough of a problem.

It's not online dating that's caused it... (5, Insightful)

TWX (665546) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966049)

...it's television, movies, glamour magazines, and many other forms of "art" and "culture" that are very heavily pushed upon a market.

It's been my experience that many women that met the physical/appearance standards that are promoted to us were at minimum highly narcissistic, and at worst bat-shit-fucking-crazy. It took me awhile to understand this, and on a techie note, to understand how damaged the former-BBSer women of the early to mid nineties at the tail end of the craze were. Generally damaged, each and every one, and we're not talking scratch-and-dent here either.

People, the dating pool is the pool of people who like to do the same things that you like to do. If there are no eligible people in your social circles, then you need to expand your social circles somewhat. That doesn't mean doing masculine or effeminate things if you don't want to, but you have to do something that you like to do that those you seek also like to do.

In my case it was swing and ballroom dance. It worked so well that I married and MIT graduate.

Re:It's not online dating that's caused it... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966219)

...the dating pool is the pool of people who like to do the same things that you like to do.

We're doomed to failure.

Re:It's not online dating that's caused it... (3, Interesting)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966353)

then you need to expand your social circles somewhat. That doesn't mean doing masculine or effeminate things if you don't want to

Why the heck not? That is so wrong advice. You die when you stop learning. If you're not comfortable with your own orientation such that you can try the "wrong thing" once in awhile, get that all figured that out before trying to add another person to the mix.

I used to troll scrapbooking stores and fabric stores and crafty stores and ask hot chicks without wedding rings for help picking out a gift for my mom (or sister, or aunt, or grannie, you get the idea). Supermarkets and "gift stores" too. I'd get teased by some coworkers about being seen going to "chick stores" because they were not sure of their own masculinity (I was sure, so I had no problem doing this kind of stuff), to which I'd respond with something brilliantly witty like "F you I'm getting some" (ah the intelligence and wit of youth...). Married over ten years to a scrapbooker chick now.

Also, aside from getting any, its interesting to try new stuff. I have no interest in using a sewing machine as a lifestyle or hobby, but I'm glad I tried it once. Those things are amazing little mechanical precision jewels. Sewing two pieces of fabric together didn't make my nads fall off, anymore than a chick playing a video game automatically grows chest hair.

Re:It's not online dating that's caused it... (1)

TWX (665546) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966515)

I think you missed the, "...if you don't want to." part. There are people of one's persuasion all over the place, but women generally lacking in older segments (ie non-anime) of Fandom, in particularly nerdy computer enthusiasm, in in-the-flesh role-playing gaming, and lots of other hobbies. One can engage in the masculine hobby of modding out old cars for performance and attract women sometimes. Believe it or not, there's a lot of math and insight required to actually achieve goals in those arenas. I know because I've done that for a hobby once I soured on computers, having made them my profession.

Re:It's not online dating that's caused it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966475)

The problem is that now with the convenience of being able to browse hundreds of male profiles on your smartphone or tablet, even the women who at best are average are starting to be pickier than they would have been in a by-gone era. Unless someone is obsessed with having low self-worth issues, most people actually have an unrealistically high view of themselves when it comes to their looks. It's not a long leap for people to glance in the mirror and go from "I'm OK" to "I'm hot" -- such is the power of fantasy. The imbalance in the online dating world (especially the "hook up" sites) comes from the fact that a good number of men are looking to "score" and will gladly overlook the less-than-glamorous appearance of a woman to "get some". Add to this the 10 or 11 to 1 ratio of men to women on many of these sites and you will find that the average looking woman has a far better chance to find someone, even a one night stand, than does an average looking man.

Re:It's not online dating that's caused it... (1)

TWX (665546) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966645)

Then, "...the only winning move is not to play."

I've found that most of what's worthwhile in life requires effort. I have a pretty good job, but it required effort to get it. I have a good marriage; it required effort to find and court my wife, and it requires effort to maintain the relationship. I have hobbies that I enjoy, and they generally require effort. If someone wants to find a soulmate by filling out an online questionnaire and submitting a photo, they can generally expect results comparable to the effort they put into the process.

With the exception of my first girlfriend, who was introduced to me by a mutual friend, every relationship I've had has been through putting forth the effort to talk to women, such that they get to know me as I attempt to get to know them.

If one wants to put the same effort as a game of Guess Who? [childofthe1980s.com] then I guess that's their business, but I don't think they get much latitude to complain when the process doesn't work.

Who is dating? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966057)

People on Slashdot don't date hence no comments.

like a virtual free brothel, sorta? (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966069)

I like this quote of a quote of a question from one of the articles:

Where else can you go in a matter of 20 minutes [and] look at 200 women who are single and want to go on dates?

Answer, a really big brothel? That analogy holds, neither give it up for free, unrealistic emotional expectations, seemingly everyones got a strong opinion about it and its participants, etc. Most participants just trying to have fun, fun way to catch a disease....

Workflow automation for business practices is well known for software devs, /.ers in general, etc. Much like "social media" is sort of an online automation software simulating the grade school playground social scene, I guess online dating is kind of like automation software for a brothel, sorta.

Picky and unrealistic? You don't say (1)

smooth wombat (796938) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966091)

Funny that it takes a study to find this out. It should be obvious to anyone who is dating, online or not. The only real difference between online dating and real life dating is online dating allows one to find faults quicker so you can move on to the next 'loser'.

Besides, some reasons behind this situation have already been described [earthlink.net] .

Re:Picky and unrealistic? You don't say (3, Insightful)

Larryish (1215510) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966305)

Why online dating will never work:


Jdogg: Hey
QT-Pie: Hey
Jdogg: whats goin on
QT-Pie: Nothing. Who are you?
Jdogg: Jdogg. Wanna cyber?
QT-Pie: what does that mean?
Jdogg: what are you wearing?
QT-Pie: T-shirt. Jeans.
Jdogg: Garter belt?
QT-Pie: Ummm...no.
Jdogg: Are we gonna cyber or not?
QT-Pie: uh, okay.
Jdogg: Sweet, I start by rubbing your ass all around. You love this.
Jdogg: You're wet already. I can smell your p*ssy stink from here.
QT-Pie: WHAT?!
Jdogg: I execute standing position 12 from the Kama Sutra. Passion fills the room. Your head is close to the ceiling fan.
Jdogg: You leave everything to Jdogg.
Jdogg: I am completely inside of you. You are my dick puppet. I put on a little play.
QT-Pie: This is weird. I should go.
Jdogg: I drop you on the ground, and lay a stripe down your back.
QT-Pie: A stripe?
Jdogg: I need a sandwich.
QT-Pie: You're a freak.
Jdogg: I was great. You loved it.

Re:Picky and unrealistic? You don't say (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966551)

The original was better aka the famous "I put on my robe and wizard hat" routine

http://bash.org/?104383 [bash.org]

Giant virtual bar (3, Interesting)

crowemojo (841007) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966097)

In my experience, the most popular dating sites (listed as type 1 in the article, like OKCupid and Match) are like giant bars. The women are hounded from all directions by men, and the men seem to have to fight to distinguish themselves. Every good friend I know that is female and on one of these sites is constantly bombarded and things quickly devolve into shallow initial impressions. I'm willing to bet most relationships started at bars are often shaky when things get real as well.

Re:Giant virtual bar (1)

flirno (945854) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966519)

Well yes plus bars have the alcohol. No alcohol on dating sites -- just spam -- which is sobering.

Everybody lies. (1)

NoZart (961808) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966107)

Being picky could also being understood as "trying to make out what is true and what is fabricated on a profile"

(Did not read TFA, obviously)

Reality slap... (4, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966109)

Regular dating makes people "picky" and "unrealistic"

I have friends that ,"I can only date a HOTTIE" and they are too freaking ugly, fat, etc to even get the attention of a normal girl. One friend is nearly 400 pounds and looks like the dough boy and thinks he will get a hot chick.

The REALITY is that many people are not only unrealistic, but they are shallow and have a twisted sense of the world.

Also remember, All Hot chicks are insane, but not all insane chicks are hot.

Re:Reality slap... (4, Insightful)

Maximum Prophet (716608) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966241)

Watch just about any sitcom from a few years ago. Fat guy with hot chick. (King of Queens, Family Guy, The Flintstones, The Honeymooners)

It's actually getting better. Ray Romano and Tim Allen seem to be matched with an actresses of equal "hotness".

Re:Reality slap... (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966411)

All Hot chicks are insane

Hormones will do that. It's all part of the makeup of a female human being. Think about it. They have a menstrual cycle once a month, hormones are flooding the body while pregnant, then there's the period of time called menopause as women get older. And to throw a monkey wrench in it all, taking birth control along with facing unreal expectations of what "pretty and hot" are, is it any wonder they all haven't committed mass suicide yet?

For men it's easy. We just have to think with both heads. Often with one type over the other.

Re:Reality slap... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966487)

Some of this is survival mechanism in action. A number of these people with their attitudes would kill themselves if they observed themselves objectively.

I am what I say I am (1)

concealment (2447304) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966117)

Nonsense. Online dating allows us to construct our personalities as we wish they would be. This lets people know who we are within, not who we are on the outside.

Sincerely,

M4W, 21, multi-millionaire, own several yachts, spend all my time on charity, have a 12" penis

Really??? (0)

addam666 (1939502) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966127)

This made the front page... REALLY??? I just died a little inside :(

For picky people its a savior (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966137)

For someone as picky as me online dating was the only way to go. How else was I supposed to meet an intellectual who loves theater and books as much as I do in THE SOUTH? Been dating a girl for 7 months and she's even more awesome than any expectation her profile may have set. It didn't have anything about her boundless compassion.

Study shows that meeting someone in real life... (1)

captainpanic (1173915) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966151)

... often screws up your chances too.

When I walk into a bar, I need only seconds to check out all the people. And I will definitely form an opinion about the women. Who says men aren't picky in the real world? And I suspect that women are even quicker at forming an opinion.

Study: it's easier to study the online world than the offline world.

slashdot personals (2)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966177)

What is the story with slashdot personals?

I "remember" this from something like a decade ago, but I don't remember much but the name and a couple anecdotes. The Mighty GOOG has failed me, or at least I'd have to wade thru more junk than I'm willing to.

I could swear we were doing something like a dating site linked to /.. I even remember a kuro5hin article flaming it for not being LGBT compatible, as if a site thats not even UTF-8 compatible is going to have that too.

I don't remember if it was serious or a joke or what. Probably because I was already married (still am, to the same chick even)

What I learned from online "dating" (5, Insightful)

tekrat (242117) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966225)

#1) Women don't actually want to go out with you. What they want is a male "pen-pal". They want you to write long emails to them which they can read in Starbucks while sipping their lattes.

#2) Avoid any woman who's profile claims she isn't seeking anyone who plays games or has baggage. Because she's the one who's playing games and has baggage.

#3) Yes, yes, yes, we all love wine, good food, long walks on the beach. Tell me what's unique about you, not what makes you the same as everyone else!

#3) After more than a decade of online dating, I've decided I'm happier by myself anyhow. When I crave "companionship", there are services for that.

Re:What I learned from online "dating" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38966347)

#3) Yes, yes, yes, we all love wine, good food, long walks on the beach. Tell me what's unique about you, not what makes you the same as everyone else!

Most people don't have distinguishing features that are totally different than other people. If some of your main features are totally unique than that's either:
- your work (not a good topic for the profile)
- because you're a freak

Good luck using either of those to advertise yourself on a dating website.

Re:What I learned from online "dating" (2)

BorgDrone (64343) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966521)

#3) Yes, yes, yes, we all love wine, good food, long walks on the beach. Tell me what's unique about you, not what makes you the same as everyone else!

Relevant XKCD [xkcd.com]

Why you should never pay for online dating (5, Interesting)

Mr_Silver (213637) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966283)

An interesting article originally posted by OKCupid (until they were bought and it was pulled down) explaining why you should never pay for online dating:

http://interestingreads.posterous.com/why-you-should-never-pay-for-online-dating-ok [posterous.com]

Worth a read.

Met my wife online 9 years ago.. (3, Funny)

Colourspace (563895) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966293)

Divorce coming through this week. HTH.

i met my wife on EHarmony (2)

BitwiseX (300405) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966297)

and yeah, I was picky. Who wouldn't be? Generally, the point of marriage is to find someone you want to spend the rest of your life with, why wouldn't you be picky?

Comparing dozens and sometimes hundreds of possible dates may encourage a "shopping" mentality in which people become judgmental and picky, focusing exclusively on a narrow set of criteria like attractiveness or interests.

I always thought that's what dating was, shopping for your soul mate. The article continues to say that communicating over the internet creates unreal expectations. Well... yeah. I've talked to girls on the phone and gotten completely unrealistic expectations too. I'm not sure that's an effect of online dating or just not meeting face to face yet. You can't even expect this on the first date! Nobody reveals all their faults on the first date (Hell, I would never have had a date if I did!). Online dating sites are a good modern day tool, and the online equivalent of going to a singles bar, and if you've gone to a singles bar and actually gotten a date, you know it's trial and error.

You just gotta use your tools right! If you expect a computer to find your soulmate for you, then your expectation are definitely unrealistic.

It does happen though. I didn't expect it.

EHarmony only works if you're Christian (2)

tekrat (242117) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966637)

If you're from some other wierdo religion, you are scored down. EHarmony's dirty little secret is that their "29" personality traits that they score you on is really all about if you're the right religion.

Notice of course that they never tell you exactly how their matching algorithm works.

The 5 worst dates I ever went on were through eHarmony. They weren't just a complete waste on time and money, they were one of the reasons I gave up entirely.

I mean, OK you met your wife... Goody for you, you're one of the lucky ones, maybe you're white, christian and from the midwest. I don't know.

But, it seems to me that their matching ability isn't really all it's cracked up to be, because my experience wasn't just bad, it was beyond bad.

Eh... (1)

larys (2559815) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966327)

it's more of a cesspool than trying to date in person...run, run far away...

obligatory subject (2)

Charliemopps (1157495) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966385)

I think it's more likely that "Picky" and "Unrealistic" people eventually gravitate towards online dating because it allows them to be "Picky" and "Unrealistic" over a much larger selection of people they can eventually reject on superficial grounds. The majority of the people I know that are using these services are Fat, over 50, have bad jobs, and they want to meet people that are slender, under 30 and make good money. The few people I've met that have gotten a relationship off of one of these sites are usually nuts, and the relationship ends up being the kind you read about in the paper eventually.

If you want to meet a romantic interest you have 2 options:
1. Pick your favorite hobby, take classes, go on retreats, workshops, do the hobby with large groups of people... you will run into someone eventually.
2. Go to a bar, get drunk, hope you wake up next to someone you find attractive. (This has the highest probability of success.)

There is trash, but not all's bad (1)

berryvanhalderen (822075) | more than 2 years ago | (#38966539)

Maybe there is a difference between countries, but the dutch sites are doing reasonably well. Finding/dating keeps on being frustrating, especially for the /. crowd since, well, this is not the sort of people adept with the best communication skills, so when using those sites my feeling was also that most other subscribers was too high demanding. But it worked in the end, also for a number of my family members (also non-tech females) and quite some friends. And there are a lot of females too using it seriously and, although initially too high demanding, have come down to more realistic perspective. And it has become more widely accepted. Is there a difference between countries (no US vs EU bashing intended)?
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