There’s no obvious pattern by which people who meet online are worse off. For people who have a hard time finding partners in their day-to-day, face-to-face life, the larger subset of potential partners online is a big advantage for them.
For folks who are meeting people everyday—really younger people in their early twenties—online dating is relevant, but it really becomes a powerful force for people in thin dating markets.
I wondered to myself, is this what online dating has done to us?
Is it creating a new reality in which people actively avoid real-life interactions?
You have one of the most unique data sets about modern romance. Well, one of the first things you have to know to understand how dating — or really courtship rituals, since not everyone calls it dating — has changed over time is that the age of marriage in the United States has increased dramatically over time.
People used to marry in their early 20s, which meant that most dating that was done, or most courting that was done, was done with the intention of settling down right away.
They are important today — roughly one of every four straight couples now meet on the Internet.
(For gay couples, it's more like two out of every three).
A couple of months ago, I was sitting at a bar minding my own business when the woman next to me did something strange."There are a lot of theories out there about how online dating is bad for us," Michael Rosenfeld, a sociologist at Stanford who has been conducting a long-running study of online dating, told me the other day."And mostly they're pretty unfounded." Rosenfeld, who has been keeping tabs on the dating lives of more than 3,000 people, has gleaned many insights about the growing role of apps like Tinder.I felt a deep sense a rejection -- not personally, but on behalf of everyone at the bar.Instead of interacting with the people around her, she chose to search for a companion elsewhere online.