People aren’t using online dating because they are shy but because they have moved to a new city, are working long hours or don’t have time to meet anyone new.
Although 94% deny their internet dating profiles contain any fibs (Gibbs et al., 2006), psychologists are a suspicious lot. (2008) measured the heights and weights of 80 internet daters, as well as checking their driving licences for their real age.
Daters were more truthful about their age (1.5% deviation) and height (1.1% deviation).
As expected women tended to shave off the pounds, while men gave themselves a boost in height.
The one-third response rate, which is backed up by academic research (Rosen et al., 2008), is partly because many internet dating accounts are dead. In a study of online dating, Rosen et al., (2008) found evidence that more intense emotionality, e.g.
oktrends also found that longer messages only yield a small improvement in response rate for men and nothing for women. using words like ‘excited’ and ‘wonderful’, made a better impression on both men and women.
Somewhere between one-third and three-quarters of single people with internet access have used it to try and meet someone new.
But, over the years, we’ve heard conflicting stories about how successful it is.
While the results were more variable, overall people preferred relatively low-levels of self-disclosure.
Contrary to the stereotype, there’s little evidence that internet dating is the last resort of social misfits or weirdos. Internet daters are more likely to be sociable, have high self-esteem and be low in dating anxiety (Kim et al., 2009; Valkenburg, 2007).
These studies found no evidence that people use online dating because they can’t hack it face-to-face. People’s motivations to start online dating are many and various, typically involving a triggering event like a break-up, but overall Barraket and Henry-Waring (2008) have found that people’s motivations are less individual and more social.
People instinctively understand this when choosing their profile photo so Toma and Hancock (2010) took photographs of internet daters, then judges compared these to the real profile photos.
Although less physically attractive people were the most likely to choose a self-enhancing photo, overall the differences were tiny.