Two out of every five American couples now meet online

couple

(Pablo Heimplatz, Unsplash)

This article is brought to you thanks to the collaboration of The European Sting with the World Economic Forum.

Author: Charlotte Edmond, Formative Content


GSOH. VGL. WLTM. The chances are, if you understand these acronyms, you are of a certain age.

Personal ads in newspapers used to be scattered with these widely understood shortenings (good sense of humour, very good looking, and would like to meet – in case you were wondering) as a way of keeping down the cost of newspaper column inches.

But the hunt for love has evolved. Heterosexual couples in the United States are now more likely to meet online than in any other way, according to a study by Stanford University. Short descriptions in the back pages are no longer considered an option when photos and videos adorn most online profiles.

Image: Stanford University

Two in five couples now meet through dating websites like eHarmony and Tinder, with the internet shaking up the search for a soulmate and increasingly displacing the matchmaking role previously played by friends and family.

Up until a decade ago, being introduced through friends was the most common way that couples met – and that had been the case since the end of the Second World War.

Image: Stanford University

Swipe right

2013 was the year the tide turned and more heterosexuals met online than via friends and acquaintances. That’s a big shift in a short space of time: in 1995, shortly after the first web browser was launched, just 2% of couples met online.

Tinder, the leading US phone dating app, was first released in 2012. Grindr, the main app for gay men, was released in 2009. Last year, Facebook announced it too would be entering the online dating technology market.

The proliferation of smartphones, launched around 2007, was key to the rise of the online dating market. As well as allowing apps to determine your location and suggest matches nearby, they also made dating available anywhere and anytime.

Image: Statista

Most of the “traditional” ways of hooking up have declined in recent years. The number of couples who meet at school, church or at work has fallen since 1995.

But the picture in the US is not reflective of the rest of the world: it is the biggest user of online dating apps globally and in many other parts of the world uptake has been shaped by cultural norms.

Image: Statista

Although Stanford’s research found no link between how couples meet and the rate of break-ups, back in 2013 research by the University of Chicago found that couples who meet online have happier and longer marriages.

 

The study wasn’t able to pinpoint why this was, but the sheer volume of potential partners online and the ability to vet them prior to meeting are likely to contribute.

Specialist interest sites also help people target like-minded individuals or those with similar desires – there are sites for everyone from fitness fans and vegans to rural singles and bikers. As well as one especially for supporters of President Donald Trump, which says it wants to make America date again.

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

the European Sting Milestones

Featured Stings

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Eliminating hepatitis calls for ‘bold political leadership, with investments to match,’ UN health chief says

UN chief calls for ‘enlightened self-interest’ from world leaders to save ‘the whole planet’ from climate change

UN rights chief ‘strongly’ condemns ‘shocking’ mass executions in Saudi Arabia

China’s lead in the global solar race – at a glance

Palestine refugees’ relief chief warns Security Council money to fund Gaza operations will run out in mid-June

Tax Inspectors Without Borders making significant progress toward strengthening developing countries’ ability to effectively tax multinational enterprises

Women’s voices must be heard in the battle to save the ocean

EU adopts new €100 million assistance package to benefit refugees and local communities in Lebanon, Jordan, and Iraq

IMF: European banks do not perform their duty to real economy

EU Trust Fund for Africa: new migration-related actions to protect vulnerable people and foster resilience of host communities in North of Africa

Food safety: more transparency, better risk prevention

Iran: UN rights chief ‘deeply disturbed’ by continuing executions of juvenile offenders

EU Commission indifferent on Court of Auditors’ recommendations

How each country’s share of global CO2 emissions changes over time

Which countries have the highest unemployment rates?

Health & Sustainable Development Goals: it’s about doing what we can

Here are 5 security challenges Nigeria’s leader must tackle

At COP24, countries agree concrete way forward to bring the Paris climate deal to life

Main results of Environment Council of 09 October 2018

Release of prize-winning Reuters journalists in Myanmar welcomed by UN

Is the EU competent enough to fight human smuggling in 2015?

Three ways Finland leads the world – and education isn’t one of them

A Monday to watch the final act of a Greek tragedy; will there be catharsis or more fear?

EU Council: The US airlines may freely pollute the European air

Slovakia and its failure to abide by the European law

From cheeseburgers to coral reefs, the science of decision-making can change the world

European Commission: the LED lights of your Audi A6 shall save our planet

Better training ‘a necessary and strategic investment’ in peacekeeping that saves lives: Guterres

COP24: World sports join team UN in race against climate change

‘We need to do more’ to transform the world, deputy UN chief tells African audiences

ECB guarantees the liquidity of the Atlantic financial volume

These countries are pioneering hydrogen power

Businesses, governments and consumers to implement a more climate-friendly approach to #BeatPlasticPollution on World Environment Day 2018

European Development Days 2013

The mother of all fights about inflation, growth and banks

Europe on the Move: Commission completes its agenda for safe, clean and connected mobility

Tunisia wants to change inheritance rules to boost gender equality

ECB indicates south Europeans can endure more austerity

The movement of anti-vaccers: taking humanity back 200 years

What if big-tech companies became non-profits?

Counting unemployment in the EU: The real rate comes to anything between 16.1% and 20.6%

Spotlight Initiative – EU and UN fight against domestic violence in the Pacific region

Global economy to see ‘steady’ growth of three per cent in 2019 despite risks, says UN

The Ecofin Council creates officially the clan of ‘undead’ banks

Collaboration: the key to success in the digital economy

Boosting adult learning essential to help people adapt to future of work

EU’s unsparing question to UK: now what kind of future relations do you want?

Outgoing UN official praises Iraq’s ‘exemplary peaceful transfer of power’ at the top

EU Commission draws the wrong conclusions

Robots will soon be a necessity but they won’t take all our jobs

Tackling ‘deeply worrying’ global rise in anti-Semitism is a job for all societies everywhere, says UN chief

Mankind’s first tool to fight malaria also kills

Euro celebrates its 20th birthday

How smarter machines can make us smarter humans

G20: Less growth, more austerity for developing countries

Our healthcare systems are ailing. Here’s how to make them better

From drones to health data, how Japan can power ahead

ECB offers plenty and cheap liquidity to support growth in all Eurozone countries

Accountability in Sudan ‘crucial’ to avoid ‘further bloodshed’, says UN rights office

Forget about growth without a level playing field for all SMEs

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s