Matchmaking Websites Might Be Making This Whole Dating Thing Harder
Online dating has gotten so common now that some estimates say more than one in five couples meet that way -- and while all those extra options are great, a team of psychologists thinks dating sites can warp our expectations and actually make it harder to find that perfect person.
The researchers say sites rely too much on "profiles" covering everything from personality traits to likes and dislikes, yet this information isn't terribly useful for finding a good match. Both people liking the complete works of Ron White isn't a reason to spend forever together.
The report also says daters lack insight into what attracts them to others and why, and therefore the characteristics they look for in online profiles may be very different than those that will create an actual connection. In other words, finding the right person can be like that old saying about pornography -- we can't define it, but we know it when we see it. Unless it's really super obscure fetishes. Then we don't know what the hell we are looking at.
Researchers also say profiles make people too judgmental and overly picky.
"Online dating creates a shopping mentality, and that is probably not a particularly good way to go about choosing a mate," says Harry Reis, Ph.D., one of the review's authors.
We have kind-of a shopping mentality when it comes to dating as well, but it goes 'grab it if it's cheap.' That's also the subheading on our Match.com profile.