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"For years, the online dating industry has ignored actual relationship science in favor of unsubstantiated claims and buzzwords, like 'matching algorithms,' that merely sound scientific." He added, "In the comments section of the report card, I would write: 'apply yourself!
'" Finkel co-authored this report with Paul Eastwick, assistant professor of psychology at Texas A&M University; Benjamin Karney, professor of psychology at the University of California, Los Angeles; Harry Reis, professor of psychology at the University of Rochester; and Susan Sprecher, professor of sociology and psychology at Illinois State University.
The chats and messages people send through online dating sites may even help them to convey a positive initial impression, as long as people meet face-to-face relatively quickly.
Given the potentially serious consequences of intervening in people's romantic lives, the authors hope that this report will push proprietors to build a more rigorous scientific foundation for online dating services.
Finkel and his co-authors conclude that online dating is successful insofar as it rapidly helps singles meet potential partners in person, so that they can discover whether a romantic spark is there.Unheard of just twenty years ago, online dating is now a billion dollar industry and one of the most common ways for singles to meet potential partners.Many websites claim that they can help you find your "soulmate." But do these online dating services live up to all the hype?Lead author Eli Finkel, Associate Professor of Social Psychology at Northwestern University, recognizes that "online dating is a marvelous addition to the ways in which singles can meet potential romantic partners," but he warns that "users need to be aware of its many pitfalls." Many online dating sites claim that they possess an exclusive formula, a so-called "matching algorithm," that can match singles with partners who are especially compatible with them.But, after systematically reviewing the evidence, the authors conclude that such claims are unsubstantiated and likely false.
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