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Not Just a Wink and Smile: An Analysis of User-Defined Success in Online Dating

January 12, 2012 Comments off
Source:  Drexel University iSchool
This study examines the publically available stories of self-identified successful couples that met using the online dating services Match.com, eHarmony, or OkCupid. We enumerate four main findings; 1) the distribution of relationship status (Dating, Engaged, Married) varies among websites, 2) approximately half of all stories explicitly thank the service they used, 3) the locations of successful couples from Match.com and eHarmony are not statistically different when analyzed at a regional level, and 4) while the distribution of these couples follows general population trends, there are low population density islands where many self-identified successful couples live. These findings, coupled with a review of the existing literature, establish the context for future research into the technological and societal contexts in which online dating exists. This research has broad impacts of informing the design and development of online dating websites and other information and communication technologies (ICTs) such as social networking sites.
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