Online Couples Dating Apps and Websites have not always been a welcome trend in most societies. However, it is known to be one of the greatest social transformations throughout history. Thousands of years ago, people started living in large communities and couples got together mainly because friends and families connected them. People are now just getting used to the idea that we are free to look for spouses on our own, purely based on love and without any help from parents, friends and relatives.
The idea that individuals can search for love has been around only for a few hundred years and even then, it always ends up with an intervention from family members and friends. They introduce a romantic partner they feel is more suitable for their loved one. This situation may not be an arranged marriage but the outcomes are quite similar. There is a lot of vetting and approval to ensure that the future spouse is of a similar social class, race, ethnicity and religion.
Connecting through the internet has become the most usual way to begin a romantic relationship in the US. A third of new marriages and couples began through online dating. Perfect strangers with different backgrounds meet then begin a life together without any friends or family in common.
As more and more strangers partner up, the type of people that build families also changes and this also changes the next generation’s way of life. Online dating is desegregating people in America and building families with blurred social boundaries. Present day couples who first met online have a higher chance of being interracial or come from completely different ethnic backgrounds. This is in comparison to those who meet offline (30% vs 23%)
When compared to offline couples, it is 51% vs 38%, both in their upbringing and what they practice as adults. It is also likely that a college graduate will be paired with a non-graduate (30% vs 22%), bridging the biggest gap in America’s educational and social class.
Black-white couples are the most frowned upon relationship diversity in America yet with online dating, this seems to happen more and more with time. When compared to offline dating, it is 8% vs 3%. The samples used were of American adult couples between the year 2009 and 2017. The survey was completed by both online and offline users for more accuracy and equal representation.
It is however, not clear whether these effects are changing with the evolution of internet dating but as more people continue to find love online, the higher the impact on the diversity of America’s population of couples. The increasing numbers of couple diversity changes the demographics of communities, religious groups, schools, workplaces and so on.
They create room for sharing information, introducing one another and socially supporting each other across different communities and families. These diverse social networks consisting of friends and families create great agents of desegregation.
Online dating did not have to turn out the way it did. It would have just been a more efficient hookup system for family and friends to set up singles with each other. This could still happen in the near future as it happens through social networks but there would probably be less diverse couples than in traditional romantic couples.
People have tried using online dating to find partners with similar backgrounds. Some studies on online dating behaviors show that such people are more likely to respond to potential partners if they are from the same ethnic, racial, religious and social background. Offline, they are also biased when choosing whom to interact with. Since there is more diversity in online dating pools than offline, all it takes to create diverse couples is a little open mindedness.
This may be difficult in offline dating because you can easily filter your choices to find the perfect match. Picky behavior is quite rare offline but there is no reason to believe that it couldn’t be normal. If that is the case, then online dating could cause more segregation than any other source of romance.
Online dating has not changed as many things as we believe it has. Heterosexual couples are not being increased by the internet. However, there has been an increasing number of same-sex couples. Since the mid-1990s, there has been an increasing rate of married or cohabiting couples in their 30s and 40s (72-73%) and for women between the age of 30-44 with either a husband or boyfriend (80-89%), the rate has been steady.
The number of same-sex coupling has been increasing since the 1990s. It is however difficult to tell whether it is an effect of the internet or the profound legal and social changes that have occurred at present times.
People also have a higher tendency to be drawn to those with similar political views. 54% of couples are known to be party homogenous. This applies to both online and offline couples but could possibly change in the future.
Very soon, online dating will account for the majority of America’s new couples, marriages and parents. In spite of this, the online dating industry has avoided deep scrutiny from the public, a situation similar to what other tech companies have experienced. There is however, an ongoing conversation on the matching algorithms controlled by the sites and which may discourage diverse pairing.
It is expected that there will be more conversations about how popular dating sites and apps operate, how users are sorted out in their algorithms and interface, what data is stored and what data is sold to third parties. There might also some panics about this form of dating, especially from societies that may lose when their young ones marry outside their community. Online dating may be taken for granted but it will be more politically contentious with time.