The Lucrative Business of Love

It is, without a doubt, safe to say that our society has transferred over to a technological era. With recent news about robotic jellyfish, companies requiring you to give them your Facebook password during interviews, the average teen sending about 60 texts a day, among many other examples, there really is no need to say that we are moving into a more tech-savvy society; we are already there. Of course, the allure of dating doesn’t fall behind either. Online dating is at a huge boom right now, with statistics showing that a whopping 40 million people have either visited or used an online dating site.

The growth of online dating can be attributed to a number of factors. First and foremost, as we become more comfortable with technology, we begin to think of more efficient ways of executing our daily tasks. From the introduction of databases to handheld devices that make it easy to communicate with the rest of the world in an instant, technology allows us to solve problems in an effective manner. So why shouldn’t it do the same with that pesky issue that everyone faces – finding a date? Some of the feedback given as to why even try online dating included: getting to know your date from the comfort of your own home, being able to select who would be a proper match, getting to know people outside of your area, avoiding first-date jitters and being able to show interest without suffering from face-to-face rejection.

However, the question remains: are these reasons beneficial to starting a relationship, or are they hindering the natural process of creating and fostering a relationship with another being? Just because you might not feel as bad when someone rejects you over the internet does not necessarily mean the internet is a better choice for finding a date. Some of the top companies in the online dating world are making a huge amount of money by feeding off of these comfort-related reasons to finding a date online. Both and made over $100 million in 2011 alone.

Online dating is just that – a business. These companies advertise that they help connect people together based on similar interests, and also show how many of their clients are successfully married. The people that meet over online dating tend tie the knot much quicker than those who meet through traditional ways (through a mutual friend, work, school, etc.). The average couple that meets online date for about 18 months before getting married, as oppose to traditional couples who date for about 42 months.

An interesting study would be to find how many of these online/traditional couples are actually still married and ask them to rate their current marriage satisfaction. Most online daters believe that online dating works because they can “just answer a bunch of questions about themselves” and be paired up with someone similar. While these websites claim to predict compatibility in order to get consumers to fork over some cash, they may actually be harming people by: “focusing just on short-term satisfaction,” “failing to take into account how partners grow and mature,” “lending the expectation that a relationship should be perfect from day one,” and “failing to account for changes in health or circumstances,” according to a study done by

As a final piece of advice to online daters, please take note that a staggering 81% of online dating website users lie about their height, weight, and/or their age on their profile! The issue of trust has always been a hot topic when it comes to online dating. Fortunately, some online dating websites have taken the initiative to start conducting background checks on their clients.

For Love or Money: Does Online Dating Really Work? [INFOGRAPHIC]


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