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JHUstudent's avatar

Why has there been a shift to online dating?

Asked by JHUstudent (678 points ) July 30th, 2012

I get it if you’re a certain age, or if you’re recently divorced and have an interest in dating again. It’s tough to find a partner when you’re older, I get that.

But I’ve seen e-dating become more and more popular among my age group, 23–26…and I don’t get it.

Girls say it’s because it’s hard to find a “good” guy when they go out. Guys say relatively the same thing. I personally don’t understand it. It’s just NOT that hard to find people when you’re young, going out, having a good time. Am I right? or am I just totally missing something?

PS – I suppose this question would be geared towards the “Millenials.”

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11 Answers

Aethelflaed's avatar

Because we do everything online. Why wouldn’t we date online?

Yes, it’s easier to find someone that you have things in common with online. Or somewhat more accurately, you have to spend less time getting to the point where you know if you have things in common. When meeting people in bars or clubs, the only thing you know you have in common is geographical location, and possibly physical attraction (though, that assumes that everyone experiences physical attraction the same way, which they don’t). Even if you try to meet people through common interests, it often only narrows it down a little. It also takes quite a bit more energy; you have to dress up, and go physically out. Online dating is something you can do at 3 in the morning in unbrushed teeth and pjs, and where you can spend a minute and a half on someone and know that there’s just no way in hell that’s gonna happen.

TexasDude's avatar

Online dating is low-pressure, and pretty much everyone has a computer and internet access these days. Also, the old stigma about meeting someone online for a date is not nearly as strong as it used to be. Online dating is convenient and fun and can serve as an excellent screening process in finding a potential match. I met my current girlfriend online and I couldn’t be happier. Turns out she even went to my school, I just had never met her before! Everything @Aethelflaed said is correct, too.

Blackberry's avatar

Simple answer: it’s easier for a lot of people. Doesn’t it make sense to treat dating more like shopping instead of trying to hit on people in person, creating a lot of awkward situations etc.

You will at least know someone that has seen your picture and profile is somewhat interested in you instead of starting from scratch.

Mariah's avatar

“It’s just NOT that hard to find people when you’re young, going out, having a good time.”

Yeah, but that crowd is going to be disproportionately skewed towards extroverts and partiers. If you’re looking for someone more introverted, it might not be easy to find someone that way.

andreaxjean's avatar

I think its basically so you can screen the person before you go out. Some people are creeps. For a girl, they see a cute guy, start flirting, he seems nice and all but then when you really get to know them they turn into sleaze balls.

Then again, people can easily lie online….

Aethelflaed's avatar

@Mariah Great point. I’ve literally never, ever met someone in a bar. I always feel like meeting people while “out” isn’t as easy as many say.

Paradox25's avatar

You’re making the mistake of assuming that most people think like you do, and do things the way you do them. Not everyone is comfortable in traditional rowdy enviroments, and it can be very hard to meet others like ourselves in those types of scenerios, especially if you have more introverted types of interests. As an introverted guy my entire life in my thirties, I’ve been there and have done that (what your implying), and it just doesn’t work for me.

Ironically though I’m not a big fan of online dating, and I do prefer to meet people in person. I think that for a guy, online dating is much tougher than it is for women. Also, there are certain mannerisms, demeanors and vibes that you get in person vs online. In a strange way, even as a very introverted guy, I find by just putting myself out there to be an easier way to meet women vs doing it online.

I do prefer to try to meet women in person, but not in the ways you’ve mentioned above. I was rather mature for my age, even as a teen and in my twenties. The appeal of going out and having a good time thing never appealed to me as much as putting myself in situations where I could possibly find a woman who shared my more introverted interests, like I’d mentioned above.

Shippy's avatar

It could be like everything, its quicker and faster, like fast food. Takes less effort too, in terms of physical effort. These days to get dolled up and go out, when you don’t particularly feel like it after a long day is a pain, instead of exciting. There is also more choice, more people in a smaller area. The list in numerous. I also think there is more pressure on younger people to be something, or they get lost in the crowd.

I personally am not keen on it, I met someone nearly 9 years ago, it’s a long story but I do have regrets yes. But I wasn’t looking not on the net or in real life.

I dont think it has that much to with age either, each age brings it own challenges, and pressures. I know lot’s of 50 year olds going out and being hit on, and having a wonderful time, who are hopeless on line.

dabbler's avatar

One of the toughest, and possibly awkward, things about meeting strangers in person is getting information about whether or not they are looking for a relationship.
Personals ads and now online dating sites take that problem right off the table. You know the other person is at least interesting in finding someone.

tedd's avatar

Because it’s easy. You can go online, search through dozens or even hundreds of profiles. You can search them based on criteria of what you’re looking for in a mate (age range, height, hair color, personality traits, career status, etc, etc). It doesn’t necessarily mean that people aren’t meeting mates out in the real world, but if I go to a bar tonight I might meet 6 girls, and 1 or 2 of them may truly be a good match for me to at least take on a date. And they may not be looking for anything right now even! If I go on the internet, I could meet 6 women who are a good match and are all looking for a relationship, right away.

I’ve used dating sites off and on for 5 or 6 years, with varying success (I’m almost 27 now). I met my current g/f of nearly 2 years on a dating site. The g/f before her was a friends younger sister, but then the g/f prior to her was another dating site girl.

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