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These sites can serve as a way to practice those skills and build up self-confidence, too.“[Sites like] Ok Cupid give people a mechanism to combat the anxiety of being single,” said Ana B., 24, of New York City.Plus, many big sites have been hesitant to allow independent researchers to look at their matching algorithms in depth. Of the 13 online daters I talked to for this article, only one believes algorithms can make successful matches. “I don’t believe that an algorithm can match me up, and I don’t want to match me up,” said Jason Feifer.A senior editor at Fast Company, Feifer met his wife Jennifer Miller, a freelance journalist and author, through Ok Cupid after narrowing his search criteria to two requirements: “Jewish” and “journalist.”Feifer and Miller told me they didn’t start using Ok Cupid with the hopes of finding their soulmates.After a rough breakup last January, I was sad and single in the Big Apple.Valentine’s Day was approaching, and this city of more than eight million people was feeling oddly lonely.Miller agreed, saying: “And it accomplished what I wanted to do, which was go on a lot of dates.“While online dating sites give people another tool to find potential mates, the dates themselves are not very different, other than maybe knowing a bit more about the other person before officially meeting.
“If you don’t have a personality, it’s going to come across in an email, a phone call, or across a table,” said Larry K., 46, who met his wife on nine years ago.
“I think there is a possibility [that these algorithms] could evolve to better predict long-term compatibility.
There’s just a disconnect between what social science says is actually possible, and what the sites say they can do,” said Slater.
The same rules apply,” said Steven C., a yoga instructor who met his partner on [email protected] (a dating site that’s no longer active) 15 years ago.
The majority of the daters I interviewed (and Slater, too) at some point referred to online dating as a tool, and that’s just what it is.
Experts say online dating sites see a huge traffic increase between Christmas and Valentine’s Day.