Overall, men and women who have used online dating tend to have similar views of the pros and cons — with one major exception relating to personal safety. People in nearly every major demographic group—old and young, men and women, urbanites and rural dwellers—are more likely to know someone who uses online dating or met a long term partner through online dating than was the case eight years ago. No doubt many reasons underlie the relatively small size of the active dating population. Not surprisingly, young adults—who have near-universal rates of social networking site use and have spent the bulk of their dating lives in the social media era—are significantly more likely than older social media users to have experienced all three of these situations in the past. Some key demographic dimensions of each group are shown in the table below: Younger adults are especially likely to live out their relationships through social networking sites. Women are much more likely than men to have experienced uncomfortable contact via online dating sites or apps: But in analyzing our findings, we discovered another story: These sites are also being used as a source of background research on potential romantic partners. Younger adults are also more likely than older ones to say that their relationship began online. And women are more likely than men to have blocked or unfriended someone who was flirting in a way that made them uncomfortable. Those who have tried online dating offer mixed opinions about the experience — most have a positive outlook, even as they recognize certain downsides Users of online dating are generally positive — but far from universally so — about the pros and cons of dating digitally. At the same time, the proportion of Americans who say that they met their current partner online has doubled in the last eight years.
Perhaps not surprisingly, finding suitable partners is easier in urban areas than in suburban areas, and far easier than in rural areas. On the other hand, a substantial minority of these users agree that meeting people online can have potential negative consequences: And this is especially true for those at the upper end of the socio-economic spectrum: Not surprisingly, young adults—who have near-universal rates of social networking site use and have spent the bulk of their dating lives in the social media era—are significantly more likely than older social media users to have experienced all three of these situations in the past. These young adults are now more likely than any other age group to use mobile dating apps. One in five online daters have asked someone to help them review their profile. Younger adults are also more likely than older ones to say that their relationship began online. On one hand, a majority of online dating users agree that dating digitally has distinct advantages over other ways of meeting romantic partners: Census Bureau can be found at: Even those who are seeking relationships are not dating frequently. For young adults in particular, this overall increase in online dating usage has been accompanied by a dramatic increase in the use of mobile dating apps. Census Bureau in Telephone interviews were conducted in English and Spanish by landline 1, and cell phone 1,, including without a landline phone. General public attitudes towards online dating have become much more positive in recent years, and social networking sites are now playing a prominent role when it comes to navigating and documenting romantic relationships. Still, bars remain a relatively popular place for long-term relationships to begin. Marriage rates then receded as the ranks of both the widowed and the never-married increased. The results in this report are based on data from telephone interviews conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International from April 17 to May 19, , among a sample of 2, adults, age 18 and older. African-Americans and English-speaking Hispanics are more likely than whites never to have married. This is especially true for women, for those who have been widowed or divorced, and for older singles. The remainder cited a variety of other ways they met, such as growing up together. At the same time, the proportion of Americans who say that they met their current partner online has doubled in the last eight years. Yet even among the youngest adults, the zest for romance is somewhat muted: A detailed look at online dating is now available at: A national survey by Pew Research Center, conducted June July 12, , among 2, adults, finds that: Social networking sites offer a new online venue for navigating the world of dating and relationships Today six out of every ten Americans use social networking sites SNS such as Facebook or Twitter, and these sites are often intertwined with the way they experience their past and present romantic relationships:
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