· Your Online Dating Preferences Don’t Matter to Me. The problem I see when I talk to other men on the topic is that they all pick their own area to ignore. This reader finds it AdReal Singles. No Games No Gimmicks! Meaningful Relationships Start Here. Start Living and Meet Amazing 40+ Men. Isn't it Time to Embrace Your Moment? AdCompare Top 10 Online Dating Sites - Try the Best Dating Sites Today!Types: All Ages Dating Sites, Senior Dating Sites, Gay Dating Sites AdFind Love With the Help Of Top 5 Dating Sites. Make a Year to Remember! Online Dating Has Already Changed The Lives of Millions of People. Join Today AdPremium Service Designed Specifically for Muslims. Join Free Now ... read more
The machine learning classification methods are used to find the important factors predicting messaging behaviors. At last strategic behavior is analyzed and we find that there are different strategic behaviors for men and women. Although users do not know the centrality indices of themselves and their potential partners, compared with men, for women sending messages there is a stronger positive correlation between the centrality indices of women and men, and more women are inclined to send messages to people more popular than themselves.
This paper provides a foundation for gender-specific preference of potential mate choice in online dating. On the one hand, this study can provide references for the online dating sites to design better recommendation systems. On the other hand, an in-depth understanding of mate preference, such as the compatibility scores, can help users to select the most appropriate and reliable mates.
There are still some limitations for the paper. In fact, BMI can compensate for the disadvantages of wages or education [ 65 ]. Secondly, we only have the message sending data and lack the reply data, which makes it impossible for us to study the interaction between users. Ranking effects caused by recommendation algorithms in online environments have been shown to influence the music people select [ 66 ] and the politicians people favor [ 67 ]. In real life, sending a message to another user is usually not affected by a single attribute.
Fifthly, there are significant differences between Chinese and western cultures, and the website is only for heterosexual users, thus the conclusions of this paper may not be applicable to western society or homosexual people [ 68 , 69 ]. There are several avenues for future research. We can examine the influence of recommendation algorithms on potential mate choice in online dating. We can also use the results obtained in the paper to further study the problem of stable matching for potential mate choice.
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Now imagine the following scenarios:. When the reader above said there needs to be reasonable bounds, I agree…and I think those bounds are set by the writer of the profile, not the writer of the first email. Does that mean men should never take a risk?
Absolutely not! If a year-old woman states she wants to date men between the ages of 25 and 35, I totally support a year-old guy contacting her.
As I said, there is logic here. Even if the woman who is 45 listed her age range as 35 to Why not? Maybe this could be a starting point but I would still argue that you take other things into account before contacting: do she mention age requirements in her profile text? Do you match all the other requirements listed? Do you share a lot of hobbies? Based on those questions, sure, there are probably times where taking a risk to contact her is reasonable.
For a second example, Match. Why would Match. com take the time to develop this feature? Show source. Show detailed source information? Register for free Already a member? Log in. More information. Supplementary notes.
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EPJ Data Science volume 8 , Article number: 12 Cite this article. Metrics details. We find that for women, network measures of popularity and activity of the men they contact are significantly positively associated with their messaging behaviors, while for men only the network measures of popularity of the women they contact are significantly positively associated with their messaging behaviors.
Thirdly, compared with men, women attach great importance to the socio-economic status of potential partners and their own socio-economic status will affect their enthusiasm for interaction with potential mates. Further, we use the ensemble learning classification methods to rank the importance of factors predicting messaging behaviors, and find that the centrality indices of users are the most important factors.
Finally, by correlation analysis we find that men and women show different strategic behaviors when sending messages. Compared with men, for women sending messages, there is a stronger positive correlation between the centrality indices of women and men, and more women tend to send messages to people more popular than themselves. These results have implications for understanding gender-specific preference in online dating further and designing better recommendation engines for potential dates.
The research also suggests new avenues for data-driven research on stable matching and strategic behavior combined with game theory. As a special type of social networking sites [ 1 , 2 , 3 ], online dating sites have emerged as popular platforms for single people to seek potential romance. According to a recent survey, nearly 40 million single people out of 54 million in the U. Although some psychologists have questioned the reliability and effectiveness of online dating [ 5 ], recent empirical studies using the tracking data and survival analysis found that for heterosexual couples, meeting partners through online dating sites can speed up marriage [ 6 ].
Besides, one survey found that marriages initiated through online channels are slightly less likely to break than through traditional offline channels and have a slightly higher level of marital satisfaction for the respondents [ 7 ].
Mate choice and marital decisions, because of their importance to the formation and evolution of society, have drawn wide attention of scholars from different fields. Two hypotheses, potentials-attract and likes-attract, have been proposed to explain the preference and choice of long-term mates [ 8 ].
The potentials-attract means that people choose mates matched with their sex-specific traits indicating reproductive potentials: men pay more attention than women to youthfulness, health, and physical attractiveness of partners which are the characteristics of fertile mates, while women pay more attention than men to ambition, social status, financial wealth, and commitment of partners which are the characteristics of good providers.
In fact, analyzing gender differences of online identity reconstruction in an online social network revealed that men value personal achievements more while women value physical attractiveness more [ 11 ]. From the perspective of evolutionary and social psychology [ 12 ], the difference in parental investment strategies determines the different mate selection strategies for both sexes [ 13 ]. Empirical studies on offline dating showed that mate choice is very much in line with the evolutionary predictions of parental investment theory on which potentials-attract hypothesis is founded [ 14 , 15 ], while one research on a Chinese online dating site showed that mate choice is more consistent with the likes-attract hypothesis [ 8 ].
From a sociological perspective, compared with the offline environment, online dating largely expands the search scope of potential mates [ 16 , 17 ]. The Internet allows users to form relationships with strangers whom they did not know before, whether through online or offline channels. For individuals who are difficult to find potential partners through offline channels, such as homosexuals and middle aged and elderly heterosexuals, the Internet provides an ideal platform for them to meet their partners.
The preference of people for mate selection has been extensively studied [ 18 , 19 , 20 , 21 ], such as the preference on education level [ 22 ], age [ 23 ] and race [ 24 , 25 ].
The matching pattern or the choice for potential mates, shows a homophily phenomenon [ 26 , 27 ], that is, people prefer to choose mates who are similar to themselves. Three possible reasons lead to homophily. First, similar people are more likely to have the same hobbies and reach the same places, thus it is easier to see each other [ 17 ]. Second, there exists homophily for the relationship from the introduction of friends and relatives [ 28 ]. By analyzing OkCupid data [ 21 ], Lewis found that although there is a similarity preference for partner selection, the preference is not always symmetrical for men and women.
On some online dating platforms, users can browse the profiles of the other users anonymously, without leaving any trace of visit. A recent study on a major North American online dating site found that anonymous users viewed more profiles than nonanonymous ones, however nonanonymity can achieve better matching results [ 29 ].
Economists usually study mate choice and marriage problem from the perspective of game theory and strategic behavior [ 30 , 31 , 32 , 33 , 34 , 35 ]. Considering the difference of mate choice for both sexes in marriage market, Becker regarded the marriage matching problem of mate choice as a frictionless matching process, and by constructing a matching model, Becker proved that the mate choice is not random, but a careful personal choice of attributes [ 30 , 31 ], which is later extended to a barging matching by Pollak et al.
Marriage market is the first stage of a multi-stage game and corresponds with the Pareto efficiency of equilibrium. In the Internet age, Lee and Niederle launched a two-stage experiment in online dating market using rose-for-proposal signals [ 36 ], and found that sending a preference signal can increase the acceptance rate.
Some other scholars also studied the mate preference from the economic perspective [ 37 , 38 ]. For example, Fisman et al. found that male selectivity is invariant to size of female group, while female selectivity is strongly increasing in size of male group [ 37 ]. Computer scientists usually study online dating from the perspective of user behaviors [ 39 , 40 , 41 ] and recommendation systems [ 4 , 42 , 43 , 44 ].
By analyzing online dating data, Xia et al. Xia et al. also proposed a reciprocal recommendation system for online dating based on similarity measures [ 4 ]. For general social networks, gender differences lead to obvious differences in behaviors and preferences between men and women. Research on an online-game society showed that females perform better economically and are less risk-taking than males, and they are also significantly different from males in managing their social networks [ 45 ].
Another research found sex-related differences in communication patterns in a large dataset of mobile phone records and showed the existence of temporal homophily [ 46 ]. We also use ensemble learning classifiers to sort the importance of various potential factors predicting messaging behaviors.
This study is based on a complete anonymized dataset extracted in from a large online dating site in China for only heterosexual users. The dating site provides many features common to other popular online dating platforms: it allows users to set up a profile, browse the profiles of potential mates, be browsed by the potential mates, and send and receive messages. There are three data tables in the dataset, including female profiles, male profiles and the user behavior data.
There are total , users in the dataset including , male users and , female users. The dating site requires the registered users to be at least 18 years old at the time of registration, thus on the platform the minimum user age is There are totally 4,, records in the user behavior data, and the numbers of rec , click and msg are 3,,, , and 34,, respectively.
In online dating, there are significant gender differences in terms of attribute preference, self-presentation and interaction [ 47 ]. Figures 1 and 2 show the age difference and height difference distributions, respectively. As a comparison, we also show the randomized results by assuming that female male users randomly send messages to male female users. Age difference distribution. FM represents that female users send messages to male users and MF represents that male users send messages to female users.
Height difference distribution. In most times and places, women usually marry older men [ 48 , 49 ]. Figure 1 shows that in modern Chinese society, on average, men prefer women two years younger than them and women prefer men two years older than them. However, the range of age difference that women accept is smaller than that of men: the minimum age women accept is that men are 11 years younger than them and the maximum age they accept is that men are 23 years older than them, while the minimum age men accept is that women are 25 years younger than them and the maximum age they accept is that women are 28 years older than them.
If only the age difference distributions are considered, in line with previous findings from a range of cultures and religions [ 50 ], we find that the range of ages that women are willing to message is narrower than the range of ages that men are willing to message. Male and female preferences are not random; they seek potential dates with a smaller age difference than predicted by random selection, which shows the characteristic of likes-attract.
Figure 2 shows that generally the height difference for women sending messages to men most are 12 cm are larger than that for men sending messages to women most are 10 cm when choosing potential mates. In China, for men, the ideal height difference is that they are 10 cm taller than the person they message, while for women, the ideal height difference is that they are 12 cm shorter than the person they message.
According to the data from Yahoo! dating personal advertisements, for users in the U. In Fig. Females show the characteristic of likes-attract in terms of preference for height. As is same with age, users seek potential mates with a smaller height difference than predicted by random selection, although the difference is not as obvious as age difference.
For impression management considerations [ 52 ], users can exaggerate their personal characteristics [ 53 ]. For example, a recent research on online self-reported height against objectively measured data in young Australian adults revealed that self-reported height is significantly overestimated by a mean of 1. Men lie more than women about their height, which is also found in the online daters of New York City [ 55 ]. We note that users seem to have not accurately reported their physical height in the dating site.
In the dataset, the average heights of female and male users are However, in real world the average heights of adult females and males in China are However we also notice that in the dating site, the average ages of male and female users are The dating population is younger than the overall adult population, thus is likely taller, and users may not exaggerate their height by quite as much as calculated.
preferring not to select the receivers with attribute j. Employment preferences are shown in Figs. We find that compared with males sending messages to females, when female users send messages to male users, there is a stronger preference for the employments of their potential mates.
At the same time, we also find that in these data, men engaged in housekeeping only send messages to women in accounting and men engaged in translation industry only send messages to women who are private owners, which may be due to the small sample size of user behavior with respect to these attributes. Employment preference for male users sending messages to female users. The vertical axis indicates the male occupations and the horizontal axis indicates the female occupations.
Preference values are represented by different colors. Employment preference for female users sending messages to male users. The vertical axis indicates the female occupations and the horizontal axis indicates the male occupations. From Fig. Most people in these four occupations have high income or are well-educated.
Unpopular male users are school students, salesmen and those engaged in other uncategorized occupations. At the same time, women engaged in chemical industry tend to seek men engaged in education and training, women engaged in sports tend to seek men who are private owners, and women engaged in police only send messages to men engaged in finance and real estate in these data, which may also be attributed to the small sample size of user behavior with respect to these attributes.
Education levels have a significant impact on mating and marriage [ 22 ]. Education level preferences are shown in Figs. In China, like in the other countries, postdoctor also refers to a position rather than an educational achievement.
However, in many Chinese websites, when a user registers, postdoctor is also considered an education level beyond obtaining a PhD. Similarly we find that compared with males sending messages to females, when female users send messages to male users, there is a stronger preference for the education level of their potential mates.
Figure 5 shows that men whose education level is below the undergraduate degree tend to look for women the same academic qualifications as them or lower than their qualifications, men with education level higher than bachelor degree but lower than doctoral degree tend to look for women with bachelor degree, and men with a PhD degree or postdoctoral training tend to look for women with graduate degree.
In terms of preference for education levels, generally men show likes-attract characteristic. For female users sending messages to male users, Fig. In terms of preference for education levels, generally women show potentials-attract characteristic.
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At last strategic behavior is analyzed and we find that there are different strategic behaviors for men and women. Pizzato L, Rej T, Chung T, Koprinska I, Kay J RECON: a reciprocal recommender for online dating. Educational homophily in online mate selection. source references Available to download in PNG, PDF, XLS format. Soc Netw Anal Min Article Google Scholar Finkel EJ, Eastwick PW, Karney BR, Reis HT, Sprecher S Online dating: a critical analysis from the perspective of psychological science. PDF format.Castro FN, Hattori WT, de Araújo Lopes F Relationship maintenance or preference satisfaction? A paid subscription is required for full access. Figure 8. Breiman L Bagging predictors. Am Online dating preferences Rev — Becker GS A theory of marriage: part I. Funding The study was partially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China grant no.