Why Jane Austen would approve of online dating

USA Today:

David Merkur is suddenly the poster boy for everything that’s wrong with the crass world of online dating. Merkur, a New York investment banker, created a spreadsheet to keep track of the women he was dating, most of whom he had met on Match.com. Then he e-mailed it to one of his dates, who forwarded it on to her friends, and it went viral. Naturally, some of the 11 other women Merkur dated — and rated, and tabulated — are angry.

When singles who have found matches by computer algorithm start using Excel to keep track of their relationships, perhaps it’s time to take a critical look at online dating. Have we allowed the tools of the market to intrude where they don’t belong?

Social scientists who published a study of online dating in a recent issue of Psychological Science in the Public Interest would say yes. They concluded that the claim that dating sites’ scientific algorithms help singles find soul mates is not only false but also could backfire.

Read the whole story: USA Today

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