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I was really hoping this article would have ended differently.But after spending countless hours scanning tiny pixelated squares of people who were supposed to represent my mathematically determined soul mate, I found that online dating websites are modern-day versions of snake oil.In essence, the researchers had ripped apart the unscientific claims of dating websites with three compelling arguments 1) no one knows the recipe for love, so a man-made algorithm can’t fare any better 2) scanning profiles leads us to select on superficial traits, and 3) online communicating is a really bad way to start off a love affair. Impossible Claims From Algorithms “We might compare the understanding and prediction of romantic outcomes to attempts to understand and predict the stock market,” the research asserted.“Although economists know a great deal about how the stock market behaves and why, attempts to predict the behavior of the market at a specific point in the future have limited accuracy.” If you think about it, dating sites basically claim to predict the future, arguing that they have a crystal ball with a higher probability of users ending up in romantic utopia.Per the researchers,”people’s idiosyncratic self-reported preferences for certain characteristics in hypothetical romantic partners appear to be irrelevant to their romantic outcomes with specific potential partners they have actually met in person.” Another study found that College students who attended a speed dating event 10 days after evaluating potential study buddies online ended up being physically attracted, but not romantically, to the people they met in person who had their ideal traits.Indeed, middle-aged couples who have strong preferences for particular traits were just as head-over-heels with their long-term partner whether they possessed those characteristics.A mix of social networking, compatibility testing, and online dating, Ok Cupid is unusual in that it allows its members to create the matching questions already pre-determined at sites like e Harmony or Chemistry.

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It is more than likely that these factors account for their success, not anything inherent in their model.

Perhaps the greatest treatise why matching people on similarity doesn’t necessarily work out was put forth by the great 1980’s social philosopher, Paula Abdul, in her critically acclaimed “Opposites Attract” Online Dating Does Not Lead To Better Outcomes My experiment through the online dating minefield began as a fight with e Harmony’s data scientist, over a blog post claiming that e Harmony marriages had a lower divorce rate than other common ways of finding a lifemate.

According to e Harmony, matches had the lowest divorce rate compared to couples who met in school, through family, at church, through or at bar.

It’s Just Lunch paired me with the absolute worst and one of the best dates I had experienced (I have never had a date physically run out on me before).

So, despite my less-than-stellar experience with online dating, I’ll probably continue with an all-of-the-above approach.

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