In his new book, Love in the Time of Algorithms: What Technology Does to Meeting and Mating, writer Dan Slater argues that online dating has changed society profoundly. Y., newlywed, tells USA TODAY's Sharon Jayson just how and why.Q: What is it about online dating today that you believe has made such a big difference? Everyone has access to so many more people than they were accustomed to in the past.I started to wonder how that might affect how people approach their relationship lives.Many of my friends are married to people they met online.Many have been using online dating a long, long time and have yet to settle down.The main thing was the ubiquity of it and how it suddenly expanded the mating pool.Q: You suggest that online dating has made relationships more disposable. A: An element of commitment is based on the availability of alternatives.
That was based on my interviews with online daters and the opinions of about 90% of the industry executives I interviewed.It was a combination of the anecdotal and statistical.Q: How much science is really involved in matching people the way online dating does?A: Science can examine a couple already together and throw them in a room and watch them interact and, based on observation of their interactions, can predict the likelihood of divorce or staying together.
What has not been proven is the predictive power of two strangers.
However, what online dating does seem to be improving at is the likelihood of two strangers getting along well on a first date.