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It is possible to design a dating site that is strictly superior to all forms of traditional dating, since you can have a much larger pool to go through for good matches, and people are comfortable telling computers levels of details about their actual preferences no matchmaker is ever going to get.

Problem is, the financial incentives point in shitty, shitty directions. The more effective a dating site is at getting people into high-functioning relationships, the less repeat custom it gets. So most of them are deliberately designed to suck.

In theory, the financial incentives align right for.. eh..  the government... People in good relationships, generally being better citizens. But while it might be good policy, any politicians suggesting that the state should run a dating service is going to die from pure embarrassment.

by Thomas on Tue Oct 16th, 2018 at 08:45:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
"the state should run a dating service" like this. Very thorough. The kids will love it.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Tue Oct 16th, 2018 at 11:20:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
A dating site that actually worked - and acquired a reputation for actually working - would be a gold mine, and would be able to charge more or less what it wanted. There are plenty of people who would pay four or five figures for good odds of meeting a compatible and interested partner.

The usual milk-em-and-blik-em model of dating is for chump change. A lot of people means a lot of chump change, but it's still debatable if it's more profitable than providing a successful service.

It's interesting that the idea of government and the idea of this kind of service - which might be considered welfare, at a push - is automatically seen as distant.

It says a lot that our ideas and experiences of government automatically assume that it's not something a government would be good at.

In fact it probably implies that we assume governments are intrinsically intrusive, hostile, untrustworthy, and abusive - which is an interesting observation in itself.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Wed Oct 17th, 2018 at 01:15:15 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The gap between declared interests and revealed preferences is such that any dating site soon turns into an exhibition of human delusions or vices.

Dude, She's (Exactly 25 Percent) Out of Your League

- Almost no one messages users less desirable than they are.
Seeking Arangement could be most perfect available.
by das monde on Wed Oct 17th, 2018 at 08:25:17 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Meh, a linear ranking of desirability seems about as pseudo sciency as revealed preferences themselves.
by generic on Thu Oct 18th, 2018 at 08:37:15 AM EST
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Measuring revealed preference is not science? Then differential reproduction is not for scientists.
by das monde on Thu Oct 18th, 2018 at 05:03:53 PM EST
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Bleh, I'd say the concept of revealed preferences is the pretense that what people do is also the answer to why people do it(The actually hard question here).
by generic on Fri Oct 19th, 2018 at 12:52:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
White people prefer white people on dating apps - but that could be changed, study says
Dating applications can allow users to fall into their own racial biases while searching for a partner, a new study says.

But in their study, researchers from schools like Cornell University say the "sexual racism" that plagues apps like Grindr, Tinder and Bumble can be stamped out with a few simple changes. The end goal, the study says, is to promote more diverse pairings on the dating sites.

[...] white people are ten times more likely to receive a message from a black person on a dating app than they are to message the black user themselves. That suggests a hierarchy of attention on racial lines.

Seeking only white people by a non-white person --- is that a racial bias?
by das monde on Fri Oct 19th, 2018 at 10:31:55 AM EST
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Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Mon Oct 22nd, 2018 at 10:27:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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