Monogamy And Online Dating

Are online dating services undermining American monogamy?



Okay, we’ve got issues all over the world. But also close to home. And our hearts. People looking for love.

Online dating has become a huge avenue for seeking relationships. On any given day or night, it’s going on on a giant scale. Maybe too giant, says a new buzz.

Maybe the click and pick ease of digital date-making is undermining ideas of commitment, of standing by your man, your woman, of monogamy – let alone marriage. Making it too easy just to move on. Or not!

This hour, On Point: Online dating and its impact on relationships, on what will last.

-Tom Ashbrook


Mark Brooks, CEO of Courtland Brooks, a consulting group that serves internet dating companies.

Eli Finkel, professor of social psychology at Northwestern University.

Amanda Hess, writer for Slate.

From Tom’s Reading List

The Atlantic “The positive aspects of online dating are clear: the Internet makes it easier for single people to meet other single people with whom they might be compatible, raising the bar for what they consider a good relationship. But what if online dating makes it too easy to meet someone new? What if it raises the bar for a good relationship too high? What if the prospect of finding an ever-more-compatible mate with the click of a mouse means a future of relationship instability, in which we keep chasing the elusive rabbit around the dating track?”

The Atlantic “Unfortunately, neither Jacob’s story nor any of the evidence offered compellingly answers the questions raised. Now, let’s stipulate that there is no dataset that perfectly settles the core question: Does online dating increase or decrease commitment or its related states, like marriage?”

Slate “Why have a real relationship, Slater asks, when there are so many attractive, successful partners waiting online? I don’t know—maybe because we’re not all aimless and lazy thirtysomething straight dudes? Jacob may be meeting a buffet of sexy professionals and college students through his online dating profiles, but those women are meeting … Jacob.”

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