Skip to main content

More Americans are using online dating than ever before, but it still sucks

Dating can be especially treacherous, and technology hasn’t necessarily helped. 

A new poll published Thursday by Pew Research Center found that three in ten Americans have used a dating app, more than ever before, even though many found the process disappointing. 

Pew surveyed nearly 5,000 U.S. adults, 45% of which who’ve used a dating app said their recent experience “left them feeling more frustrated than hopeful.” 

Finding a compatible partner, one who shares the same hobbies, interests, and physical attractiveness, is “somewhat” easy, according to the poll, but getting the right amount of attention, i.e. messages or people who also want to meet in person, varies between men and women. 

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Men are more likely to say they did not receive as many DMs as they would have liked, whereas 24% of women said the same.

The poll points out that attitudes toward online dating has swiftly changed from negative to positive within the last two decades since they were introduced, but getting what you expect from online dating is a different story. 

With dozens of dating apps out there, and experts expecting the industry to balloon to nearly $12 billion, why are users still subjected to such negative experiences? Do the platforms just suck, or do the people? 

Search the web and you will find a plethora of rants on the topic. Ask a friend about their recent Tinder date and be inundated with details that make your skin crawl. It seems like nearly everyone (online at least) has had a not-so-nice night out with a stranger they met online.  

Despite all the anecdotes out there, the facts don’t change — more than 30% of Americans use dating apps, a number expected to continually rise. The way we date has changed for good. Dating apps have allowed hopeless romantics to meet new people and develop new relationships in ways so simple, all you have to do is swipe your finger. And there’s even been some solid success. 

According to the same poll, 12% of people have gotten married or have been in a committed relationship with someone they met on an app. For those who identify as LGBT, the percentage is higher

Sure, it sucks. But online dating is sticking around. 

Editors' Recommendations

Meira Gebel
Meira Gebel is a freelance reporter based in Portland. She writes about tech, social media, and internet culture for Digital…
Robot crushes man to death after mistaking him for a box
A smart factory concept.

A robot crushed a man to death after apparently mistaking him for a box, South Korean media reported.

The tragedy occurred on Wednesday evening local time at a vegetable sorting facility in South Gyeongsang province about 150 miles south of Seoul, according to the BBC.

Read more
Amazon expands Fresh grocery delivery for non-Prime members
A person delivery an Amazon Fresh order to a customer's home.

Amazon is expanding its Fresh grocery deliveries to non-Prime members nationwide.

The company started offering the service to non-Prime members in 12 cities in August, but on Thursday, Amazon said it was expanding to locations across the country.

Read more
UFC PPV: How much is the UFC 295 PPV?
A UFC championship belt sitting on a table.

MMA fans are getting treated to a big UFC event tomorrow: UFC 295, which will see Jiří Procházka take on Alex Pereira, and since it's a pay-per-view, you'll need to hand over some cash to tune in. ESPN+ is the only outlet for streaming live UFC pay-per-view events like these in the United States, so if you're looking for a way to enjoy all the action online, read on. We've got everything you need to know about UFC pay-per-views on ESPN+, including how to sign up, how much it costs, and how you can save.

ESPN+ is a premium streaming service for all things sports, from MMA and boxing to soccer and much, much more. Since launching its streaming platform in 2018, ESPN has continued to develop a very close relationship with the Ultimate Fighting Championship, and in 2023, ESPN+ is the go-to app for streaming UFC content. It's also the only outlet where you can watch UFC pay-per-view events online. ESPN+ is compatible with virtually all modern PC web browsers and streaming-capable devices, which includes smartphones, tablets, smart TVs, and Xbox and PlayStation gaming consoles.

Read more