If you feel a blush in your cheeks whenever your use of online dating sites or dating apps is about to be exposed, take courage: A new Pew Research Center survey finds that these romance-kindling resources are growing in adoption, particularly for those in the 18-24 age group.
A total of 15 percent of American adults say they’ve used online dating sites or mobile dating apps, according to Pew’s national survey conducted June 10-July 12, 2015, with 2,001 adults participating. This is up from 11 percent of adults who said the same in 2013.
The increase was most evident in the 18-24 age group, which saw its adoption of online dating sites or mobile dating apps nearly triple from 10 percent in 2013 to 27 percent in 2015. This age group is also the most likely to use mobile dating apps, with 22 percent saying they use these apps. In 2013, only 5 percent reported using mobile dating apps.
Pew also finds that 12 percent of American adults ages 55-64 say they use online dating sites or mobile apps, double the 6 percent response in 2013.
The survey also asked respondents about their experiences with digital dating. Among those who have used online dating, 80 percent say it’s a good way to meet people, while 62 percent say online dating yields better matches, and 61 percent say online dating is easier and more efficient than alternatives.
Predictably enough, responses for those who haven’t used online dating are less favorable. For instance, 60 percent of those who haven’t used online dating say it’s more dangerous than other ways of meeting people, compared with 45 percent of those who have used online dating who say the same. Also, 24 percent of those who haven’t used online dating say people who use online dating are desperate, compared with 16 percent of those who have used online dating who say the same.
Pew notes that men and women have similar views on the pros and cons of online dating, the exception being the topic of personal safety. About 53 percent of women who have used online dating agree with the statement that it’s more dangerous than other ways of meeting, while 38 percent of men who have used online dating agree.