Pew research center online dating

Forty-one percent of the 2001 survey takers, who were surely sick of answering questions by this point, said they know someone who practices digital dating.

And 29 percent know someone who has hit the jackpot and walked away with a spouse or a long-term significant other on their arm.

There's no way to gauge whether this number is low or high compared with other venues for meeting people, but it's interesting that it hasn't budged more as online dating has become more popular and more accepted. For such pairings that are a decade old or younger, that figure is 11%.

And 1% of America's serious relationships began online in the olden days, more than 10 years ago.

On a pessimistic note, Pew reports that 45 percent of online dating users agree that online dating is more dangerous than analog dating.

About 31 percent believe online dating deters commitment, because there are just so many fish in the digital sea.

It's no surprise that as Americans live more of their lives online, some of that time will lead to romance, and the Internet will gain prominence as a site of matchmaking, just as college campuses, bars, coffee shops, offices and gyms have before it.

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Roughly 27 percent of Americans aged 18 to 24 currently claim to use online dating. And, if you wonder why grandma spends more time on the Apple PC than the apple pie, the number of singles in the 55- to 64-year-old range who digitally date has doubled from 6 percent to 12 percent since 2013, according to Pew.

With the promise of algorithmic matching and big pools of single people, the Internet should be a serious-committed-relationships machine.

And that should only improve as those algorithms are refined and that pool grows bigger. Compared with 2005, the rate of online matches that evolve into marriages or other long-term partnerships remains about the same (23% today, versus 17% in 2005 — "statistically similar" numbers, according to Pew). According to Pew, 5% of all current American marriages or other long-term partnerships began online.

Online dating is shedding its stigma as a refuge for the desperate, but people who use sites such as and e Harmony are still in the minority.

Thirty-eight percent of Americans who are "single and looking" say they've used an online dating site or mobile dating app, according to a new study.

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