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At the time, internet dating was the domain of the young, something no one younger than 35 would think twice about. Online dating may seem like a young person’s game, but according to many sociologists, the phenomenon was almost unheard of among users younger than 25.University of California assistant professor of sociology Kevin Lewis told Digital Trends that, along with older users who, in many cases, continue to stigmatize online dating, “the other population that’s been a little bit slow that way is college students. They’re still surrounded by people their age and a bunch of other eligibles.and the next thing you know, falling in love is forever changed.Vox recently analyzed data from 35 years’ worth of wedding announcements in The New York Times, and found that “online” now ranks as the third most common way people meet — second only to “school” and “mutual friend.” In the older-than-40 age range, it creeps into the second spot. We already trust our computers to do our shopping and banking, why shouldn’t the fruits of the home computer revolution help us find love?Another survey noted a 13 percent increase, and that Yahoo Personals captured the top spot in the field.Which means, of course, that the first wave of Yahoo Personals babies should be turning 10 this year.“We’re at an important moment because more and more of our lives are happening online,” Klinerberg said.“And we don’t know how to track it.” The stigma on online dating was still strong in 2005, the first year Pew studied such information.

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Gay users have also been early adopters for similar reasons.It would be another mobile app, however, launched the same year as Grindr, that would transform online dating forever.“We were really focused on mobile,” Jonathan Badeen, Tinder co-founder and chief strategy officer, tells Digital Trends.The extremely influential 2012 paper “Searching for a Mate: The Rise of the Internet as a Social Intermediary” by Michael J. Thomas of The City College of New York also notes that research into the internet’s impact on social dating norms was, in a word, lacking.“Scholarly debate about the social impacts of the Internet has been hampered by a lack of nationally representative data on how (or whether) people use the Internet to meet new friends or partners,” the paper explains.

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