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In 2003, a young Mark Zuckerberg sat in front of his computer and instant-messaged a friend.
A quarter of all Canadians have tried Internet dating, and 16 per cent have had sex with someone they met online.Why settle down when a better match is just a click away?And where is the incentive to work through relationship difficulty when it’s so easy to access alternatives?K.-based online dating executive Dan Winchester, who predicts, “The future will see better relationships, but more divorce.” Internet dating sites, supporters say, create a larger and more fluid “dating marketplace,” which in turn yields better and more compatible matches.On the flip side, this bustling new marketplace, with its steady pace of transactions, might threaten traditional marriage.On the day of the announcement, the stock price of Inter Active Corp—the parent site of online dating behemoths —dropped by more than two per cent. Over the past two decades, the Internet has become a fixture of the modern-day romance plot.
In the early ’90s, just one per cent of new relationships began online.
The dating site e Harmony claims an average of 542 members marry every day in America.
As online dating becomes the dominant path to relationships, it shifts the way these unions are built.
But as dating-through-device becomes a primary medium for romance, it seems likely that our end goal—traditionally commitment, and often marriage—will also change.
Online dating has already altered our romantic psyche—most significantly by assuring us that new options are always waiting.
“The other side is there will be more breakups, because people won’t feel imprisoned in relationships that aren’t right.” And that, Slater and others predict, could erode the values of commitment.