Feb 9, 2019

By the numbers: Online dating is losing its stigma

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Data: SurveyMonkey online poll; Chart: Harry Stevens/Axios

The majority of relationships today began offline, but online dating is quickly becoming the new normal and losing its stigma.

By the numbers: More than half of Americans who have used dating apps or sites said they had a positive view of online dating and 72% said they think relationships that begin online are just as or more successful than those that begin offline, according to a new Axios/Survey Monkey poll.

"Online dating had this stigma in the early 2000s where it's only losers go online ... but now, it's like, you're a loser if you're not on the sites."
— Stephanie Tong from Wayne State University told Axios
  • Half of LGBQ people polled have a positive view of online dating.
  • But the stigma remains among those who have never used a dating app or site. 65% of them had a negative view of online dating, and almost half said they think relationships are less successful if they begin online.

Between the lines: Despite a widely held assumption, even among 18-34 year olds, that dating apps are for hookups, casual sex was one of the last reasons why people said they downloaded Tinder, according to a recent study. The top reasons were:

  1. Entertainment
  2. Curiosity
  3. Socialize
  4. Love
  5. Ego boost

New game, new rules:

  • Apps like Bumble have attempted to shift gender roles in relationships, but almost half of men surveyed by Axios/Survey Monkey said that they would typically make the first move after matching with someone, compared to just 13% of women.
  • Finding love isn't always a reason to give up the apps. 11% of 18-34 year olds said that they would continue using the apps for entertainment or to find other relationships even while in a relationship.
  • 27% of people in the same age group said that people should stop using the apps only after making a verbal commitment to a relationship with someone — the most popular option.

Go deeper: Our special report on the future of dating

Go deeper

Primary elections test impact of protests, coronavirus on voting

Election official at a polling place at McKinley Technology High School in Washington, D.C. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

In the midst of a global pandemic and national protests over the death of George Floyd, eight states and the District of Columbia held primary elections on Tuesday.

Why it matters: Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee, needs to win 425 of the 479 delegates up for grabs in order to officially clinch the nomination. There are a number of key down-ballot races throughout the country as well, including a primary in Iowa that could determine the fate of Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa).

Iowa Rep. Steve King defeated in GOP primary

Rep. Steve King. Photo: Alex Wroblewski/Getty Images

State Sen. Randy Feenstra defeated incumbent Rep. Steve King in Tuesday's Republican primary for Iowa's 4th congressional district, according to the Cook Political Report.

Why it matters: King's history of racist remarks has made him one of the most controversial politicians in the country and a pariah within the Republican Party.

Updates: George Floyd protests continue past curfews

Police officers wearing riot gear push back demonstrators outside of the White House on Monday. Photo: Jose Luis Magana/AFP via Getty Images

Protests over the death of George Floyd and other police-related killings of black people continued Tuesday across the U.S. for the eighth consecutive day — prompting a federal response from the National Guard, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection.

The latest: Protesters were still out en masse even as curfews set in in New York City and Washington, D.C. Large crowds kneeled at Arizona's state capitol nearly an hour before the statewide 8 p.m. curfew, and a peaceful march dispersed in Chicago ahead of the city's 9 p.m. curfew.