Dating site data on mate preferences

Dating sites hold a huge wealth of information on human behavior. We may say we are this, or want to be that, but data takes our opinions out of the loop and shows us the facts. Mate preferences are a big piece of the puzzle when understanding people.

What do men prefer and what do women prefer when it comes to a mate? The age of big data shows some clear trends. We can all have our own preference for a type of mate – be it blonds, older women, younger women, long hair, short hair, whatever – but large chucks of aggregated data show us that there are more universal preferences. The dating site (which I have never been to) is so kind to share their data with the world. Have a look at see what our subconscious minds are telling us. The data here is not from a survey! Our conscious minds will come up with all kinds of bullshit, but big data IS our subconscious mind and it has some interesting things to say.

For one, women tend to look for men around their own age. Men, however, regardless of age, tend to search more for women in their early 20’s. If that wasn’t shallow enough, we see that attractiveness exponentially outweighs other criteria. Good looking people get far more messages on OK Cupid than their average counterparts. There is even data from a job site which shows the same searching trends by men. They look for female candidates the same way they look for female partners.

What are we to conclude about this data? We’re shallow? We knew that, didn’t we. The big take-away should be that we are run by our subconscious mind. That mind is universal and eternal. No matter what we consciously say, no matter we want humanity to be, this is what we really are. You can hide your head in the sand or you can try to understand why it is so and carve out a good life for yourself. Take a look, just one of the benefits of all the data we’re accumulating.

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/sep/28/seven-secrets-of-dating-from-the-experts-at-okcupid

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