Cupid’s algorithm: Do dating sites know love’s formula?

“To date, there is no compelling evidence any online dating matching algorithm actually works.”

 

Those words from Eli Finkel, associate professor of social psychology at the Northwestern University in Chicago, are likely to ring true with any online daters still to find love on the web.

 

Yet with Valentine’s Day often bringing out the worst snuggly excesses of loved-up couples, both in public and on websites like Facebook, singletons may well find themselves tempted to give one of the many online dating sites a try in an attempt to find The One.

 

However, while sites such as Match.com claim their algorithms can help generate genuine potential suitors, Mr Finkel, writing in a recent paper in the Psychological Science in the Public Interest, argued such boasts need more rigorous testing before they can ever be taken seriously.

 

“If dating sites want to claim that their matching algorithm is scientifically valid, they need to adhere to the standards of science, which is something they have uniformly failed to do,” he wrote.

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