Internet Dating Experiment

Internet Dating Experiment

internet dating

The announcement of meetings on the Internet. The impact of social inducing similarity
Christine Petr, Nicolas Guéguen (June 2008)

The announcement of internet dating experiencing a rapid development and large enterprises are born to manage the launch of such products. Yet little work has been devoted to this theme. The objective of research work that we present here is to make an analysis of modes of presentation and promotion of men and women on these sites and then conduct research experimental basis to study the effect of certain social factors on the judgement ads and behaviour answers to these ads. The study of the impact of the perceived level of familiarity between an issuer of ad (which he or she writes) and a receiver (the one that analysis or not to take the decision to respond) will be the object of research here. We studied particularly the impact of social factors giving the impression that the advertiser is close to the receiver (what we call the feeling of familiarity).

The objective of this project was on the one hand to enable a comprehensive review of literature on the process of seduction and in particular those at work on the Internet. On the other hand, the project also aims to initiate work moose to study the factors, and test the impact of the similarity between informational targets announcement encounters on the Internet.

Two components were initiated by this research program. The first one aimed at a comprehensive review of scientific literature on the one hand and imitation égotisme implied to be substrates theoretical and methodological research that we wanted personal conduct and, secondly, work on the role of the Internet in the seduction and the meeting.
1st axis. Analysis of literature.

The goal of this axis was to make an exhaustive analysis of the literature on the impact of familiarity on human behaviour, making the round of research work on the égotisme implicit and finally to search and reading fairly exhaustive scientific work on seduction and the meeting on the Internet. The goal was threefold: 1) support a solid theoretical knowledge, empirical and methodological on these themes 2) exploiting their knowledge through the publication of a book and work on the synthesis of these themes and 3) allow withdrawals this analysis of theoretical and methodological transferable to the field of influence consumer behaviour and buying behavior of Internet users.

The results of this axis are presented in the preamble of each experience.
Experiment 1.

Prerequisite theoretical.

The psychology has demonstrated on many occasions, the impact of a belief on behavior. However, research also shows that in terms of seduction, beliefs also have an impact on the behaviour of different actors. Snyder, Decker Tanke and Berscheid (1977) have used students to perform the following experiment. It was presented as a study of the processes involved in the communication without face-to-face. It was said about he would have to initiate a telephone conversation with someone other student like him. Here, a boy conversait always with a girl. It called for each subject photography partner and some biographical information order obtained by questionnaire. The photo of the partner corresponded to that of a girl particularly attractive or not attractive. Of course, that did not correspond to the picture of the real partner that she was not aware of the manipulation underway and which had not received pictures and information on its partner. The telephone conversation started then for 10 minutes at the end of the conversation, the boy should reflect his impression of his partner with a list of adjectives on intelligence, physical attractiveness, the social adaptation … The latter, meanwhile, estimated the conversation she had with the boy in terms of enjoyment, pleasure later, his perception of physical attractiveness and that his partner had its place, the image that his partner s Had made it. Finally, the contents of the conversation the woman was evaluated by the method of judges and they should estimate how much she was enthusiastic and alive, how his conversation was intimate and personal, at what point she was in good spirits . Another group of judges conducting the same assessment from recordings of boys.

The results show that boys who believed interact with a girl physically attractive anticipate that it is sociable, it has humour, it is balanced while they anticipate that antisocial, serious, socially non-adapted , Clumsy when it is supposed to physically unattractive.

The method has allowed judges to see that the behaviour of the target falsely attributed as attractive statistically differed from that of targets falsely attributed not attractive young daughter appeared to be more assured, better mood, showing more animation and enjoying their best partner. The behaviour of the boy with falsely attractive target was also rated as more sociable, humorous, more daring, with more demonstrations, more sexually daring. At the same time, girls who have been led to believe the boy felt that they were appealing the latter as more attractive, more assured and having a conversation more animated.

Our experimentation.

It seems that it is not necessary to see a beautiful person so that we change our behavior, just think. This research has served to advance theoretical and methodological in an experiment conducted on the Internet.

In a simulated encounter on the Internet. We gave to students from Internet ads composed for the occasion from actual texts. A photograph of the target was present and it was, as the case, a photograph of a young girl attractive or unattractive or a young man also attractive or less attractive physically.

It asked the subjects (boys and girls) to draft a mail in order “to succeed, employing about originals, hang the person and obtain an interaction by mail begins.” It asked the boys as girls to a text of 15-25 lines. A lexical analysis by the method of judges (judges were women in the case of responses from men and by men in cases of responses from women) was held along with an analysis of the quality grammatical and spelling syntactic .

Results achieved.

The average individual measurements are given in the table below.

Table 1: average (standard deviation in parentheses) within two experimental conditions in the number of words per message, the rate of spelling and grammar and sentence by assessing the likelihood of meeting the target produced by judges.

Announcement of Women
Target attractive target not attractive Comparison
Number of words per message 312.4 (88.7) 190.4 (63.3) t (42) = 5.25
p <.001, d = 1.62
Errors of spelling and grammar 0.38 (0.26) 0.62 (0.45) t (42) = 2.17
p <.04 d = 0.67
Chance meet (>: higher probability) 7.11 (1.74) 5.73 (2.31) t (42) = 2.24
p <.03 d = 0.69
Announcement Men
Target attractive target not attractive Comparison
Number of words per message 527.6 (101.4) 368.2 (96.3) t (38) = 5.10
p <.001, d = 1.66
Errors of spelling and grammar 0.21 (0.15) 0.33 (0.20) t (38) = 5.10
p <.04 d = 0.71
Chance meet (>: higher probability) 6.93 (0.98) 5.42 (1.71) t (38) = 3.43
p <.002, d = 1.11

The results show that the texts were regarded as more original and more romantic when the young woman was attractive or not attractive when the young man was attractive target rather than non-attractive. In addition, the results show that, on average, expression and the level grammatical and spelling was better when the boys were supposed to write a response to a girl that physically attractive or not attractive when girls were supposed to write a response for a young man physically attractive than non-attractive.


It seems that stereotypes create their own social reality. The stereotype has an effect on the initial perception of the person but also on the behaviour that we adopt in its place. As a consequence, in turn, see the target behave confirming the stereotype. It appears that, on the Internet, these effects are achieved. You could believe that these social variables do that in the case of face-to-face or social relationship developed. It seems that this is nothing.
Experience 2.

Prerequisite theoretical.

We know that people who have common characteristics are more likely to marry: age, CSP, nearby residential, physical attractiveness, personality. We also know there are some linkages between the initial or commençante syllable of the name and last name and the name of the city where we live, the name of the profession that we occupy and some preferences for certain products. Quite naturally, researchers have attempted to go further in the investigation of these strange pairing.

To verify this, Kopelman and Lang (1985) examined 42457 couples on lists from 1920 to 1984 mainly Who’s Who of America. They measured where 2 names contained the same syllable commençante. They then compared the frequency with the frequency expected from an analysis of probabilities based on the frequency of letters commencement of names of men and women. Thus, depending on the frequency, initials of the names of men and women, they were able to calculate the probabilities of matching randomly ie under the assumption that this factor of the original or the syllable has no effect. For example, if the S as original name was found in 20% of cases in men and 15% among women, the probability of an S S is a wife of 0.2 × 0.15 = 0.03 or 3% of couples SS. These researchers will observe an association rate higher than expected. The proportions of first names of couples composed of the same syllable or initial commençante are statistically higher than the proportions of a match by chance.

In another search for Jones and his collaborators (2004), the criterion was to take the female and male names most frequently given to children at different periods (1900: Josephine, Joseph), 1920 (Andrea, Andrew) and 1960 (Christine, Christopher). 3 For these periods, again, researchers will observe a match very much higher surnames beginning with the same initial or syllable: Christine therefore more likely to marry than to marry Christopher John.

If there is a matching effect more important for the initial or syllable names, studies show the same effect with matching surnames. In a recent study by Jones, Pelham, Mirenberg and Carvallo (2004) researchers have examined the surnames of men and women on a random sample of 14534 marriages in the state of Georgia and Florida. The researchers calculated the average pairing at random for all the letters. But in reality, the matches were much higher. Statistically, there is more original surname identical in couples than what can be expected if this factor is immaterial. This effect is even more important if we take only samples of couples of Latin American origin who were married in the USA. These researchers confirm these results in another search by taking the names most frequently in the USA (Smith, Johnson, Williams, Jones and Brown ie our Martin to us). They observe, again, that Smith more likely to marry Smith than any other last name. This research is especially correlational and do not necessarily reflect a direct link of cause and effect. Also, Jones and his colleagues have asked men to read announcements of meetings on the Internet: ads supposedly written by young women. These young women gave their name as well as the first syllable of their last name as a nickname. Of course, it has ensured that, depending on the subject, this syllable matched the first syllable of their last name (Example a subject called Larry Murray had either an ad showing STACEY_MUR is STACEY_PEL). The subjects were asked to rate the girl supposed to have written this announcement. The results show that in the case of matching the syllable, subjects have evaluated the girl as being more appreciated by them, it matched their best, that they resembled more and they feel more attracted by it.

Our experimentation.

Based on previous experiments, we have taken up the idea to refine the analysis of the effect of the similarity egotistical. In the same way, through a search from sites on the Internet encounters, we have established profiles on which they might think would lead the interest of people of the opposite sex who also filed profiles. This proximity was manipulated by constructing an advertisement containing those characteristics that were expected by people seeking meetings. Several people interested in this profile were identified. Only ads containing a name (for example Elodie228, Eglantine-S …) were included in the study. At random, our announcement reflected a name whose first syllable of the name corresponded to a target. For example, if an announcement had joanna123, our announcement was jonathan27. The application allowed to know who had consulted our profile.

Results achieved.

The results show that in the event of correspondence of the first syllable names, a gain of 23% of consultations is reached. In addition, following consultations in time, we see a repetition of the largest consulting the card and a greater likelihood of receiving a message from the person of the opposite sex with the first syllable identical to ours. Moreover, the same effect will be observed when, obviously, the name was used a nickname or a diminutive of a name (for example titi306).


On the Internet proximity caused by accidental information related to the singularity of the issuer of an ad therefore operates on our preferences. Again, this effect with matching, you can invoke the theory of implied égotisme implying that what belongs to the “home” is more likely to be our particular preferences in situations where the criterion choice is limited. It is therefore possible that the correspondence of the first syllable or the initial induces a sense of familiarity, a feeling that we know the person or that we have something in common with it. However, as shown by all research, if this sentiment is well led by the similarity of the original or the syllable commençante, people are totally unaware of the influence of this similarity coincidental. One might think at first that such sentiments can not occur within the framework of social relations via the Internet. Clearly this is not the case.

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