*Direct correspondence to Rebecca M. Tippett, Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service, University of Virginia, PO Box 400206, Charlottesville, VA 22904-4206 〈firstname.lastname@example.org〉. All authors contributed equally and share authorship of this article. Data and coding used in this article are available upon request for those wishing to replicate this study. This research was partially supported by a contract, “Designing New Models for Explaining Family Change and Variation” (N01 HD-3-3354; PI. S. Philip Morgan) with the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. Data collection was carried out and funded by the Pew Foundation with partial support from Duke University. The authors thank Emilio A. Parrado, Seth Sanders, Lee Rainie, John Horrigan, Lynn Smith-Lovin, Amanda Lenhart, Mary Madden, Douglas Downey, Linda K. George, and Nathan D. Martin for helpful comments and suggestions. Early versions of this article were presented at the 2005 Southern Demographic Association Annual Meeting and the 2006 Southern Sociological Society Annual Meeting.
The Social Demography of Internet Dating in the United States*
Article first published online: 6 APR 2010
© 2010 by the Southwestern Social Science Association
Social Science Quarterly
Volume 91, Issue 2, pages 554–575, June 2010
How to Cite
Sautter, J. M., Tippett, R. M. and Morgan, S. P. (2010), The Social Demography of Internet Dating in the United States. Social Science Quarterly, 91: 554–575. doi: 10.1111/j.1540-6237.2010.00707.x
- Issue published online: 6 APR 2010
- Article first published online: 6 APR 2010
Objective. The objective of this article is to identify the sociodemographic correlates of Internet dating net of selective processes that determine who is “at risk.” We also examine the role of computer literacy, social networks, and attitudes toward Internet dating among single Internet users.
Methods. We use multivariate logistic regression to analyze 3,215 respondents from the first nationally representative U.S. survey of Internet dating.
Results. Sociodemographic factors have strong effects on Internet access and single status but weak effects on use of Internet dating services once the sample is conditioned on these factors. For this “at-risk” subpopulation, computer literacy and social networks strongly influence the likelihood of Internet dating.
Conclusions. Internet dating is a common mate selection strategy among the highly selective subpopulation of single Internet users and may continue to grow through social networks. Material and virtual elements of the digital divide have direct and indirect effects on Internet dating.