For centuries, matchmaking was mostly left in the hands of parents and older relatives. During most of the 20th century, Americans chiefly relied on friends – and to a lesser extent family and even coworkers – to meet their significant other. Computer-assisted matching started as early as 1959, but the biggest shift occurred in the mid-1990s, with the birth of the first online dating websites. Now there is no turning back: Matchmaking and online dating has become a $2.5 billion dollar industry, and about 25% of U.S. couples now meet on the internet.
Jonathan Robinson thought his text exchanges with an attractive woman he met on a dating app were going so well that he asked her out. He was delighted when she said yes. But then she asked about his past relationships. After he said he was divorced, she peppered him with questions: When was the breakup? Was he really over his ex? Did he feel emotionally available? Mr. Robinson froze. Then he placed an emergency phone call—to his dating coach. “I said that my date was about to fall apart,” says the 36-year-old computer systems analyst, who lives in Allentown, Pa. “I need help.” Read More
Kate Chan, a 30-year-old digital marketer in Silicon Valley, first approached dating apps with a blend of curiosity and hope that they’d help her find a great guy. But after six months of dead-end mismatches with guys she thought were boring or work-obsessed, she has gone back to what she called “meeting the old-fashioned way”: without a screen. Read More
How do you succeed on Tinder without really trying? Some New York singles have it figured out: They pay a dating-app ghostwriter to do the flirting for them. That’s right, ladies. The next time a guy sends you a particularly witty opener on Coffee Meets Bagel, consider the possibility that it was written by a 41-year-old married mother of two on the Upper West Side. That would be Meredith Golden, New York City’s Tinder whisperer. Read More
I'm a professional Matchmaker based in Los Angeles, what I affectionately refer to as “the Baghdad of dating.”The dating scene is rough in LA (and in every other city, and in every other town,... and for our entire generation), and I have match-made and coached hundreds of women: from A-list celebrities, to successful girl bosses, to cover models, who all don't understand why they can't get into an exclusive relationship with a nice guy. Read More
As dating apps make meeting people easier than ever, matchmakers focus on not widening the pool, but narrowing it. Read More
In mid-August, couples and lonely hearts packed a Brooklyn basement to hear scientists make sense of something the crowd could not: love. It was the 11th meeting of the Empiricist League, a kind of ad-hoc, small-scale TED Talks for scientists and the New Yorkers who adore them. In the back corner of the room, Christian Rudder sat by himself at the bar, nursing Stephen King’s “It.” Read More