Online Dating: An Economist's Perspective

Suddenly economics just got interesting to me. Well, behavioral economics that is. Check out this video from super-smart economist, Dan Ariely, who talks about online dating as a necessary but failing market. Dan, you couldn't be more right as per 99% of my dates, which are major FAILS.

Dan points out that online dating sites filter our matches by height, race, age, body type, location, etc, putting us into little boxes. However this is a totally inefficient way of trying to find who we might be compatible with.

Here's Why:

1. Think about 5 people you like and 5 people you don't like.

2. Imagine you have 10 cards and on each card is written the attributes of these people such as - age, weight, height, race, etc, but no names...and they are all mixed up.

3. Now try to pick out the 5 cards that describe the people you like.

Can't do it? Impossible? Yeah of course it is. 

I dislike a good amount of people on this planet (many of whom exist during my morning commute), but I can say with confidence that they are all varying sizes, ages, weights, races, and heights.

So how the hell can online dating actually work? (I ask myself this everyday).

He says the key to compatibility or rather the key to securing a second date is to understand how the other person experiences things in life. If you experience them the same way you might be good together. 

But seriously don't listen to me, I'm useless. Just watch the video.