Internet dating impact society
The rules of the model were that every node wants to marry a node of the opposite sex (for simplicity’s sake, presumably) but they can only hook up with a node that they’re somehow connected to. The result was a huge flourishing of interracial marriage.“Our model predicts nearly complete racial integration upon the emergence of online dating, even if the number of partners that individuals meet from newly formed ties is small,” say Ortega and Hergovich.But with online dating, these are entirely new bridges connecting us to people we would likely never have any chance of meeting otherwise.To examine the impact of online dating on society as a whole, Ortega and Hergovich looked specifically at racial diversity. Because historically this has been a useful way of measuring social distance.That has interesting knock-on effects about how society functions.Geography is no longer the bar it once was, and the chances of coupling up with a complete stranger is significantly higher too.So that’s what the model predicts, how about the reality?Well first things first, there is research to suggest that people who marry after meeting online are less likely to break up as the model predicts – though causation is nigh on impossible to trace for obvious reasons.
The first is that it’s completely consistent with Ortega and Hergovich’s model.The second is that while you’d expect interracial marriages to become more likely as the US population becomes more diverse, it doesn’t match the rate at which the change is occurring.“The change in the population composition in the U. cannot explain the huge increase in intermarriage that we observe,” the researchers explain.More significantly though, the rise in American interracial marriage does seem to follow Ortega and Hergovich’s model.Rates are still low – in part because it was illegal in some states until 1967 – but a sharp increase seems to follow important milestones in online dating history.