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Plus, many big sites have been hesitant to allow independent researchers to look at their matching algorithms in depth. Of the 13 online daters I talked to for this article, only one believes algorithms can make successful matches. “I don’t believe that an algorithm can match me up, and I don’t want to match me up,” said Jason Feifer.A senior editor at Fast Company, Feifer met his wife Jennifer Miller, a freelance journalist and author, through Ok Cupid after narrowing his search criteria to two requirements: “Jewish” and “journalist.”Feifer and Miller told me they didn’t start using Ok Cupid with the hopes of finding their soulmates.With some goading from a friend — who somehow convinced me that the stigma against online dating was no more — I joined Ok Cupid and started scanning the thousands of matches that popped up on my screen.Apparently, I wasn’t alone in my Valentine’s Day depression-induced hunt for Prince Charming.Between 20, the number of people using online dating sites doubled, from 20 million to 40 million, and about one third of America’s single people participated in some sort of online dating last year.But despite these numbers, it’s unclear if online dating is any more effective than, or really any different from, meeting someone offline.A dating site is not a magic “fix” for your dating problems.
With the number of visitors these sites get each month, that increase is pretty significant: Some current estimates report between 10.5 and 23.8 million unique visitors per month for two major dating sites.In many ways, online dating resembles offline dating — the resulting relationships are no different. So why do so many millions turn to the Web to find love?While many dating sites claim the ability to find your perfect match, social scientists aren’t buying it.After a rough breakup last January, I was sad and single in the Big Apple.Valentine’s Day was approaching, and this city of more than eight million people was feeling oddly lonely.