Matchmaking is, in some cultures, a tradition as old as the world, sometimes seen as a ritual or sacred duty. More modern version of matchmaking appeared especially in large cities, where, although many people live in proximity to one another, meeting suitable partners seems to be impossible. Services such as speed dating, video dating or phone dating grew in popularity in the 1980s and were usually provided by specialized dating agencies. The advent of computer technologies has seen the development of what we call today online dating, a phenomenon which took off in the early 2000s.
According to a 2015 study, the vast majority of American respondents who have used online dating services, such as such as dating websites or apps, have done so because it is a good way to meet other people and because it allows them to find a better match. On the other hand, respondents that have not used any online dating services were more inclined to believe that it is more dangerous than other ways of meeting and that people who use such services are desperate. As of July 2015, some 12 percent of adults in the United States have dated on the internet, with men accounting for slightly more accounts than women. Research also shows that 15 percent of American adults with some college experience had used online dating sites, more than adults with a high school diploma or less, while Americans with higher incomes tend to use online dating more than those with lower incomes.
As of June 2015, the website Match.com number of users has reached 35 million, which cemented the website’s position as the leader of the online dating market in the United States. Other strong players on the market such as Tinder, PlentyOfFish and OkCupid are also part of the Match Group, Match.com’s parent company. The number of Match Group paying users is constantly on the rise, having reached 2.6 million in the third quarter of 2015 in the United States alone. In 2015, the company has surpassed 900 million U.S. dollars in dating revenues.