Ok Cupid’s algorithm calculates match percentage by comparing answers to “match questions,” which cover such potentially deal-breaking topics as religion, politics, lifestyle, and—I mean, let’s be honest, most importantly—sex.
For each question—say, “Do you like the taste of beer?
” " data-medium-file="https://daily.jstor.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/OKCupid_1050x700-300x200.jpg" data-large-file="https://daily.jstor.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/OKCupid_1050x700-1024x683.jpg" /“Can you bring me something citrusy, bourbon-based? He pauses to consider—one eyebrow askew—then deftly recites three cocktail options that, one has to assume, will meet her specifications.
In fact, his research suggests, when it comes to matchmaking, match percentage is, well, irrelevant.
“Ok Cupid prides itself on its algorithm,” he told me over the phone, “but the site basically has no clue whether a higher match percentage actually correlates with relationship success.” And ultimately, Lewis suggested, there’s a fairly simple reason for this.
” or “Would you rather be tied up during sex or do the tying?
”—you input both your answer and the answers you’ll accept from a potential love interest.
“[T]hese sites,” the authors continue, “are in a poor position to know how the two partners will grow and mature over time, what life circumstances they will confront and coping responses they will exhibit in the future, and how the dynamics of their interaction will ultimately promote or undermine romantic attraction and long-term relationship well-being.” When you finally get that note-perfect message from a total cutie—who, OMG, is This tendency of ours to think that superficially alike should mean romantically compatible, Lewis notes, plays out in another predictably disappointing way: Ok Cupid users stick almost exclusively to people of their own race.
“Race, as other studies have indicated, is the biggest divisive factor in romantic markets and romantic pairings in the United States,” he said.“My big finding is that people are more likely to be open to interracial interaction when the other person makes the first move,” he said.“In addition, a person of another race contacting me makes me more likely to contact someone from another race.Nota bene, however, that Ok Cupid, Tinder, and are all owned by Match Group, Inc., which—across all three platforms—boasts 59 million active users per month, 4.7 million of whom have paid accounts.Match Group’s only real competitor is e Harmony, a site aimed at older daters, reviled by many for its founder’s homophobic politics.Speaking with Lewis that gray October morning was, at least, somewhat comforting in its bleakness.