Online Dating in America More Popular and Losing Stigma, says PEW Report

Pew Internet

Online dating is becoming a more popular and socially acceptable way of meeting a partner, a Pew study has revealed.

Pew Research Center found one in ten Americans had used online or mobile dating, up from 3% in 2008.  

Of those described as “single and looking”, 38% said they had gone online looking for love.

Pew did a similar study in 2005, and this year’s report shows that attitudes are more positive towards online dating, and it seems to be losing its stigma.


They found that 59% of Americans think online dating is a good way to meet people, up from 44% in 2005.

And those who thought “people who use online dating sites are desperate” dropped from 29% in 2005 to 21%. 

Americans also know more people who have used online dating, 42%, and 29% said they knew someone who used it to find a spouse or longterm partner.

This figure was up from 15% in 2005.

However, a large 54% of online daters felt someone had “seriously misrepresented themselves”, and 28% had felt harassed or uncomfortable by contact.


Here are some other findings of the report:

  • 22% of 25-34 year olds are online daters, compared to 17% of 35-44 year olds.
  • 7% of cell phone users (3% of all adults) say have used a dating app on their mobile device.
  • 40% of online daters have used sites designed for people with shared interests or backgrounds.
  • 33% have paid to use a dating site.
  • was the most popular site, with eHarmony coming in second.
  • 5% of Americans who are currently married or in long term relationships met their partner somewhere online.
  • Of those who’ve been together for 10 years or less, 11% met online.
  • 60% of Americans use social networking sites like Facebook or Twitter.

The survey was based on a sample of 2,252 Americans over the age of 18.

To read the full report, go here.