And you look at women’s attractiveness, it goes really up at low BMI and really drops below that. They look at hair color and they look at height and they look at income, and that’s basically it... And you can ask, is it because that’s all people care about or is that because that’s what the system is giving them to search for. Sure, we are superficial, we do care about attractiveness and height and income and these are features for us, but I think they’re exaggerated by the way the system is created.Imagine you were looking for something else, imagine you were looking for digital cameras, and imagine that I only allow you to search on megapixels and f-stop for the lens, right?
Question: What's wrong with the experience of online dating?Dan Ariely: I think that online dating is an incredibly unsatisfying experience.And this breaking into attributes turns out not to be very informative.So on the last stage of this process, we created a different Web site.And you could see lots of stuff, there were pictures and images and there were words and there movies and there were bands, there was all kinds of stuff, and you could go and when you came to another little avatar, you could start chatting.
And you would chat about something, it wasn’t about interviewing when you went to school and what’s your religion; it was about talking about something else and it turns out it gave people much more information about each other, and they were much more likely to want to meet each other for a first date and for a second date.
" And I took people that I liked more and I liked less, and I took their profile and I tried to figure out could I tell the difference? Imagine you went to 50 people you really like and 50 people you only like so-so, and you asked all of them to fill this profile, then you took this 100 profiles and you tried to sort them out into piles. And then went a step further, did some studies with online daters about how much they enjoyed it and what they were getting from it, until the final stage, we, I figured out, I thought I knew what was going on, which is that online dating sites assume that people are easy to describe on searchable attributes.
They think that we’re like digital cameras, that you can describe somebody by their height and weight and political affiliation and so on. That when you taste the wine, you could describe it, but it’s not a very useful description. And it’s the complexity and the completeness of the experience that tells you if you like a person or not.
So I think part of the problem is that the systems don’t give us the right information that we need.
And because of this, I think the experience of online dating is generally unsatisfying.
These things would become incredibly important, right?