story art

Bruch finds online daters contact prospects more desirable than themselves

a PSC In The News reference

"Online dating study quantifies what’s ‘out of your league’" - Washington Post. 08/08/2018.

In an analysis of online dating site data from four large US cities, ISR's Elizabeth Bruch and U-M complex systems professor Mark Newman used a ranking algorithm to rate users' desirability (attractiveness as a mate) and then examined how initiated contacts reflected these ratings. They found that both men and women pursue partners who are on average about 25% more desirable than themselves and that they use different messaging strategies with partners of different desirability. Bruch says that although many contacts up the hierarchy remain unanswered, "21% of people who engage in this aspirational behavior do get replies from a mate who is out of their league, so perseverance pays off.”

Paper in Science Advances


Elizabeth Eve Bruch

More Media Coverage:

Inverse. Science Finally Proves True a Common Theory About Online Dating. 8/8/2018.

BBC. Online dating: Aim high, keep it brief, and be patient. 8/8/2018.

Michigan News. Out of your league? Most online daters seek more desirable mates despite long odds. 8/8/2018.

CNN. Online dating study: Are you chasing people 'out of your league'?. 8/8/2018.

The Times (UK). Science of the silver fox: how men are most attractive at 50. 8/8/2018.

The Guardian. Out of your league? Study shows online daters message more desirable people. 8/8/2018.

USA Today. Online dating study defines which people are 'out of your league'. 8/9/2018.

Futurity. Online daters seek someone out of their league. 8/9/2018.

Market Watch. Single people treat online dating like fantasy football—they keep trying to date out of their league. 8/12/2018.

Science Trends. Study Of Aspirational Pursuits In Dating Defines What “Out Of Your League” Means. 8/13/2018.

New York Post. Science reveals the online dating techniques that actually work. 8/14/2018.

View News Archive


Connect with PSC follow PSC on Twitter Like PSC on Facebook