Marriages are made online! Couples who meet online have happier,longer marriages,a new study has claimed.
More than a third of marriages between 2005 and 2012 in US began online and were happier and more enduring,according to new research at the University of Chicago.
Although the study did not determine why relationships that started online were more successful,the reasons may include the strong motivations of online daters,the availability of advance screening and the sheer volume of opportunities online,researchers said.
“These data suggest that the Internet may be altering the dynamics and outcomes of marriage itself,” said the study’s lead author,John Cacioppo,the Tiffany and Margaret Blake Distinguished Service Professor in Psychology at the University of Chicago.
The research found that couples who met online were more likely to have higher marital satisfaction and lower rates of marital breakups than relationships that began in face-to-face meetings.
Marriage breakups were reported in about 6 per cent of the people who met online,compared with 7.6 per cent of the people who met offline.
Marriages for people who met online reported a mean score of 5.64 on a satisfaction survey,compared with a score of 5.48 for people who met offline.
The survey was based on questions about their happiness with their marriage and degree of affection,communication and love for each other.
For the study,Cacioppo led a team that examined the results of a representative sample of 19,131 people who responded to a survey by Harris Interactive about their marriages and satisfaction.
The study found a wide variety of venues,both online and offline,where people met. About 45 per cent met through an online dating site.
People who met online were more likely to be older (30 to 39 is the largest age group represented); employed and had a higher income. The group was diverse racially and ethnically.
Relationships that start online may benefit from selectivity and the focused nature of online dating,the researchers said.
Among the least successful marriages were those in which people met at bars,through blind dates and in online communities that function as virtual worlds,the researchers found.
The study was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.