FOR SINGLES: WHO LIES IN ONLINE DATING?

Man looking shocked at computerIt’s common knowledge that, when selecting a mate men prefer youth and beauty and women prefer money and height. But did you know that pressure causes most people to outright lie on online dating sites. In fact, 81% of people lie.

And the most common lies? According to researcher, Catalina L. Toma of Michigan State University users mostly lie about their age and their height. In addition, Professor Toma, Jefferey T. Hancock, of Cornell University and Nicole B. Ellison at Michigan State University, interviewed people from New York City who were dating online. All three of the researchers recorded the dating users’ height, weight, and took pictures of their faces, and recorded their age by verifying by their driver’s license. From the information they gathered, they analyzed the group’s dating profiles.

Women were the pretty little liars when it comes to weight. They found women claimed to be, on average, 8.5 pounds thinner than their actual weight. But men lie about weight too, but tend to shave fewer pounds off. They averaged 2 pounds lighter. Not surprisingly, a greater portion of men fibbed about height than women. Most lying men added half an inch to their original height.

So how about age? Is it really true that women lie about age to appear younger and more fertile? Not so. The age factor, according to Toma, was one aspect that dating users of both genders were honest about.

The good news is that it is possible to tell if a person is lying on their dating profile. According to a study printed in the Journal of Communication, people who lie on their profiles tend to use fewer pronouns. In other words, they lie but don’t directly attribute it to “I” and “me.” As well, those who are not telling the truth on their profile have a tendency to use more negative words such as “not” or “never”. They write shorter descriptions about themselves and do not display pessimistic emotions like “sad” and “upset.”

In the online dating world, it is buyer beware. Understand that deception is a proven mating strategy. Accept that the lies exist and do the math for yourself. Add some weight to each woman and subtract some height from each man. That way, you won’t be disappointed when you meet for that first coffee.

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Cited Sources:
http://www.academia.edu/762681/The_truth_about_lying_in_online_dating_profiles

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