Where Are All The Online Daters?

Here’s an interesting disconnect: The number of people using online dating is down, according to some new research — but revenues from online dating services are actually up.

The data, released today by eMarketer, finds only 5 percent of U.S. Internet users say they visited online dating sites in 2008, compared to 10 percent just four years earlier. At the same time, though, estimates put the Internet dating industry at revenues of $1.65 billion in 2012 — a significant and steady growth from past years.

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eMarketer suggests the reason might be more effective pricing and niche-targeting by online dating services. And that could very well be a part of it. I might offer one other possible (and far simpler) explanation, though: People don’t want to admit they’re using Internet dating services.

Good old-fashioned lying. It explains a lot.