Monday, February 13, 2006

Romance In 2006...Do the trends still hold up?

Pew Research Center released a study showing that 49% of young Americans (18-29)are "not-actively" seeking partners or relationships. Sounds like a lot of independent kids out there. I'm 26 and I can say that I am very happily involved right now with not only a wonderful person, but our wonderful terror of a dog, Ava Grey. Here is a little bit more from the study:

These findings emerge from a national survey conducted last fall by the Pew Internet & American Life Project looking at the place of online dating in the larger picture of relationships in America. The survey found that dating in America is, indeed, affected by online matchmaking activity.

Among internet users, how the married and the committed met each other.

In our sample of internet users, we found that those who are in serious long-term relationships or marriage are equally as likely to have met through friends or in a work or school setting. Still, bars remain a relatively popular place for long-term relationships to begin. Here is a rundown from the survey of how the internet users in marriages or long-term relationships first encountered each other.

* 38% met at work or school.
* 34% met through family or friends.
* 13% met at a nightclub, bar, café, or other social gathering
* 3% met through the internet.
* 2% met at church.
* 1% met by chance, such as on the street.
* 1% met because they lived in the same neighborhood.
* 1% met at a recreational facility like a gym.
* 1% met on a blind date or through a dating service.
* The remainder cited a variety of other ways they met, such as growing up together.

While the survey provides no direct evidence that the internet can take credit for the higher rates of wedlock among its users, it does show that internet date-seeking has become increasingly popular.

I'm going to go out on a limb here and offer this up as my own 26 year old insight into this data. So 3% met online, 34% met through friends/family and 38% met at school/work. Hmm...sounds like good arenas for the Myspace,, Friendster, Flickr crowds. The wonders of online dating. So potentially 75% of these people could meet online at some point in time because aren't we all conneceted thorough someone else online? Marketers, make note of this trend to social networking, and beware the WEB 3.0, it's coming. Tailor your thought patterns to our needs, it's about what we need as consumers, move us with targeted messaging and capture our attention with ideas that beg to be heard.

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