Sewing affects people’s perceptions of dates suggested by online dating apps

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa .– Users of online dating apps rate the suitability of recommended partners based on the personalization process the app uses, according to new research from Penn State. The team’s results suggest that it is important for the app to use an algorithm to suggest potential mates or use date preferences given by users.

“The popularity of online dating has increased in recent years,” said S. Shyam Sundar, Professor James P. Jimirro of Media Effects, Penn State, with 30% of American adults reporting they have used online dating services since. 2019, according to the latest US survey conducted by the Pew Research Center. “Technology has made the matchmaking process very efficient, thus contributing to the popularity of online dating sites. “

Still, Sundar noted that, so far, little has been known about how users perceive date recommendations based on how the app is personalized – that is, personalization, in which users directly give their feedback. notices regarding their partners ‘preferences for obtaining appropriate app recommendations, or personalization, wherein the app makes algorithm-based recommendations on behalf of users based on users’ personal information.

To study these perceptions, the researchers recruited 184 participants from Amazon Mechanical Turk. They randomly assigned each participant to one of four experimental groups – personalization, personalization, both personalization and personalization, and control.

In the personalization group, participants provided information on what they are looking for in their romantic partners. In the personalization group, participants provided information about their own qualities to get their personalized matches suggested by the app. For the combined group, all the questions included in the personalization and personalization conditions were used. In the control condition, none of the above questions were asked except the basic questions, such as gender and sexual orientation.

Regardless of which group they were assigned to, all participants were exposed to identical screenshots of a mobile dating app simulation featuring the same eight suggested dates. The only difference was whether the suggested dates were all male or all female, depending on the sexual preferences of the individual participants.

The researchers found that although participants tended to identify a higher proportion of date-worthy partners in the personalization and personalization groups compared to the control group, it was the combination of the two strategies that resulted in the greatest number of worthy appointments. This was especially true for participants who had more experience with online dating services. Those who did not have such an experience found more dates worthy of going out if they were committed to customizing their preferences.

“Users may feel a greater sense of control when providing information about their partner’s preferences,” said senior author Eugene Cho, assistant professor of communication studies, The College of New Jersey. “But they can also feel a sense of trust in the date recommendations generated by the app. Providing users with various filtering options and encouraging them to provide more personal information to the system can improve the perceived quality of search results.

The team also found that inexperienced users – those who lack the soft skills and motivation to use new technology – rated the expected personalities of the suggested dates as more appealing in the absence of adaptation of any kind, while that distinguishing between different information tailored policies made no difference in advanced user ratings of the suggested dates.

“One explanation for the negative ratings of their ‘tailored’ matches by the dating app seen among inexperienced users may be their reluctance to share such personal information online,” Cho said. “If so, finding ways to better report security in terms of handling personal information could alleviate privacy concerns for inexperienced users. “

Overall, the study shows how different information coping behaviors could lead to different user perceptions of suggested dates in a dating app.

“It seems the more information you provide to the system, the more worthy people you will perceive to hang out with,” Sundar said. “To increase user confidence in finding more potential matches, application planners might consider asking users as much information as possible about themselves and their preferred partners. “

The findings, published Oct. 1 in the journal Computers in Human Behavior, could inform the planning and design of more user-friendly online dating apps, the researchers say.


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