Participants who anticipated computer-mediated (as opposed to face-to-face) interaction expected that their profile would make a more desirable impression on a potential date.
Tinder presents its users with pictures of people geographically nearby, whom they can either like or dislike based on first impressions.
If two users like each other, they are allowed to initiate a conversation via the chat feature.
In this paper we use a set of curated profiles to explore the behaviour of men and women in Tinder.
This study examines the role of online daters’ physical attractiveness in their profile self-presentation and, in particular, their use of deception.
Sixty-nine online daters identified the deceptions in their online dating profiles and had their photograph taken in the lab.
Independent judges rated the online daters’ physical attractiveness.
Results show that the lower online daters’ attractiveness, the more likely they were to enhance their profile photographs and lie about their physical descriptors (height, weight, age).
The association between attractiveness and deception did not extend to profile elements unrelated to their physical appearance (e.g., income, occupation), suggesting that their deceptions were limited and strategic.
Results are discussed in terms of (a) evolutionary theories about the importance of physical attractiveness in the dating realm and (b) the technological affordances that allow online daters to engage in selective self-presentation.
ABSTRACT: Online daters may be aware that online chat can extend their opportunities for making a desirable impression on potential dates in comparison to meeting a potential partner face-to-face.
This anticipation of a subsequent interaction may already impact the impression individuals expect to make through an online profile initially, which in turn can impact self-esteem. Ninety-two heterosexual women constructed a dating profile while anticipating that they would meet a date either face-to-face or through text-based chat.