Facebook Dating – When Will It Be Available, How Will It Work, and Why Will It Change Dating?


In the year after F8 2018, Facebook seems to have made little progress in its attempt to become the internet’s matchmaker. The social media behemoth revealed the next step in its quest to help you find love this week at its annual developer’s conference: the addition of a “Hidden Crush” function. Single users can now build a list of up to nine friends they like-like, and if their crush adds them to their list, the match is announced.

Facebook Dating is now spreading globally. The Philippines, Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia, Laos, Brazil, Peru, Chile, Bolivia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Uruguay, Guyana, and Suriname are among the 14 new countries introduced as part of the update. Colombia, Thailand, Canada, Argentina, and Mexico have all used the service for a year. Although the company hasn’t disclosed how many people are using the feature, Tuesday’s update would mean that it’s gaining traction.

This would come as a surprise to many Facebook users in the United States, who are still wary of entrusting their most sensitive information to the social networking platform. When the feature appeared in their notification feeds, users across Twitter expressed their reservations about it, which is understandable considering Facebook’s track record on privacy.

Although the haters took to social media in droves, they might be in the minority. Facebook’s dating operation may be the dating app to rule them all, due to its network effect, international appeal, and the fact that many of its matches would be at least partly focused on IRL connections — for example, by attending the same case.

Facebook Dating would take a different path than Tinder and Bumble, which rose to popularity alongside the iPhone thanks to their quick and addictive swipe-right/swipe-left mechanics. It also prevents OkCupid’s and many other paid services’ data-driven compatibility-seeking approach. According to some dating experts, these methods are not how most people find love.

Instead, Facebook will encourage users to create a separate dating account where they will be matched based on their shared interests, Facebook Groups, and events. Like Hinge, the first message sender must respond to one of their match’s profile images (something like, “Hey, are you in Rome in that pic?”). I’ve been there.”) or react to one of Facebook’s ice-breaker questions (such as “What is your definition of a perfect day?”).

Facebook has taken care of the two most popular ways for people to interact and form romantic relationships with these built-in features. According to Inverse, this mixture has the ability to make Facebook the online dating service to rule them all, according to William Chopik, a social-personality psychologist and assistant professor at Michigan State University.

“According to polling results, the most popular way people meet is through mutual friends, followed by a social environment, such as a group activity or event,” he said. “On those grounds alone, encouraging the most popular ways for people to communicate appears to be a promising path. As a result of the other applications, Facebook Dating has a significant advantage.”

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Facebook Dating is a hybrid of conventional dating sites such as eHarmony and OkCupid and hook-up apps such as Tinder, Grindr, and Bumble. It connects singles across a large network, matches are rooted in mutual connections and interests, and the events feature can even provide users with a first date idea.

The “shopping” format is used by many of today’s most popular dating apps, in which users swipe through an almost infinite number of singles in their region. This is perfect for increasing app interaction, but it’s not great for finding love: According to a study published in the journal IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication, although online daters enjoy “shopping” for matches from large groups, they have trouble selecting a date. Facebook Dating provides a less unpredictable shopping experience, which could be a solution to the problem.

In a time when a large portion of relationships begins online, Facebook’s more than 2 billion users make the site a huge dating pool. According to Stanford University sociologists Michael Rosenfeld and Sonia Hausen, as well as the University of New Mexico sociologists Reuben Thomas, 39 percent of heterosexual couples who married in 2017 met online.

So, what’s the snag? Dating on Facebook is an easier sell abroad, as shown by the foreign rollout, where people have had less time to get used to using Facebook in particular contexts. According to Maria Avgitidis, founder and CEO of matchmaking service Agape Match, Facebook Dating will make a splash outside of the United States but is unlikely to be well received by Americans.

“Take Greece, for example. All things considered, it has a very limited dating community, and apps like Tinder aren’t as popular,” she explains. “Dating on Facebook has always been a common alternative. My cousin got married after meeting on Facebook. As a consequence, it makes sense for some countries because it is already in operation. However, it will not make sense in every market.”

In the United States, she contrasted dating on Facebook to hitting on people on LinkedIn, a scenario in which the website and the search for a romantic match are inherently misaligned. That may be accurate, given that Facebook has yet to launch its dating service in the United States or Europe. There are also markets where people have become accustomed to thinking of Facebook as a means of keeping in contact with friends and relatives, in addition to Facebook’s privacy record.

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That, on the other hand, could change. In the aftermath of the Cambridge Analytica debacle, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently appeared before the Senate Judiciary and Commerce Committees. The transgressions of Facebook are still fresh in the minds of Americans and Europeans alike, but this may not be the case in the future.

Facebook seems to be well aware of this, as it has made no mention of the US and European release dates. However, if Facebook Dating can replicate this experience in more welcoming markets, they’ll be able to address many of online dating’s weaknesses. If they succeed, bereft Americans and Europeans will easily forget the past.

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