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White Men Play Hard to Get

At least that's what the online dating scene suggests. This wonderful fact is just one of the many fascinating discoveries about dating preferences unearthed at the online dating site OKCupid:

We’ve processed the messaging habits of almost a million people and are about to basically prove that, despite what you might’ve heard from the Obama campaign and organic cereal commercials, racism is alive and well.

Here's a sample of their main findings--the whole item is worth a read:

  • White men get the most responses to their messages.
  • Black women are the most likely to respond to a message.
  • But men of all groups write back to black women the least.
  • White women like white men, but latina and asian women like them even more.
  • White men write back 20% less than other men.

Here's a chart plotting desirability (the percentage of time an ethnicity gets a response) vs. generosity (the percentage of time an ethnicity responds). Blue text means men, pink text means women:

Middle Eastern women are the most desirable (could that have something to do with our wars?), while Middle Eastern men (as I can tell you) are the most generous.

Overall, these results shouldn't be too surprising. And given that a youthful site like OK Cupid probably attracts a more 'forward thinking' crowd, the real-world dynamics are probably even worse.