More on Dating in a Digital World from SIA 3

Facebook has become an integral part of the dating process– pre-date, while in a relationship, and sometimes even as a cause for a break up. Check out our data below on how social media plays a role in singles’ lives.

Women do their social homework before a date, men don’t approve: 48% of single women research a date on Facebook before the first date (vs. 38% of men), although nearly half of single men (49%) think researching someone prior to a first date is unacceptable.

  • More than 1/3 of singles in their 20s (37%) and 30s (35%) would check out someone’s Facebook profile before a first date.
  • 10% of singles would find the person they were dating more attractive if they found out they did not have a Facebook account.
  • 5% of singles would be wary/suspicious if the person they were dating did not have a Facebook account.

Boys beware: Your digital image can hurt your chances. 49% of women (and 27% of men) would cancel their first date because of something they found while researching a date online.

Putting your best face[BOOK] forward. Across all age groups, 27% of single men and 26% of single women have or would clean up their Facebook wall before accepting a friend request from a potential suitor. Singles in their 20s (36%) particularly likely to keep their Facebook wall in order.

Who’s on Facebook? Almost 3/4 of singles are on Facebook, but only 7% used social networking sites like Facebook to find their most recent first date.

Getting Friendly: Women are much pickier about whom they friend on Facebook than men: 64% of women would choose to not friend someone because of their relationship to them

  • Singles are most likely to NEVER Facebook friend their boss (40%) than their ex (32%)
    • More women than men would NOT friend their boss (46% women and 35% of men)
    • 46% of singles in their 20s would never friend their bosses on Facebook
  • Single men are more likely to not friend their parents and other relatives than women (29% of single men vs. 21% of single women)

Protecting Your Online Privacy: 25% of single women use privacy settings on their Facebook accounts to limit either posts, pictures, or both for the people they’re dating

  • Almost 1/3 of singles in their 20s and 27% of singles in their 30s use their privacy settings to limit what someone they are dating can see on their Facebook.
  • Over 1/3 of singles (35%) worry that Facebook could hurt their career.
  • Nearly 2/3 of singles (65%) say they do NOT post their relationship status on Facebook.

Facebook Breakups: 16% of singles in their 20s have stopped dating someone because of something spotted on that person’s Facebook page.

Facebook Deal Breakers by Gender: Of those who have broken up with their significant others due to Facebook, these were the top causes:


  1. Date’s pictures (55%)
  2. A wall post on another person’s wall (42%)
  3. Date’s status updates (21%)


  1. A wall post on another person’s wall (48%)
  2. Date’s pictures (36%)
  3. Who their date was adding as friends (27%)

Of singles who post their relationship status on Facebook, 45% change it immediately after a breakup

  • While 12% of singles said they use Facebook to keep tabs on an ex, singles in their 20s were nearly 2X more likely (23%) to do this than average (12.2%)

Do singles with gadgets have more sex? Go on more dates?

Singles with iPads & smartphones have more sex— 28% of iPad owners & 27% of smartphone owners had sex at least 1x/week vs. 24% of E-Reader owners and 17% of traditional cell phone owners

They also have more orgasms— 43% of iPad owners and 42% of smartphone owners reach orgasm 91-100% of the time vs. 36% of E-reader owners and 38% of traditional cell phone owners

iPad owners have more one-night stands than any other electronics owner— 45% of tablet owners had 1 or more one-night stands in 2012 vs. 42% of smartphone owners, 29% of E-Reader owners, and 24% of traditional cell phone owners.

Do singles who use social media have more sex? Go on more dates?

Singles with Tumblrs, YouTube accounts, and Instant messenger accounts are more likely to have sex on the first date (8%) than people with Facebook (6%), Twitter (7%), a blog (7%), or Skype (7%).

Singles with a blog are most likely to wait until marriage before having sex— 15% of singles with blogs would wait

Singles on Google+ are most likely to initiate sex with a partner (6% answered “almost all the time”)

You might also like:

“Friends with Benefits” and One-Night Stands

Privacy in Love

Sexting & Texting

Myths About Marriage

Additional Key Findings