How Races and Religions Match in Online Dating

September 29th, 2009 by Christian Rudder

This week, we’re going to take a step back from examining messages to your matches and take a look at matching itself. We’ll slice OkCupid’s data on compatibility by religion, race, and other factors, and by the end we’ll have some unsettling conclusions on how people match and interact online. But first, I want to explain something important.

What Does It Mean To “Match” Someone?

All OkCupid users create their own matching algorithms, so when we determine who matches who, we’re just crunching the numbers people give us.
A match percentage between two people is an expression of how well they might get along.
A match percentage between two people is a condensed, yet statistically valid, expression of how well they might get along. 75% is very high, 45% is very low, and 60.2% is the site-wide average. If, for example, a couple match each other 71%, it means they are likely to like each other, based on their own individual definitions of what makes a person cool, sexy, and attractive, not ours. I point this out now so that, below, when we claim that Jewish women are easier to get along with than Christians, you don’t blame us, you blame Jesus.

We discuss matching more at the end of this post, if you’re interested or nerdy. Now let’s move on.

The Zodiac and Other Beliefs

Since he’s a Pisces and I’m a Virgo, Chris and I of course think the Zodiac is total bullshit, and it was very gratifying to have the data bear this out. Here are the grouped match percentages for a random pool of 500,000 users. Astrological sign has no effect whatsoever on how compatible two people are.

We’re showing you this table, as dull as it is, because the uniformity neatly illustrates how beefy our data set is. There are 144 pools considered above, and they all match the mean plus or minus 0.5%. Our next table again aggregates the preferences of those 500,000 random users, but it shows stronger feelings. Red indicates mutual dislike and green, mutual like. For brevity, and because that’s where we have by far the most data, all the tables on this page display data for straight men and women only.

The numbers on the perimeter of the table are the weighted average match percentage, a measure of group likability, for each column or row. Here’s what we see:

  • Jews and Agnostics get along better with people. Jewish men, in particular, have an above average match percentage with every religious group. They even match Muslim women better than Muslim men do, which I find both a hilarious irony and a somewhat sad reflection on the fact that Muslim males don’t seem to be doing very well. The data also cast an interesting light on the Jewish people’s history as a persecuted people: the underlying facts indicate an intrinsic mainstream likability, yet Jews have not been, and in some places still aren’t, “liked.” We’ll investigate a similar dichotomy in the second half of this post when we look at matching by race.
  • Muslims of both sexes and Hindu men get along worse. Now is a good time to stress that just because a group has low match percentages, even across the board, that does not mean they are bad people. It just means that they’re harder to please. The converse is also true: the above chart is not evidence that Jews or Agnostics are better than the rest of us. Just better liked. In any event, please keep in mind that each individual has designed his own matching criteria, so the poor-matching groups aren’t failing some outsider’s imposed system. Why, for example, Hindu men would match worst with Hindu women is a mystery.
  • Catholics are more universally liked than Protestants. While neither Christian group has many extremes of like/dislike, Protestant Christians only truly match well with other Christians. Catholics have above average match percentages with Hindus, Jews, and even Agnostics. Looks like Vatican II is working, guys!

Get Serious, Or Don’t

When we change our question from “What do you believe?” to “How strong do you believe it?” we get a much more orderly color pattern, and we also unlock some of the mysteries of the previous table. Below we plot people by their attitude about religion, as selected on their profile page.

As it turns out, people who hold their beliefs lightly are much better liked, even by people who are themselves serious. Weird huh? While it’s true that the most serious women believers slightly prefer their men to not be “laughing about it”, every other slice of this data indicates that the less serious (or more flexible?) you are about your religious beliefs, the better you get along.
The less serious you are about religion, the better liked you are, even by very religious people.
Please note that when I say “religious beliefs,” I’m talking about the full spectrum of beliefs, from Atheism to Orthodoxy, so don’t take this as anti-god; I also realize that “getting along” is hardly the purpose behind most people’s theological attitudes. Nonetheless, I think it’s interesting that even a man who’s “very serious” about his religion and has presumably designed his matching algorithm around this fact is still more compatible with the women who are laughing about it.

This information goes some way in explaining our first religion table: in our data pool, Muslims and Protestants tend to be more intense about their beliefs than the others, and Jews and Agnostics are by far the least serious. Here’s the first chart, replotted to include overall seriousness in blue.

Race

Ah, race. If religion is a minefield, then race is a field that’s just one giant mine. But luckily, our match-by-race table isn’t nearly as, well, colorful as the religion ones.

As you can see, there are slight matching biases here, but nothing too dramatic. It’s not going to make many people excited to hear that, for example, white people tend to be better liked, (or, if you want to think reciprocally, do more liking) than the other races, or that black and Indian men are less liked/liking, but, still, those differences are small compared to what we saw with religion. In addition, it’s entirely possible that most of the discrepancies might be just reflect different religious attitudes across the races.

More than anything this table shows the overall compatibility of all races—indicating that in a perfect world, yes, we could all just get along. Yet we don’t. And, in this way, it marks the perfect transition point in our discussion. In the real world people largely choose who to get along with, and even who to get to know.As I said in the beginning of this post, match percentage is an excellent predictor of how well two people might get along; however, in the real world people largely choose who to get along with, and even who to get to know. In online dating, we can measure this choice by looking at how often people reply to actual messages from people of the various races, and then contrast that rate with the underlying compatibilities. And that’s exactly what we’ll do in the second half of this post, which will be up next week. Look once more at the match-by-race chart above and then look at the reply-rate-by-race table below.

It’s a glimpse at the jagged terrain where we’ll be going:


Addendum, If You’re Interested: “Match Percentage”

We all know what it feels like to meet someone you really like, but, unfortunately, feelings are something web servers have trouble with. Therefore, our first goal with OkCupid was to quantify this elusive idea of “compatibility” so we could accurately suggest users to each other.

It’s not as simple as saying, Mary really likes hockey and Bob really likes hockey

It’s not as simple as saying, Mary really likes hockey and Bob really likes hockey, therefore they are a good match—which is how many dating sites work. What if instead Mary really likes being dominated during sex? If Bob also needs to be dominated, and good sex is important to them, Bob and Mary are terrible matches. In bed, at least, they both want their opposites.

This, and other thought experiments, eventually led us to a definition of compatibility that’s user-defined. After all:

  • You’re great in all kinds of ways we don’t understand.
  • You have specific needs we can’t possibly categorize.
  • You don’t want our advice, you want to meet people you’ll like.

In short, our method is this: we host an ever-changing database of user-submitted questions, covering every imaginable topic, from spirituality to dental hygiene. To build their own match algorithms, our users answer as many questions as they please (the average is about 230). When answering a question, a user also picks her how her ideal match would answer and how important the question is to her. It’s very simple, and it removes all subjectivity on our part. We simply crunch the numbers.

OkCupid is no more responsible for people’s match percentages than Microsoft Excel is responsible for their net worth.

So, for example, if two people match each other 69%, what it means is that they are very likely to like each other, based on their own definitions of what makes a person attractive, not ours. OkCupid is no more responsible for people’s match percentages than Microsoft Excel is responsible for their net worth. Again, our users write the match questions, choose which ones to answer, and determine how important each answer is. We just do the math. A very detailed explanation of exactly what math we do is in our FAAAQ.

157 Responses to “How Races and Religions Match in Online Dating”

  1. Ocymvio says:

    When is okcupid going to add Pagan to the list of religions? Pagan is a generic term for Wiccan, Druid, Asatru, Thelemic and many others. Using “other” or “Agnostic” are not acceptable categories for these religions.

  2. TM says:

    Heh, interesting. Apparently, as a white, agnostic male who is laughing about his beliefs, I’m either very desirable or am not affected by a potential match’s race. Well done, me.

  3. wutzalldisden says:

    yes this is true but how can you say that christians are better than muslims i mean have you studied the quran or gone to a madrassa even once???

  4. Kutaly says:

    This post, along with the last one, seem to clarify the reason for why God is single.

  5. ognib512 says:

    Very nice to see the astrological results. Given the size of your dataset, I presume that the anomalous score of 59 for aquarian-aquarian matches is significant… and I wonder why.

    Are there any possible explanations? Are aquarians more or less aware of the supposed characteristics of their sign than others, perhaps due to some belief in the exceptionality of the sign in Zodiac (from the ‘age of aquarius’ or other ideas)? Are aquarians somehow vastly rarer because of their birth period? Are they exceptional (gulp) because of the motion of the celestial bodies? Or because (equally gulp) the sign is no longer aligned with the constellation? Any ideas?

  6. DonEscamillo says:

    OKcupid, I have to lift my hat to you, this is a marvellous study, deep and rich in teachings. Excellent website, excellent blog. A fan.

  7. MKX246 says:

    I thought this was really cool, but I think the religion scale should be fuller. As a protestant I wasn’t insulted that I wasn’t universally adored, but “protestant” is kind of a vague term. It encompasses any non-catholic denomination…including mormons and Jehova’s witnesses. I don’t really know much about the other religions, but I’m assuming there are different denominations/sects that can be lumped into them as well. I guess i’m saying that it looked better when there were specifics. Atheism, agnosticism, catholicism were pretty specific. I wanted to add judaism, but i’m aware of an orthodox sect and an unorthodox sect, so there might be variations in there too for all I know.

    Even when looking at other profiles, i prefer to see “catholic” or “atheist” as opposed to “protestant”. Quite frankly mormons and I DON’T get along, so seeing “protestant” on a profile (like mine) is kind of a turn off. A small one, but notable.

  8. DrOliver says:

    The problem with “Protestant” is that it’s such an extremely wide spectrum, from liberate and moderate protestants to evangelicals. There’s a difference if you’re an off the mill Lutheran or belong to a splinter group which believes that the Pope AND the leader of every other Christian confession are ALL the Antichrist… There’s different getting along with the different types of Protestants I’m sure.

  9. AL says:

    It’s also interesting to note that atheists get along very well!

  10. ablondecouple says:

    Response rate based on height would be interesting, especially to 6’3″ me. But I think most interesting would be to see the numbers crunched for height difference. Tall women like tall guys.

    I wonder if there is a way to compare profile length with response rates. Or number of questions answered.

    OOooooooh, how about this: Dating Persona results vs response rates! The dating persona test has recommended matches and anti-matches–how do the stats bear those out?

  11. last_einheri says:

    has anyone else noticed that the highest compatibility rates for ANY mixture of race or creed are atheists and agnostics, with jews a close second / third? just saying. atheists FTW. and jewish girls are hot too.

  12. jacquieburbank says:

    I second the request for a height match/reply chart! I’m positive tall girls are getting shafted and short men, too.

  13. wbknox says:

    Unfortunately for some of these results, there is a way to game your match percentage, and I’m suspicious that agnostics, atheists, and jews — the most liberal groups, on average — are unwittingly doing it.

    Though I haven’t looked in a while, the match percentage calculation is based on whether User A’s answers were chosen as acceptable answers by User B, and vice-versa. So, to have higher match percentages across the board, someone can simply choose, for each question, all but one (or sometimes two) acceptable answers. In other words, the more accepting someone is of others’ answers (and by extension their beliefs), the higher their match percentage is. Sounds like a liberal, no?

  14. Derek says:

    @wbknox

    I wouldn’t call it “gaming your match percentage” as simply being tolerant. If a person actually gets along with more people, due to not being picky about beliefs others have, they should have a higher match percentage with other people. It is perfectly legitimate, just not complimentary to the conservative types.

  15. whorestar says:

    many people say “it’s good that you feel strongly about your beliefs”. but what they’re really saying is “you’re a religious fanatic and your vigilance frightens me”. the data reflects this.

  16. whorestar says:

    it would be astronomically hilarious for me to run the data and tailor my profile to all the things that these data-crunching blogs suggest. i could break the whole system and say i’m a laughing-about-it agnostic vegan zombie that has tattoos and plays in a metal band. the replies would come in the hundreds.

  17. Rich says:

    I am a white male and I’m attracted to white females; sometimes asians and hispanics. And all I can say is: thank goodness for this article! Little did I know I’m full-on **racist** because I am typically not attracted to black women! In order to help fight against racism in the world today, I hereby commit to chase women I am simply not attracted to!

    (P.S. I’ll keep it my little secret that I’m extremely attracted to brunettes with brown eyes. Ohhhhhhhh how I hate those detestable blonde-haired blue-eyed people! How dare they not attract me!?)

  18. Dave M. says:

    You guys say 60.2% is the site-wide average match percentage. It’d be nice to see a bell curve/normal distribution of all matches that shows how few people get match rates of 70, 75, 80, 85, 90%, etc. …

  19. drew says:

    first, let me say how impressed I am with this analysis. I happened to a see a link to your blog through facebook, and couldn’t stop reading the analysis. fascinating stuff! It’s amazing to see hard data like this behind social practices. keep it up!

    second, i wonder if your product creates some bias in outcomes. as a member, i see the match percentage in responses. would it be possible to run an experiment where you didn’t show the match percentage? telling me that I’m likely to be a good match surely affects whether I think I’m a good match and respond. It would be very cool to see if the results held true even when you didn’t display your calculation.

  20. Nathan says:

    would love to see pagan on the list as well

  21. Kei says:

    George-great to hear your comments! Very interesting.

    SeanLouis- Good luck to you! I’m dating a short white (Jewish) boy agnostic (close, but no cigar, I know.)

    As a Black female OKC user, I have a small theory as to why Black women test with the highest rate of response. I’ve noticed that many personals ads, especially the always entertaining Missed Connections section, are from men seeking White, namely blonde and Asian women. I’m also approached the least often in mixed company while my White and Asian friends would have to practically beat the men off with a bat (We’re all rather nice looking in our own right, if I say so myself. Hehe.).

    Given that anecdotal evidence, the data here shows the lowest response rates from White and Asian women, and the highest for Black women. Could it be that the rates are reflective of a relative proportion of received messages vs. responses to said messages? If a certain OKC user rarely receives messages, perhaps s/he might be more willing to respond to the few that come his/her way. Further, if the majority of men in the groups I’ve mentioned (Craigslist, the indie dance clubs I frequent, OKC) are white, perhaps that affects things, too.

    That being said, I’ll now retire from analyzing based on race-rough, prickly ground indeed. I’m glad to see that for the most part, people across all ethnicities are relatively compatible, hooray!

  22. kei says:

    Hi, Rich-

    I don’t think anyone would call you “racist” nor has anyone singled out anyone else here as “racist” for professing to be not be attracted to a certain type of people. In fact, a few comments up someone did mention being attracted to members of a race they did not belong to. Rich, if you had written a more neutral comment it’d just sound like you have a racial bias. We *all* have biases of all kinds-height, weight, skin color and tone, etc. But your comment severely weakens your argument because it was so sarcastic and defensive.

  23. Andrew S says:

    Birth month, and therefore zodiac sign, does have a correlation to some professions:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2006/05/07/magazine/07wwln_freak.html?_r=1&pagewanted=all

  24. katie says:

    Whoa Whoa wait. How can you actually claim that these %’s can be accurate. Who is claiming that what a successful ‘match’ is? OKCupid? If OKCupid arranged the next 500,000 marriages I think a vast majority of them would not work out. A computer cannot generate or estimate feelings of love one person will have for another. Love and successful relationships require a little more than some motherboard crunching numbers based on what boxes some person filled out (that they may not have been honest to begin with while filling out that survey). So not only is their information not 100% reliable, but lets be honest here: Life isn’t 100% for certain anyway. The last time you were in a relationship, did your friend tell you that you only had a 47% chance of making it because you were Muslim and your partner was atheist? No. It’s all about mental attitude, where you are in your life, initial attraction and compatibility that you cant tell a computer in a survey. I wouldnt take anything in this article too seriously. But just an opinion.

  25. wall_sconce says:

    so black girls are easy! i KNEW it!

  26. Kessa says:

    Katie: OKCupid is not “arranging marriages” and I agree that if they did that, it probably wouldn’t work out. How this works is that you tell OKCupid what you think is attractive, and it finds people based on what you tell it. So there’s low incentive to lie about what you think is attractive in this scenario: the data is not available to the general public.

    And actually, whenever I’ve been in a mixed religion or mixed race couple, I’ve had ALL KINDS of people tell me that the odds were low that the relationship would work out. True that they didn’t quote statistics, and of course it’s individually determined – that’s why the odds aren’t 0! But can you not conceive that for some people with some beliefs it would be hard to get along with people with an opposing set of beliefs, or that some people hold stereotypes about those who share their beliefs?

  27. anon says:

    @wall_sconce: Because writing an email is TOTALLY the same as jumping into the sack. Shh, I heard Gmail can make ya pregnant! I wouldn’t be surprised if this showed up in “abstinence education” syllabus under “sexting:.

  28. PausingLeming says:

    As I said in my last post (regarding reply rates),
    your research and results are wonderful!
    Your conclusions? partially wonderful.. You seem to miss research opportunities and explanations.

    The %match by religious attitude is not shocking.
    The less a person is into religion, the more he\she is compatible with ppl of other religions. So in a sense, all the ppl that “are laughing about it” are one group, regardless of their religion.

    In contrast, the more a person is religiously convicted, the more the actual religion matters, so a seriously committed Protestant wouldn’t find a seriously committed Muslim a good mate.

    I think what you should do is to break down the categories to the high resolution of both descriptors and define ppl by religion+attitude.
    Then, the trends will make best sense, and you may for instance discover that Muslims are very compatible with Muslims, if they share the same conviction.

  29. Janster says:

    The problem with the Zodiac study is that it doesn’t take into account that the match quiz questions are about lifestyle, not personality. The personalities that are associated with particular signs is allegedly why certain combinations of signs would typically get along better than others. Lifestyle choices wouldn’t necessarily be affected by this.

  30. MakaiOokami says:

    You guys should really remove the Agnostic option from the religion thingy. I mean Agnosticism doesn’t exist as a religion. There used to be a Gnostic religion but that was mostly destroyed by the Catholics centuries ago.

    Gnostic means knowledge. I am agnostic about what sex feels like because I’ve never had sex. Yet at the same time I am gnostic about what the female body looks like because I watch porn. Gnostic is a state of knowledge and it’s arguable that short of empirical evidence everyone is an agnostic.

    Similarily Atheist should not be an option either as theist means belief in a personal God. Deism means belief in a God but not one that is involved with our lives. You wouldn’t call every religion with a personal God Adeism so why would we use Atheism to describe those without any belief in a God when None describes our “religion” perfectly. I use religion in quotes because there are very few atheistic relgions but generally atheists aren’t a religion. They are just those that don’t see any convincing arguments for any religion.

    /rant.

  31. orchidsnv says:

    @MakaiOokami

    The Gnostic religion has nothing to do with Agnostics. Yes, the words share the same root, but they do not mean the same thing. Gnostic, proper noun (capital G) refers to a sect of early Christianity; an agnostic ( A- not gnostos- knowable. ) is someone who believes that it is not possible for us to know if God exists or not, a skeptic. You can use the word agnostic as you do in your example, however it is clearly intended to refer to God in this context.

  32. Concerned J says:

    That Jewish men and women are about as easy-going as Atheisists, is alarming. It means that Judaism is dying out. As Jews inter-marry the culture dies off. Being Jewish is a choice; it is work (a Bar Mitzvah is a public assumption of responsibility, for example and it requires sustained study to do even an easy one) ; part of that work includes finding a Jewish mate and reproducing. Jews are loving everyone else to death. As we continue to not reproduce or keep the culture, we as a people are committing suicide in our nice living rooms.

  33. Pingback: Sects in the City | Looking for love in all the wrong religions?

  34. Pemo Theodore says:

    Unfortunately I don’t think that this data says very much at all. Let’s face it – the questionnaires on OKCupid are lotsa fun but whether they have anything to do with successful matches & relationships is another question???? Now if this data was from successful couple matches, I would be inclined to sit up & take notice. I reviewed OKCupid’s relationship assessment & as a licensee in a number of profiling systems & also a relationship coach & an astrologer I can’t say that it was impressive. You can find my review http://bit.ly/30OhIN it was great fun & I didn’t get bored which counts for something but it doesn’t equal happy & compatible couples! Let’s talk again when you have data to process that speaks about real happy couples otherwise leave the matching to those with some experience in the field!

  35. Anugh. says:

    Pemo Theodore –

    Clearly you are not an actual member of this site. The Dating Persona Test that you are using to make your argument is just that – a test. It is not the actual questions that OKC uses to formulate our match percentages. Match percentages are formulated using other question which are raked with importance and acceptable answers from your ideal match. I, personally, have answered 400 questions. These questions range from my sex preferences, my eating habits, my ideas on animals, religion, family, love, hygiene, television, movies, books, music, clothing, exercise, and anything else that you could possibly dream. What you think we are being matched on is incorrect, and I would suggest that you change your blog to reflect your limited knowledge on the subject that you write about.

  36. Tilo says:

    Out of curiosity: have you controlled for Israeli versus non-Israeli Jews? I know that OKC has a fairly large Israeli userbase and this might skew the results. You separate by state within the US; i’m not sure how many Israeli versus Diaspora Jews you have, but it might be worth it to split these two groups.

    For examples which struck me as relevant while reading this post: Israeli Jews tend to be more emotionally attached to their Jewish identity relative to actual practice, and a huge chunk (probably a third or a half) of 20ers have spent extended period (3-6mo and up) and up in East Asia, India in particular.

  37. MountainManitou says:

    The point is, and I am in agreement with it, is that matching is based upon agreement or disagreement mainly. The data does not reflect success rates for relationships, as there doesn’t appear to be a great deal of information reflecting what happens after a match is made. Do OK Cupid members go on to be married? If so, for how long? Do they get divorced?

    What can be done to obtain that information? Should there be more involvement with relationship success or failure?

  38. Blk girl says:

    I would like to formally inform the White boys here to not get tooo excited thinking most Black women want you. We don’t! You and everyone knows this – in the real world. Some stupid bogus White propoganda “research” on a free dating website is not REALITY.

    In essence, most Black american women are repulsed by White males. We prefer our own and then other men of color next. White men would be last. That is, except for the few exceptions of Black women who are willing to open themslves up to dating white men.

    So once again, I know white people like to come up with stupid lil studies to make yourselves feel better about being White. Of course every race is DYYYYYYYYING to be with only White people *sarcasm* But this poll/stat, study or whatever you want to call it is not reality. Most Black women want BLACK MEN and White men are LAST on the list.

    Toodles!

  39. spiffynoodle says:

    “Guest” provides a perfect example of why the “serious Christians” are hard to get along with. 1) Totally missed the point of the article, 2) overly defensive and judgmental, 3) can’t spell. Lighten up, take some community college classes, and read the article again.

    I am a Serious Christian as well, and I do agree with the above points regarding “Guest”. But doesn’t this statement reveal that you too are judgemental? Stop generalizing. And I know plenty Serious Christians who are friendly, intelligent, and excellent spellers.

  40. Samuel says:

    “Now is a good time to stress that just because a group has low match percentages, even across the board, that does not mean they are bad people.”

    Progressives are so spineless. JUST WRITE THE MUSLIM CONCLUSION LIKE YOU DID ALL THE OTHER ONES COWARDS.

    I don’t understand why progressives hate domestic conservatives with such aggressive passion but when it comes to middle eastern conservatives, who tend to be 100x further to the right of center than the average American conservative(Women are treated like cattle. Homosexuality is punishable by death. No porn. No drugs or alcohol. No sex. No fun. etc.) they are on their hands and knees catering to their every wish.

    They need to grow a spine or a brain or both. Jesus H. W. Christ!

  41. Mike says:

    This post and the race one have led me to think about how (if at all) physical appearance factors into match questions. What about a set of questions that show photos of similar looking people. “Which one do you think is more attractive” being the main question. Instead of a “how should your match respond”, have a different set of 4 photos with “which do you most closely resemble?”

  42. Indian Girl says:

    Hindu Indian girls may not like Hindu Indian boys as much – because they do tend to be mama’s boys and spoilt. You have female infanticide in parts of India( Sivakami) and because of the dowry system that existed and still exists — families weclomed the birth of a son and detested the birth of a daughter. I have seen several ads on tv where the govt encouraged families to send their girls to school – not just favoring their sons.

    All that care to son alone — as a culture has now translated to hindu indian girls finding their counterparts just plain babies.

  43. FSM says:

    When will the much persecuted Pastafarians be given a slot?

  44. Timmy says:

    Regarding Pagans and Pastafarians.

    Request have been made to add tot he religion options on OkCupid. These request should be considered in light of OKC’s favorite thing, numbers.

    Based on the most recent and accurate numbers available, Pastafarians outnumber Pagans 10:1. Pastafarianism is the 13th most common religion on the world while Paganism, or Neo-Paganism, is 20th. At the moment, 9 options exist for religion on OKC. Because African, indigenous, and Chinese religions are uncommon amongst the user base, it would not be unreasonable to add Pastafarianism and those other religions with a significant following. Neo-Paganism however accounts for 0.0016% of the world population. This probably means that fewer than 50 OKC users are Pagan, a very verbal minority.

  45. jeff abcdefg says:

    As a ‘extremely serious’ Jewish male, I would say the reason we supposedly get along better with other faiths is that Judaism doesn’t claim you must be Jewish to ‘go to heaven.’ Everyone can ‘go up’ and be loved by G-d. Most everyone else in different religions insists you be one of them and that’s bound to cause problems.

  46. Hindu Guy says:

    Actually, the match rate on OkCupid for hindu men is low because anyone serious about finding a hindu man is prob on shaadi.com (j-date for indians) or hitting up family friends…

    Indian americans are actually among the most endogamous groups in American society, with Indian women as THE most endogamous female group.

    http://www.asian-nation.org/interracial.shtml

    Indian girls on OkCupid are, therefore, more likely to be interested in interracial dating. If they wanted Indian dating only, they’d be at indian dating.com.

    For the culturally confused indian girl who posted above. If you don’t like indian men because you have issues with your heritage, that is your business. Please do not project those views onto other indian girls who have found modern indian men who are not saddled with the baggage of antiquated views (which are or were found in all cultures). If you just so happen to find love outside of your culture–well and good, it’s a free country and we live in the modern era–but just as one should not cast value judgments against exogamy, the same applies to endogamy.

  47. Regina29 says:

    Hi, Yet another fascinating Oktrend posting! Thanks again for all of your number crunching! I just wanted to point out that you did not include “other” religions in your analysis. I’m sure you had a perfectly good reason for doing this.

    I wanted to say that I’m a Unitarian-Universalist. I realize that Unitarians are a very small percentage of the world’s population, totaling maybe 200,000 worldwide. Yet we are a pretty interesting crowd. The SAT organization in Princeton, NJ did some research awhile back and found that the kids with the highest SAT scores were Unitarian-Universalist teens. In second place were Jewish teens. Unitarians are also the most highly educated of all religions per capita. As I’m sure you Harvard fellows are aware, Boston is the Rome of Unitarianism. Boston was where it all happened, going back to when the Unitarians, led by the Concord crowd (Emerson, Thoreau, Whitman, Channing, etc), broke away from the Congregationalists over the Trinity.

    Due to not having a Unitarian-Universalist option on your site, I was forced to select other. I’m sure many other religions do as well from Taoists to Native Americans who practice their traditional spiritual paths.

    The funny thing about being a Unitarian-Universalist and “extremely” committed to it is that it actually, by definition, means that I am open to all world religions. Unitarians represent a very wide range of belief systems from atheists to Christians to Jews to Buddhists to Earth based religions to etc. Indeed, I am just fascinated by World Religions and pick core truths from many of them that I incorporate into my personal belief system.

    I thought I would point out that some “extremely” religious people, such as myself, actually are more open to other religions by definition. A devout Unitarian is a very different kind of animal than say a devout fundamentalist Protestant or devout Muslim.

    Thanks for all of your great work!

    Peace, Regina

  48. Robert Currey says:

    Your astrological data shows a surprising lack of deviation. According to sceptics there should be a variation on this type of survey (no matter how large the database) due to people’s knowledge of astrology and their preference for partners of certain signs and other factors like seasonal adjustments. However, since there are no such ‘artefacts’ I can only see two possible conclusions:
    1. That the Mayo-Eysenck Zodiac Zig-Zag experiment really does show a correlation between sun signs and extraversion (Mayo, White and Eysenck 1978; Smithers and Cooper 1978). Sceptics claim that this effect disappeared when the subjects had no prior knowledge of astrology, which showed that prior knowledge can nudge a person’s self-image in the direction of astrology (Eysenck and Nias 1982:50-60, Dean 1983c, van Rooij 1999). I tend to agree with the sceptics on this one.
    2. Or that someone has tinkered with your data or it is a complete invention to serve your or someone’s world-view. Either you are the culprit or you have been duped and need to go back to check the figures or have them checked by an independent sceptical third party.

    Personally, I would not expect a significant deviation on a Sun Sign survey of this kind that supports astrology after adjustment for artefacts. The reason is that while some newspaper astrologers claim that that certain Sun Signs relate better to others primarily to entertain readers who want quick solutions, professional astrologers always assess the success of a relationship on the basis of the entire horoscope which includes the interactions of the Moon sign and the planets.

    ~Robert Currey

  49. David256 says:

    “if two people match each other 69%, what it means is that they are very likely to like each other, based on their own definitions of what makes a person attractive, not ours.” – First of all, 69% is only 9% above average, and since you tweaked the algorithm some time ago to give higher scores to people that answered fewer questions, 69% may still be a very average match.

    Second, I found that OKCupid generally doesn’t ask me the questions I want to be asked. For instance, it is very important to me that my mate share some of my interests: video games, sciences, politics, computer programming, altruism, etc. But does OKCupid ask questions about such topics? Only very rarely. Instead it seems like I have been asked an endless parade of questions about my sexual preferences, and while I may put a “low” importance on most of them, their sheer quantity means that my match percentage is biased toward stuff that doesn’t matter all that much to me.

    That said, I think OKCupid is the best dating site around and you should all sign up!

    (By the way, when submitting a comment without an email address, might I recommend that after showing an error message, you not delete the person’s message when he/she clicks the browser “back” button? I’m using IE if that makes a difference.)

  50. Matthew Currie says:

    Speaking as an astrologer who actually makes a living at it… and has people come back and tell me that astrology actually WORKS… your dismissal of Astrology based on Sun Signs shows a lack of understanding of how it actually works.