Turks have negative view on online dating: Study
ISTANBUL- Anadolu Agency
The study was conducted by Dilşah Ece Eren and Selenga Gurmen at Istanbul’s Özyeğin University.
Titled “Comparison of online vs. offline dating in terms of romantic beliefs, commitment, relationship maintenance behaviors and relationship satisfaction”, it surveyed people who use and do not use online
dating apps in Turkey.
It found that 60% of those surveyed between the ages of 18 and 50 used online dating apps, 30% of which said such apps are better platforms for meeting someone new.
Since there are few studies that have compared relationships that started face-to-face and on online platforms, this study could be considered the first to investigate people's experiences in terms of relationships that started online in Turkey.
Despite the apparent popularity of online dating apps in Turkey, the study revealed that views and attitudes in the country toward online dating are negative overall. However, they said there are no previous studies that compared people’s experiences with online relationships and ones that started face-to-face
The data in the study showed that 276 participants started their relationships offline (face-to-face) and 270 others started through online dating apps and social media. In the research, the participants were mostly at least university graduates.
Nearly half of the participants’ parents have university degrees. Some 165 participants met through social media sites (mainly Twitter and Instagram) and 95 met through online dating apps (mostly Tinder).
“As a result, the present study failed to find a difference between those groups,” they said, explaining that the bigger number of people using the Internet does not mean online dating is increasing.
The only striking difference was found in terms of romantic beliefs between online daters and non-daters: the higher the romantic expectations a person has, the more superficial they find online dating, said Eren and Gurmen.
The research showed that people who prefer online dating are more educated and have full-time jobs. On the other hand, it emphasized that another study showed that online daters tend to stick to casual relationships rather than move on to marriage. Still, further studies are needed to understand this
Eren and Gurmen stressed that Turkey can be considered a traditional country. It is a non-Western country but also has modernized aspects that are similar to the West. Moreover, cultural diversity is increasing in Turkey, and it is not possible to talk about prototypical cultural features. Furthermore, rapid
social and cultural transformations are taking place, and this leads to overall changes in lifestyles.
The study underlined that culture is an important way of experiencing a relationship in general. Romantic love is favored more in industrialized and technologically developed countries, but Turkish culture has been undergoing a rapid transformation due to urbanization and an increase in education levels for the last 20 years.
Besides relationship-related changes, the purposes of Internet use have also changed in Turkey over time.
Turkey, along with Germany, has the highest number of Internet users in Europe.