A few years ago, a psychologist at Columbia University by the name of Sheena Iyengar conducted a study on the “tyranny of choice” we face each day by conducting experiments that tempted people with varying amounts of chocolate and fancy jams.
Her conclusion: more choice can actually be worse than less choice. In fact, the more choice her study participants had, the more difficulty they had making up their mind. And when there was too much to choose from, people weren’t as satisfied with the choices they did make.
“The same Godiva chocolate chosen from a set of 30 chocolates is considered to be less delicious than if it is chosen from a set of six,” Iyengar said, summarizing her results. (On a side note, fun study or what?)
How does this apply to online dating? Well, go to any site and you’ll find hundreds – if not thousands – of beautiful strangers looking for a romantic connection. It’s a virtual candy store out there and many of us are hard pressed not to want to nibble on each and every chocolate we see in the window. While some might argue this obsessive sampling is the very essence of dating, others would call it by its proper name: compulsive shopping.
By appealing to our inherently fickle nature, online dating transforms people into commodities and much like any other inanimate object you can order via the web – computers, cell phones, cappuccino makers – upgrading is a snap.
Not surprisingly, many singles have grown tired of the tyranny of choice that exists in the online dating world (You have 496 new matches!) and are opting for dating sites that embrace the “less is more” (or even, Les is more) approach.
Curious? Check out this tech story from NBCnews.com that profiles new dating apps that “promise love, not match overload.”