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The Best Questions For A First Date
February 9, 2011 6:58 AM   Subscribe

The Best Questions For A First Date. What questions are easy to bring up, yet correlate to the deeper, unspeakable, issues people actually care about?
posted by Tom-B (106 comments total) 54 users marked this as a favorite

 
OKcupid is back, but it's so much more than just first date questions. For example, there is a correlation between stated religion and writing-level, and I wasn't quite expecting the pattern that emerged.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:08 AM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


You should ask the other person if they drink beer, 'cause if they do, you are getting laid.
posted by fixedgear at 7:09 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


You should ask the other person if they drink beer, 'cause if they do, you are getting laid.*

* 60% likelihood

Also, the following questions are good indicators if the guy'll go all the way on the first date:
* In a certain light, wouldn't nuclear war be exciting?
* Assuming you were in the position to do so, would you launch nuclear weapons under any circumstances?
* Could you imagine yourself killing someone?

If he answers "yes," you could get lucky. Then again, if you ask "wanna get nekkid at my place," you could also get lucky. And then you won't have to think of your new manfriend plotting his revenge against France via nuclear holocaust, or wonder who he's planning on killing.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:12 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


60 percent chance it will work 40 percent of the time?
posted by mooselini at 7:15 AM on February 9, 2011


Wait, there's a 60% chance it will work on 40% of people, 30% of the time?
posted by aramaic at 7:17 AM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


Now all your dates who read this will be watching for these questions.

"Do you like beer?"
"You're just trying to get in my pants, aren't you!"
"Well... yes. But also we're in a bar."
posted by naju at 7:17 AM on February 9, 2011 [21 favorites]


I just do the shocker sign and see if I get a response.

50% of the time, I try and get a 100% response.
posted by Senator at 7:19 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


Okay, if you want to know...
Will my date have sex on the first date?
Ask...

* Do you like the taste of beer?


Interesting. I always thought you were supposed to ask "Do you smoke?" (based on the idea that people who partake in one risky behavior are more likely to engage in another)
posted by The Gooch at 7:19 AM on February 9, 2011


I haven't been dating for a while, but isn't smoking (cigarettes) still considered a sex-to-follow indicator at least on par with beer drinking?
posted by Curious Artificer at 7:19 AM on February 9, 2011


Here's your Coke, The Gooch.
posted by Curious Artificer at 7:20 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


I haven't been dating for a while, but isn't smoking (cigarettes) still considered a sex-to-follow indicator at least on par with beer drinking?

the reasoning here is that the woman would rather have a penis uh --- instead? for the love of God, what?
posted by angrycat at 7:22 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


I haven't been dating for a while, but isn't smoking (cigarettes) still considered a sex-to-follow indicator at least on par with beer drinking?

I believe smoking cigarettes is a good sex indicator. Beer is just hitting the least common denominator.
posted by mooselini at 7:23 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


There is a big difference between "Do you like beer?" and "Do you like the taste of beer?" (the question in this post).
posted by empath at 7:24 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


I find it odd that there is no indicator for simply staring deeply, unblinkingly into your first date's eyes for at least ten minutes before sllllooooowwwwwlllyyy extending your arms out to wipe everything off the table or bar before you. If they start to question what you are doing, simply murmur "Hush, hush new friend" over and over again.

In my experience, if your date is still around after that, you have a pretty good chance at a second date.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 7:24 AM on February 9, 2011 [88 favorites]


If you were to be eaten by cannibal, how would you like to be prepaired?
also, what is the meaning here? like how you should be killed? or served? or both?
posted by angrycat at 7:25 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


i wonder if they'll continue doing these now that MATCH bought them
posted by liza at 7:27 AM on February 9, 2011


If they start to question what you are doing, simply murmur "Hush, hush new friend" over and over again.

You have to do this while holding your fingers up to their lips and stroking their hair.
posted by empath at 7:27 AM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


If you were to be eaten by cannibal, how would you like to be prepaired?
also, what is the meaning here? like how you should be killed? or served? or both?

Would you like fries with that?
posted by mooselini at 7:27 AM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


You have to do this while holding your fingers up to their lips and stroking their hair.

What, and be thought a churl or hussy?!
posted by robocop is bleeding at 7:29 AM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


I haven't been dating for a while, but isn't smoking (cigarettes) still considered a sex-to-follow indicator

"Remember, Chris, if she smokes, she pokes!"
posted by bondcliff at 7:32 AM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


My personal choice is: Would you consider killing someone because it would be exciting to launch a nuclear weapon against someone who disparaged the taste of beer?
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 7:37 AM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


Holy crap, Max Shron? Of the end-of-article tiny print fame? I know that guy. I went to dinner with him once (not on a date, thank god, as part of a group), and every single word out of his mouth was thoroughly off-putting and made me want to deck him.

Why-oh-why is he contributing anything to this article.

OK, I know why, it's because he's a math/stats guy. But seriously, OKCupid just lost hella credibility over here. Dang.
posted by phunniemee at 7:42 AM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


The proper response to "do you like the taste of beer" is to look really pained for a second, say "I don't know, I'm sort of sick of it, actually," and then, with one hand on your stomach and another over your mouth, to start violently regurgitating beer with the force of a fire hose, all while making that train whistle sound Roger Rabbit makes when he drinks whiskey.
posted by Sticherbeast at 7:42 AM on February 9, 2011 [15 favorites]


I thought it was interesting that there was a correlation between wanting people to be simple and being conservative. I can't lie, I got a lot of satisfaction from this find since I've always suspected this.
posted by hellslinger at 7:46 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


And also religious people not caring about grammar.
posted by empath at 7:48 AM on February 9, 2011 [3 favorites]


I'm off the dating market (sorry ladies), but if I were to go on a date with a new person, a key first date question would be "Are you a friend of Matt Haughey's?" Possibly followed by "Who was your favorite Doctor?"

Then probably the cannibalism one.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 7:49 AM on February 9, 2011 [6 favorites]


I ask guys if they like the taste of beer and if they say "yes" then I stick my tongue in their mouth. Then my husband has to drag me out of another bar I can never go back to again.
posted by padraigin at 7:49 AM on February 9, 2011 [40 favorites]


Well - I don't like beer, I don't want to launch a nuclear war, and I can't imagine killing someone - but sex on a first date? Hell yeah!!

Am I just a sexy statistical anomaly? No - I'm a GUY. (And as a gay guy - we are going to have sex on the first date before we even have dinner. In fact - this is mandatory, cause I am biiiiig eater, and sex with a belly full of curried chicken is not fun for anyone).
posted by helmutdog at 7:52 AM on February 9, 2011 [19 favorites]


helmutdog, that might be the funniest thing I've ever heard on metafilter.
posted by hellslinger at 7:53 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


Do you like the taste of American beer? Then let's have sex in a canoe!
posted by Obscure Reference at 7:55 AM on February 9, 2011 [21 favorites]


helmutdog: "and sex with a belly full of curried chicken is not fun for anyone"

Especially the chicken.
posted by theredpen at 8:00 AM on February 9, 2011 [10 favorites]


So, people who aren't really serious about Buddhism are the best writers? Interesting.
posted by HumanComplex at 8:03 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


I think people who aren't very serious about religion, as a group, are going to be more well read than the average person.
posted by empath at 8:04 AM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


* Could you imagine yourself killing someone?

"Hang on a second..."

*stare fixedly at date for about a minute in complete silence*

"Yeah. Yeah I can."
posted by quin at 8:08 AM on February 9, 2011 [22 favorites]


Wait, I thought the right question was "Do you like Pizza? Wanna fuck?" Or is that for hitting on a stranger?
posted by spicynuts at 8:13 AM on February 9, 2011


Of course, now that this article is out there, you can't ask your date if she likes the taste of beer.
posted by empath at 8:13 AM on February 9, 2011


Turistas: the best date movie of all time?

Say what you will about their SEO practices*, the OKCupid bloggers have a fantastic sense of humor.

*Or don't. They provide a free service and a nontrivial amount of hilarious infogeekery. Is that so wrong?
posted by kittyprecious at 8:20 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


I liked the article, though I thought it was a bit short.
posted by IvoShandor at 8:24 AM on February 9, 2011


I'm happy to say I'm a not-so-serious Buddhist who likes the taste of beer.
posted by Meatbomb at 8:34 AM on February 9, 2011


Do you like the taste of American beer? Then let's have sex in a canoe!
posted by Obscure Reference at 9:55 AM on February 9 [5 favorites +] [!]
Eponysterical.
posted by adamrice at 8:34 AM on February 9, 2011 [5 favorites]


And also religious people not caring about grammar.

Which is strange when you think about how the people in this world who do care about grammar do so with an almost religious fanatacism.

(That sentence is probably lacking in punctuation somewheres, but I care not, I'm a lazy Buddhist.)
posted by sonika at 8:35 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


Do you like the taste of American beer? Then let's have sex in a canoe!
posted by Obscure Reference at 9:55 AM on February 9 [5 favorites +] [!]

Eponysterical.


Related: when you google "have sex in a canoe", the second result is the wikipedia article on Canadian identity.
posted by penduluum at 8:39 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


"I'm one of those horrible men who judges women by the most shallow criteria. Don't ever try to judge a woman, or anybody, by asking them their top three records, top five foreign films of all time — that's that High Fidelity stupid list shit that some guys do...

And I'm driving, I'm driving, I'm driving, will will is breaking down, finally FUCK IT, I really need to know;

HENRY: So, what are the 3 CDs in your changer right now?

HENRY'S DATE: Well, I'm really listening to the new Nickelback...

HENRY'S BRAKES: ***SCREEEEEEEEEEECH***

HENRY: GET THE FUCK OUT OF MY CAR!"
-Henry Rollins on Dating
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 8:46 AM on February 9, 2011 [10 favorites]


"Hey, is that a cold sore on your lips?"
posted by elder18 at 8:49 AM on February 9, 2011


I think asking someone if grammar and spelling mistakes bother them is a better way to find out if they're on Metafilter.
posted by missmary6 at 8:50 AM on February 9, 2011 [7 favorites]



And also religious people not caring about grammar.


As a regular visitor to Metafilter, the opposite certainly came as no surprise
posted by The Gooch at 8:50 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


OK, so I had an OKC first date last night. Date Guy asked me about my previous relationship and I alluded to what ultimately became my issue relative to the tough break-up of that relationship, our age difference (me older).

Date Guy geared into highly empathetic mode, listening, nodding, hmmn'ing, took a thoughtful pause and then responded, "Well, obviously, we'll get along. You must have been with a younger man for so long because you like a lot of sex. I just want you to know, I can go from Friday night to Sunday afternoon with just a bottle of water on the night table to sustain me. I don't need Viagra. With me, you don't need a younger man!"

This is like, 15 minutes in. I'm still a little in shock over this part of the conversation, so I'm at a loss as to how to frame it for all y'all but I feel like it fits here. I immediately felt insulted, huffy, turned off, flight/fighty. He's a stranger to me and this sealed his fate so I didn't bother unpacking my thoughts/words but I shut. it. down. Eew. Can you imagine?
posted by thinkpiece at 8:59 AM on February 9, 2011 [12 favorites]


thinkpiece: This is like, 15 minutes in. I'm still a little in shock over this part of the conversation, so I'm at a loss as to how to frame it for all y'all but I feel like it fits here. I immediately felt insulted, huffy, turned off, flight/fighty. He's a stranger to me and this sealed his fate so I didn't bother unpacking my thoughts/words but I shut. it. down. Eew. Can you imagine?

Did you make use of the lemon law (of dating)? I know 15 minutes is a bit long, but I'm sure there are circumstances, such as yours, that can allow to extend that 5 minute window. Because that sounds like a rather wordy version of "my name is Buck, and I like to fuck."
posted by filthy light thief at 9:04 AM on February 9, 2011


"* Do spelling and grammar mistakes annoy you?

If your date answers 'no'—i.e. is okay with bad grammar and spelling—the odds of him or her being at least moderately religious is slightly better than 2:1."

So is a corollary to this that Atheists and Agnostics are more likely to be linguistic prescriptivists?
posted by vapidave at 9:34 AM on February 9, 2011 [3 favorites]


I knew this gal whose first date question was always "So ... what should we name the kids?" And she already knew what she wanted to name them. (For amusement I tracked her down many years later and found out that her first pick name was indeed in evidence amongst her progeny, who had, given the somewhat unusual choice of first name, wisely switched to a completely unrelated nickname) People have some weird ideas about first date conversations.
posted by adipocere at 9:43 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


thinkpiece: ...and then responded, "Well, obviously, we'll get along. You must have been with a younger man for so long because you like a lot of sex. I just want you to know, I can go from Friday night to Sunday afternoon with just a bottle of water on the night table to sustain me.

I suspect that if that line ever worked at all, it would have worked until Saturday morning at the latest, so yeah, clueless.
posted by StickyCarpet at 9:46 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


Good lord, the comments. Someone says, “This can’t be true. I’m a devout Christian and very, very smart so my personal experience wholly refutes this data” (following several other comments saying things that essentially boiled down to that) and everyone jumps on him. OKC appears to be a site full of people with broken sarcasm meters.
posted by naoko at 9:52 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


"my name is Buck, and I like to fuck."

"My name is Larry, and I will only contemplate having sexual relations with a person if that person is a person I wish to marry".

"My name is Rodomy, and I enjoy ... uh, actually, nevermind."

"My name is Aaron, and not for long will your womb be barren."

"My name is Boon, and people tell me I come too so-ooooh, there we go. Sorry."

"My name is Milton, and something about that look on your face tells me that your sexual desire is wiltin'."
posted by the quidnunc kid at 9:56 AM on February 9, 2011 [21 favorites]


My name is Floydd and I'm annoyed.
posted by Floydd at 10:00 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


My name is Orange, and I ... oh damn.
posted by Comrade_robot at 10:02 AM on February 9, 2011 [12 favorites]


My name is Tom and I assure you that I will make sweet love to you with great aplomb.
posted by Meatbomb at 10:09 AM on February 9, 2011 [3 favorites]


Protestants who are serious about their faith tend to date people they meet at church or via other church-related functions, so I'm guessing that the group of seriously-religious protestants who use OKCupid is far less representative than the seriously-atheist atheists who use OKCupid.
posted by straight at 10:09 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


You Americans are so quaint with your whole "dating" thing. It always makes me picture you driving your T-birds to the hop or jitterbugging at the diner, you crazy cats.
posted by Decani at 10:16 AM on February 9, 2011 [6 favorites]


You Americans are so quaint with your whole "dating" thing. It always makes me picture you driving your T-birds to the hop or jitterbugging at the diner, you crazy cats.
posted by Decani at 12:16 PM on February 9 [+] [!]
Well, there's dating and there's dating. Me and the fiancee's first "date" was her coming by my house with a 12-pack and a copy of Wild Zero.

My name is Jesse. It's gonna get messy
posted by jtron at 10:20 AM on February 9, 2011 [7 favorites]


And I don't want to know how this one ends...
"My name is Loopy..."
posted by LoopyG at 10:23 AM on February 9, 2011


Well motherfuckers my name is Andy and I'm feelin real randy.

OK that sucked
posted by IvoShandor at 10:23 AM on February 9, 2011


"My name is Loopy and you're making me feel all schmoopy!" Of course.
posted by thinkpiece at 10:28 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


I always find the stuff that OKCupid does with their data to be fascinating. Where does one learn to crunch data like this? Statistics?
posted by jnnla at 10:29 AM on February 9, 2011


Where does one learn to crunch data like this? Statistics?

Any statistics professor would fail them for being this sloppy.
posted by empath at 10:31 AM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


[bunch of comments removed - knock it off with the rapey jokes.]
posted by jessamyn at 10:39 AM on February 9, 2011 [3 favorites]


"Simon/Jayne or Simon/Mal?"
posted by kmz at 10:55 AM on February 9, 2011 [9 favorites]


Although whoever writes blog.okcupid.com (Christian Rudder?) is a bit overly informed by their own opinion in which avenues to investigate and doesn't present the findings in grant-appropriate language and even though the data are only from the subset of people that own computers and are connected to the internet and are willing to look for companionship online it still is actual data from a large sample from a free to join website.
I'm certain that we've seen the last of these since any future analysis will have to be approved by multiple departments in Match.com.
I think that is a loss.
posted by vapidave at 10:58 AM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


The most important question for a first date for me: Do you have a TARDIS?
posted by miss-lapin at 11:32 AM on February 9, 2011 [3 favorites]


The most important question for a first date for me: Do you have a TARDIS?

"Yes. We were great together, incidentally."
posted by mightygodking at 11:41 AM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


miss-lapin: "The most important question for a first date for me: Do you have a TARDIS?"

"Is that a genuine Gallifreyan Sonic Screwdriver in your pants or are you just happy to see me?"
posted by zarq at 11:50 AM on February 9, 2011


My name is Killbot-1138 and I'm enjoying this date.
posted by zippy at 12:14 PM on February 9, 2011


"Simon/Jayne or Simon/Mal?"

It don't matter when it's Arcturian.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 12:44 PM on February 9, 2011


Of course, once you've sealed the deal and gone back to their house, it's important to keep rhyming.
posted by Infinite Jest at 1:28 PM on February 9, 2011


I believe smoking cigarettes is a good sex indicator.

Please clarify: Smoking cigarettes is a good indicator of 1st date sex.
-or-
Smoking cigarettes is an indicator of good sex.
posted by theora55 at 1:29 PM on February 9, 2011


my name is rubah; wanna touch my boobah?

no please, don't do that
posted by rubah at 1:32 PM on February 9, 2011


My name is Roger, and my name is Roger.
posted by maxwelton at 1:38 PM on February 9, 2011


Once on a first date I discussed with my date which members of the Bush administration would have to be assassinated before we'd be far enough down the chain of command to be left with someone decent in charge. My date liked me a *LOT*. Previous to me he'd been on a streak of first dates women who only talked about reality TV, shopping, and their children.
posted by Jacqueline at 1:43 PM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


So here's my fantasy "best question on a first date": "So, did you see that phenomenal FPP earlier today?!" MeFis, sign up for OKC! Find me! (ok ok, self-serving, FIAMO)
posted by thinkpiece at 2:08 PM on February 9, 2011


My name is jessamyn
you are a mighty fine specimen
I don't like the taste of beer
Or the OK Cupid blog very much, would you like to come over and watch a movie and get offline for a bit?
posted by jessamyn at 2:12 PM on February 9, 2011 [14 favorites]


This was a bit sloppier than some of their previous efforts. I'm hardly asking for a peer-reviewed study, but it could have used a little less confidence in its own conclusions. On the other hand, they just got bought, so it's probably beer'o'clock for them.
posted by adipocere at 2:33 PM on February 9, 2011


Well, there's dating and there's dating. Me and the fiancee's first "date" was her coming by my house with a 12-pack and a copy of Wild Zero.

OMG jtron, I love that movie, and if you guys watched that on a first date you are both awesome, and I wish I could date both of you. But actually I guess that would probably be kind of weird, so nevermind I just got a bit excited there for a sec sorry.
posted by dubitable at 2:40 PM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


"Which was your favourite Chronicle of Gor?"
posted by obiwanwasabi at 3:18 PM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


I can't imagine meeting a total stranger and trying to impress them right then and there, without a backspace key and at least 3 years of an online relationship. You normal, socially-well-adjusted people are totally insane.

The most important question for a first date for me: Do you have a TARDIS?

Yes, but be warned, baby: it's bigger on the inside.
..But I heard if you gaze into its core, it'll fulfill your deepest desires.
posted by jake at 3:36 PM on February 9, 2011 [5 favorites]


I can't imagine meeting a total stranger and trying to impress them right then and there, without a backspace key

This, as a fragment, is the best and truest and funniest thing I've read all week. (Marked very important, on a scale of irrelevant to 5.)
posted by carbide at 3:55 PM on February 9, 2011


without a backspace key

Back in the day, a backspace key wouldn't save you.
posted by kmz at 4:19 PM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


"Do you like to taste beer while killing someone in the midst of a nuclear war?"
posted by Greg_Ace at 4:50 PM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


kmz, if I remember correctly, some modern IM clients do this too. Why would ANYONE want that? Though I do like the thought of IM-based shouting matches complete with interruptions, where you can type a response before the other person even finishes a sentence.

Something like 90% of my time in Google collaborative apps is spent doing things like typing "boners" in random places and quickly deleting it, then acting bewildered and offended when they eventually notice.

I wonder if there would be a market for online speed-dating, like Chat Roulette but with faces instead of dongs, to help those of us who are not smooth talkers practice these important icebreaker questions.
posted by jake at 5:11 PM on February 9, 2011


Simon/Jayne OF COURSE.
posted by The Whelk at 5:26 PM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


my name is not_on_display;
i will drink that beer
that jessamyn's giving away.
thanks. now you get outta here.
posted by not_on_display at 5:41 PM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


I thought the Obscure Reference was, "...making love in a canoe?" Am I wrong?
posted by Chuffy at 5:50 PM on February 9, 2011


The proper response to "do you like the taste of beer" is to look really pained for a second, say "I don't know, I'm sort of sick of it, actually," and then, with one hand on your stomach and another over your mouth, to start violently regurgitating beer with the force of a fire hose, all while making that train whistle sound Roger Rabbit makes when he drinks whiskey.

Yeah, in that case I woulda known I wasn't getting any even without this study. But I'm intuitive.
posted by msalt at 6:03 PM on February 9, 2011


Simon/Jayne or Simon/Mal?

Does sitting around playing Internet Roulette with Firefly and then making out count as a date?
posted by NoraReed at 9:14 PM on February 9, 2011


So nobody else thinks "Are clams alive?" worthy of comment? I wonder if that's because it was buried in the drop-down material, or because it just didn't interest anyone.

(Viruses, why, yes, there has been some debate. Clams, not so much.)
posted by gingerest at 11:29 PM on February 9, 2011


Looking at their scatterplot of answer privacy vs. answer diversity, I'm somewhat concerned that questions like "Is your race superior?", "Is interracial marriage a bad idea?", and "Is homosexuality a sin?" elicited opinions that were both homogeneous and something most people wanted to hide.
posted by Rhaomi at 12:59 AM on February 10, 2011


Are clams alive?

Coded Scientology question, obviously.
posted by msalt at 1:51 AM on February 10, 2011


(Viruses, why, yes, there has been some debate. Clams, not so much.)

Viruses are totally alive.
Viral particles? Those are among the undead.
posted by Blasdelb at 6:07 AM on February 10, 2011


I finally see where things have been going awry all this time.
posted by pinkbungalow at 7:24 AM on February 10, 2011


I think people who aren't very serious about religion, as a group, are going to be more well read than the average person.

The one outlier was in Judaism, where the "Very Serious" beat out the "somewhat serious". Very serious Jews probably have a strong background in Torah study, so you'd better believe they're well read (albeit, targetedly so, although many Orthodox Jews I've met are pretty serious all around when it comes to learning and are smart folks.)

And this kind of correlation really only work this way in places like the US with a lot of religious heterogeneity with few national norms. In a place like Egypt, 90% or so of the people are Muslim, and prevailing attitudes mean that well over half of them would qualify as "serious about it". In that kind of context, you're simply not going to get the same correlations as in the US. There are going to be a lot of very well well-read practicing Muslims.
posted by Deathalicious at 7:46 AM on February 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


The beer thing wasn't true in my case anyway. Beer used to my obsession, I rarely drank anything else alcoholic and used to take mental notes of all the different kinds etc. a la that beer map post's emerging snob discussion, back when I was in my early 20s and pretty asexual and hyper-vigilant about my body. I got tired of it and moved to something different (cocktails and wine) around when I also got way more comfortable being physical with people. Not that the progression is related, just, to me anyway I always equate beer with that young college kid phase when you've still got all your shields up and are a little wary and uncomfortable at the thought of the unknown. (shrug)
posted by ifjuly at 8:50 AM on February 10, 2011


There are plenty of religious people who care about spelling and grammar. But they apparently either don't use OKCupid or, when they do use OKCupid, they don't disclose to OKCupid that particular quirk (maybe they think that's a trait that doesn't lend itself to getting dates).

All the numbers presented in that article tell us is that people who self-identify as atheists and who use OKCupid are more likely to say that they care about spelling and grammar than people who self-identify as religious and use OKCupid.

Sure, it's tempting to interpret the data as suggesting that self-identifying atheists tend, more than religious folks, to think they're smarter than other people and be critical of what they perceive as the intellectual failings of those around them. But that's not supported by the data.
posted by The World Famous at 11:02 AM on February 10, 2011


It also may be that particularly devout religious people of certain denominations are relatively unlikely to use OKCupid. There are other dating sites that cater to devout members of particular religions and, for some of those, I suspect that well-educated, devout members of those religions rationally choose those sites rather than OKCupid. For example, every Mormon I know who is over 30 and single is on LDSsingles.com (*shiver*), but very few of them are on OKCupid.
posted by The World Famous at 11:06 AM on February 10, 2011


World Famous, also keep in mind that "over 30 and single" is much less common among devout Mormons than among serious atheists. So just right there would be enough to say that devout Mormons on OKCupid are less representative of their religious group than atheists on OKCupid are of their (a)religious group.
posted by straight at 1:58 AM on February 11, 2011


All the numbers presented in that article tell us is that people who self-identify as atheists and who use OKCupid are more likely to say that they care about spelling and grammar than people who self-identify as religious and use OKCupid.

Actually, the "spelling and grammar" vs religion rubric comes from textual analysis of their profiles, not from self-evaluation. It's not surprising though that the actual question: "Do you care about spelling or grammar?" would correlate with people's own proficiency level (measured on actual proficiency).

So religious people may not care as much about spelling and grammar by their own admission, but they also are measurably worse at it.
posted by Deathalicious at 12:40 PM on February 13, 2011


Also: I just looked at the rubrics and it looks like the "very" serious people beat out the "somewhat" serious for Buddhist, Protestant and Catholic as well. Looks like this wasn't unique to Judaism after all.
posted by Deathalicious at 12:45 PM on February 13, 2011


So religious people may not care as much about spelling and grammar by their own admission, but they also are measurably worse at it.

You mean self-identifying religious people who use OKCupid, not just "religious people."
posted by The World Famous at 8:41 AM on February 14, 2011


Deathalicious: " The one outlier was in Judaism, where the "Very Serious" beat out the "somewhat serious". Very serious Jews probably have a strong background in Torah study, so you'd better believe they're well read (albeit, targetedly so, although many Orthodox Jews I've met are pretty serious all around when it comes to learning and are smart folks.)"

As The World Famous mentions, they're also probably not using OK Cupid. They're more likely using J-Date, Frumster or another service that caters to those who share their religious beliefs / cultural background.
posted by zarq at 9:19 AM on February 14, 2011


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