They like Diet Coke.
September 8, 2010 9:24 AM   Subscribe

 
I have to give the OkCupid guys credit, they are fearless.
posted by Nelson at 9:27 AM on September 8, 2010 [30 favorites]


OK fucking Cupid?
Meta fucking Filter?

Nope, not working for me.
posted by chavenet at 9:28 AM on September 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


So, jews are better read than agnostics. I knew it!
posted by Mister_A at 9:30 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Big Lebowski, now there's a surprise /rolls eyes/
posted by 2bucksplus at 9:32 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Can we take a break advertising okcupid?
posted by eeeeeez at 9:33 AM on September 8, 2010 [9 favorites]


Or rather, stuff people searching for mates want people to think they like.
posted by ghharr at 9:34 AM on September 8, 2010 [32 favorites]


I know most of these get posted here, but they keep being interesting. I thought I'd leave it up to the mods.
posted by cmoj at 9:34 AM on September 8, 2010 [10 favorites]


Informative enough to be interesting in its own context, but as usual you really shouldn't try and extrapolate this stuff onto the general populace. And shouldn't this be "Stuff White People Think Other People Think They Should Like to Get Laid"?
posted by charred husk at 9:36 AM on September 8, 2010 [21 favorites]


I found the whole thing pretty interesting. Neat post.
posted by CitrusFreak12 at 9:38 AM on September 8, 2010


If I'm reading this right... I must be Dominican!
posted by Mister_A at 9:38 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


But it's not really "stuff white people like" it's "stuff white people mention liking that people of other races don't mention liking." This doesn't mean that the things on that list were most commonly mentioned by group X, or even that they were mentioned very commonly at all.

But still interesting, I suppose.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 9:39 AM on September 8, 2010 [5 favorites]


Alicia Keys has apparently won over a huge percentage of the female population of OkCupid.
posted by redsparkler at 9:39 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Love this and would dearly like to share it with my FB "friends" but there's this subgroup of them that would react very, very badly to several of the charts.

I think this is why I resent FaceBook, but I nevertheless keep it around to make sure that I don't turn my life into an echo chamber. Although I could really do without the Obama hate screeds.
posted by seanmpuckett at 9:39 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


And shouldn't this be "Stuff White People Think Other People Think They Should Like to Get Laid"?

In which case, white men: Tom Clancy, really? Really, white men?!
posted by Edwahd at 9:42 AM on September 8, 2010 [38 favorites]


Can we take a break advertising okcupid?

I don't get the objection. OKCupid is not a paid service, and these blog posts are fascinating. There's not even a real come-on in them to sign up for anything.
posted by empath at 9:42 AM on September 8, 2010 [24 favorites]


White women don't actually like the Red Sox as much as the stats indicate. OK Cupid has a large presence in Boston, so that skews it. This combines with the fact that oftentimes saying "I like the Red Sox" is code for "I'm really down to earth and you could totally have a beer with me." It's the modern New England equivalent of the "long walks on the beach" cliche.

Then you might discuss the Red Sox with the woman claiming to be a big fan and find out that she owns a pink hat and thinks that the attempt to trade Mike Lowell was wrong based on the fact that he's handsome and a nice guy.

[DISCLAIMER: This is a broad generalization for comic effect. I know many women who are very knowledgeable fans (including the one I married), just as I know men who pretend to follow the team and think that departed players from 2007 are still on the roster. These men probably also list "the sox" on their OK Cupid profiles.]
posted by Mayor Curley at 9:42 AM on September 8, 2010 [15 favorites]


The Red Sox?! Sickening. Come on white women; what's wrong with you?!
posted by (bb|[^b]{2}) at 9:43 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


They're doing this all wrong.

With the data they have, they should actually be able to apply a clustering algorithm, group people together logically, and thus determine a more useful set of races than the quaint and antiquated ones we keep clinging on to.

And then the civil wars can begin.
posted by Wolfdog at 9:43 AM on September 8, 2010 [25 favorites]


Can some asian ladies kindly explain to me what the fuck is coz?
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 9:43 AM on September 8, 2010 [5 favorites]


so which group likes bigassed fonts that make a page impossible to read?
posted by pyramid termite at 9:44 AM on September 8, 2010


It's the complementary function to zin.
posted by Wolfdog at 9:44 AM on September 8, 2010 [44 favorites]


Just to be clear, I'm not an asian lady.
posted by Wolfdog at 9:45 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


I don't like Tom Clancy or golf = I am not a real white man.

Next step: Figuring out whether I'm not white, or whether I'm not a man.
posted by lukemeister at 9:45 AM on September 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


I actually thought this was very interesting, and like all these okcupid things that keep coming out.

As an aside, Soul Food is not only the name of a food, but also a TV show and a movie, which maybe explain its enourmous popularity among black people's profiles; a reference to any of these would count as one.
posted by Ideal Impulse at 9:45 AM on September 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


With the data they have, they should actually be able to apply a clustering algorithm, group people together logically, and thus determine a more useful set of races than the quaint and antiquated ones we keep clinging on to.

That's a really interesting idea. You should email that suggestion to them.
posted by empath at 9:46 AM on September 8, 2010 [3 favorites]




Tom Clancy, Van Halen, and Golfing. I'm pretty sure I went to high school with every white male on OKCupid.
posted by The World Famous at 9:47 AM on September 8, 2010 [5 favorites]


Also, much respect to the Middle Eastern ladies for putting Baudelaire so high up on the like pyramid. I was not expecting that one.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 9:47 AM on September 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


What I find inexplicable are some of the media that show up. Latinos like Of Mine and Men? Asian dudes like LA Confidential? I mean, I do too, but what would skew these racially?
posted by cmoj at 9:48 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Anecdotal support for the religiosity of black people, btw: I used to do desktop support for a federal govt agency, and had to ask people for their passwords a lot to fix stuff. A surprisingly large number of african americans used variations of "Bless You" and "Thank You Jesus" and similar as passwords. And I can't recall a single white person who did. White women used their kids and pets names. White guys used cusswords.
posted by empath at 9:50 AM on September 8, 2010 [19 favorites]


Halloween Jack: "You know who else likes the Red Sox?"

An ex-army sniper that I hang out with.

So I like the Red Sox, too.
(Smiles and waves pennant out his office window in the direction of a rooftop one mile away.)
posted by charred husk at 9:51 AM on September 8, 2010 [10 favorites]


What is it that makes a culture unique? How are whites Americans, blacks Americans, Asians Americans, or whoeverother Americans different from everybody else?

I like these posts, but let's not pretend they are anything other than statistically-semi-valid-at-best snapshot of a particular culture for a short time period (so far).
posted by DU at 9:52 AM on September 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


Based on the first two rows of words, I would really not get along with the white guys on OKCupid. I'm not big on the words listed for the other races/gender, but man.

Tom Clancy? Really?
posted by brundlefly at 9:52 AM on September 8, 2010


Meta fucking Filter.
posted by spinturtle at 9:52 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Is it Ghostbusters, too?
posted by Artw at 9:53 AM on September 8, 2010


Given what I understand of the OKCupid's demographics, I wasn't expecting white males to be such bros.
posted by prunes at 9:54 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Also, FUCK YEAH ATHEISTS!
posted by brundlefly at 9:54 AM on September 8, 2010 [22 favorites]


They left out the "Stuff Gay People Like" which is really unfortunate, because after years of dating on OkCupid, I could recite that litany in my sleep:

Lady Gaga
Laughing
My Dog
Chapstick
Sex
My iPhone
Dancing
I'm ready to be serious
Diet Coke
I'm not a big reader
Kathy Griffin
posted by jph at 9:58 AM on September 8, 2010 [34 favorites]


Black guys are apparently into Network Attached Storage. Who knew?

I am white. What is "nas" in this context?
posted by The Bellman at 9:58 AM on September 8, 2010 [7 favorites]


Lebowski? Motorcycles? World War Z? Boats? Software? The Coen Brothers? Hitchhiker's Guide? Fixing things? Zappa? Ghostbusters? Beer?

Wait a minute --- I'm a white man?







... Mom never told me.
posted by Elsa at 9:59 AM on September 8, 2010 [5 favorites]


I'd like to see what the other groups are looking for too. Like, white men (claim to) like Golf Clancy but are there any significant groups looking for people who (claim to) like Golf Clancy?

Also, I always though "I'm cool" was code for "you can smoke weed around me, I don't mind, maaaan".
posted by DU at 9:59 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Seriously, though. Coz? I know a hell of a lot of Asian women and I can't begin to know what this is/means.
posted by Navelgazer at 9:59 AM on September 8, 2010


so which group likes bigassed fonts that make a page impossible to read?

Are you using Opera? For some reason the text is really fucked up in Opera. Chrome rendered it fine though.
posted by kmz at 9:59 AM on September 8, 2010


I am white. What is "nas" in this context?

Nas
posted by brundlefly at 10:00 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


The ballman: Nas.
posted by Navelgazer at 10:00 AM on September 8, 2010


Also, I'm apparently an Indian Woman and I'm going to go ahead and try not to act surprised by that.
posted by jph at 10:00 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


The Best Most of the Web.
posted by applemeat at 10:01 AM on September 8, 2010


God, what a relief it is to realize that I'm not as "white" as I'm supposed to be. I'd really hate to have to like The Offspring, Queens of the Stone Age, and Dropkick Murphys, and have never read a Tom Clancy book in my life (nor do I expect to).
posted by blucevalo at 10:01 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Damn. I'm now even more certain that I have nothing in common with other members of my race. I have mixed feelings about this, but it might explain why my dating history so far has been 100% interracial. Good thought-provoking post, as usual for OKCupid.
posted by naju at 10:03 AM on September 8, 2010


oftentimes saying "I like the Red Sox" is code for "I'm really down to earth and you could totally have a beer with me." It's the modern New England equivalent of the "long walks on the beach" cliche.

That's adorable -- you have your own version of "hockey fan"?

Same disclaimer -- many Canadian women are in fact hockey fans, and know far more about the sport and participants than I do. But for many others, it's "I'm really down to earth and you could totally have a beer with me." Mrs. Bronzefist: hockey fan.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 10:04 AM on September 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


American White People. It's quite important to note that there are people elsewhere.

Now excuse me while I return to my yurt to watch the Red Sox and eat some soul food.
posted by fire&wings at 10:04 AM on September 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


Of these, I would put HHG2G and Ghostbusters in my profile. GB is just such a classic movie. It really stands up as hilarious after all this time.
posted by adamdschneider at 10:04 AM on September 8, 2010


Stuff nobody likes probably includes "conditional probability", but as far as I can tell from their explanation, the large prominence of, say, Van Halen does not mean that, if you're a white guy, you're therefore likely to enjoysaid band's delightful whooping-and-strumming stylings. It means that if you do like Van Halen for some reason, then you're significantly more likely to be in the white guys group. That could be the case even if 2% of white guys like Van Halen and the other categories are just sane.
posted by Wolfdog at 10:05 AM on September 8, 2010 [13 favorites]


Also, cos = 'cause = because. Right?
posted by naju at 10:05 AM on September 8, 2010


You know who else likes the Red Sox?

Goebbels' descendants; despite his eternal candidacy for the American League team in the Midsummer Classic and flexibility in salary negotiations, the Yankees declined to include him in the official team photograph after the 1935 season, citing controversy over his recent performances.
posted by Inspector.Gadget at 10:05 AM on September 8, 2010


Ah. Thanks, brundlefly and Navelgazer.
posted by The Bellman at 10:05 AM on September 8, 2010


At least there's one thing we can all come together on, one thing that people from every race, from every nation, from every religion and creed, can stand together as one and agree upon:

We all hate OkCupid blog posts. Ugh.

Wolfdog: “With the data they have...”

I know you're joking, but I just wanted to say: they don't have any data. They'd just like us to think they do. That's why they post these silly, specious, pseudo-statistical ramblings about semi-controversial topics on their blog. 'Oh, look at these surprising findings we've gleaned from the single most self-selecting and prone-to-distortion population on the planet – an internet dating pool! Pay no attention to the fact that this data is less likely to be reliable than Loki on a Sunday morning; just ponder this data we're presenting, and ruminate comfortably on the fact that we're gonna help you fill that romantic void with our powerful science!'

Meh.
posted by koeselitz at 10:06 AM on September 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


I don't know if you noticed, koeslitz, but they have multicolor charts.
posted by Wolfdog at 10:07 AM on September 8, 2010 [27 favorites]


"Coz" isn't a "like," it's just a word. It's shorthand for "because."
posted by xigxag at 10:07 AM on September 8, 2010


Kenny fucking Chesney? Stupid fucking white people.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:09 AM on September 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


I look forward to a day when people of all races and genders like their toes.
posted by lore at 10:09 AM on September 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


Big Lebowski, now there's a surprise /rolls eyes/

and yet I'm "white" (last time I looked anyway) and it's the first thing on the list I actually like (other than maybe having golf on in the background when I'm hungover). Which leads to a deeper concern. What does it say about a man, regardless of the color of skin, that he can like both The Big Liebowski and the Eagles? I don't LOVE the Eagles, mind you. In fact, I find much of their discography tiring to the point of zombifying ... but every now and then something like this pops up, and I can't help but nod long ...

Because James Dean really was too cool for school. He was white too, wasn't he?
posted by philip-random at 10:12 AM on September 8, 2010


We all hate OkCupid blog posts. Ugh.

I'm not sure the data in this thread supports your conclusion.
posted by abc123xyzinfinity at 10:13 AM on September 8, 2010 [34 favorites]


No, I love to read. I'm reading this great book... perhaps you've heard of it? Bridges... of Madison County?
posted by Devils Rancher at 10:15 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


"'Oh, look at these surprising findings we've gleaned from the single most self-selecting and prone-to-distortion population on the planet"

You mean, other than market research surveys asking people how much they eat?
posted by MuffinMan at 10:16 AM on September 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


What does it say about a man, regardless of the color of skin, that he can like both The Big Liebowski and the Eagles?

Was that not a joke? The stereotypical "cab driver's music" that a passenger would (again, stereotypically) complain about would be something bizarre and unfamiliar to said passenger -- ethnic, urban, or what have you. So what the Coens deliver in this case was deliberately bland, inoffensive and familiar. By my read, legions of fans have misread this joke.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 10:16 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


empath: I don't get the objection. OKCupid is not a paid service, and these blog posts are fascinating.

I think the objection from some people at least starts from the fact that they're monstrous statistical fallacies leading to unsupported conclusions. As others have noted, OKCupid are a business selecting people based on a common interest through a medium that does a further selection for their sample. The 1936 Reader's Digest Poll is the classic example of how badly that can botch things up, and you learn that in the first 15 minutes of a stats class.

But I don't think that's the whole of it. Every time I see one of these up here, those who write the thing for OKCupid are aggressive and pretentious about being better than social science work with all its muddy conclusions and hedged bets. They (OKCupid) tell the REAL story about race and diet coke, the one that those candy-ass academics are afraid to tell. ("280 million words in total!" because more data=good data, and random samples of non-random samples somehow magically create random samples all the way down.) It has a pervasive air of epistemic egalitarianism, so it feels like talking to someone who is both wrong and sneering at you, and it keeps coming up on the blue.
posted by el_lupino at 10:17 AM on September 8, 2010 [14 favorites]


The religion & writing proficiency level was far, far more interesting for me.
posted by shakespeherian at 10:17 AM on September 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


I don't LOVE the Eagles, mind you. In fact, I find much of their discography tiring to the point of zombifying ... but every now and then something like this pops up, and I can't help but nod long ...

I'm a big Journey of the Sorceror fan. That's probably my HHG2G showing again, though.
posted by adamdschneider at 10:17 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Based on dating experience on OKC, I am amazed that the Dave Matthews Band did not make the list for white males.
posted by gyroscope at 10:19 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


As a black guy, this just killed my desire for white women.
posted by nomadicink at 10:19 AM on September 8, 2010 [11 favorites]


I thought it was a pretty funny and interesting post - I chuckled a few times. However, as an actual survey it's (obviously) useless, because "races" aren't monolithic. While there are probably some cultural similarities between people who self-identify as Asian-Korean and who self-identify as, say, Asian-Taiwanese, they're (duh!) pretty different.
posted by KokuRyu at 10:22 AM on September 8, 2010


OKCupid blog posts do not constitute professional statistical advice. Please consult a professional statistician before making generalizations.
posted by empath at 10:22 AM on September 8, 2010 [8 favorites]


And then the civil wars can begin.

I will be, as I have remained, a loyal subject of Red Sox Nation.

Even when they fucking suck so bad they end up seven wins and eight losses behind Tamba Bay

Also, I really liked the Kite Runner. Am I a Middle Eastern woman?
posted by thesmophoron at 10:26 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


By my read, legions of fans have misread this joke.

Take it easy, take it easy. Don't let the sound of your own wheels make you crazy.
posted by Devils Rancher at 10:30 AM on September 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


The average middle eastern guy likes Iran and Israel.
posted by Navelgazer at 10:31 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Can some asian ladies kindly explain to me what the fuck is coz?

I'm not an Asian ladies, but I'm 99.9% certain this is what they are referring to.
posted by dgaicun at 10:33 AM on September 8, 2010 [9 favorites]


"Is there a Comic Sans version of the Bible? There really should be. " Holy Moly.
posted by boo_radley at 10:33 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


I need to do more dating outside my racial group, because according to these charts white women appear to be total fucking hillbillies.
posted by ecurtz at 10:34 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


koeselitz, I might be missing something, but what makes loki any less reliable on a sunday morning?
posted by wayland at 10:35 AM on September 8, 2010


So what the Coens deliver in this case was deliberately bland, inoffensive and familiar. By my read, legions of fans have misread this joke.

It goes a little deeper than this for Leibowski. Witness the song that's playing in the background while Jesus does his thing. The man has Eagles hatred deep in his marrow.
posted by philip-random at 10:37 AM on September 8, 2010


I am apparently hispanic/latino and white...also half woman sometimes (mostly latinas).

This makes some odd sense: I am Puerto Rican so I have all the hispanicness down with some good old American influenced upbringing. I can make sense of the woman part because well, I grew up with a single mother.

Also: I love the OKCupid blog posts, but I just take it to be representative of OKCupid and their population, not the non-self-selecting rest of the country. Also, market surveys are generally not much better at good statistical process.
posted by lizarrd at 10:38 AM on September 8, 2010


I'm down to earth (will never be am astronaut :( and you could totally have a beer with me, because I like beer (esp a sweet English-style ale)

But I hate hockey and the Red Sox.

Seriously, what do watching sports have to do with a person being laid-back and appreciating malted barley drinks?
posted by jb at 10:38 AM on September 8, 2010


But it's not really "stuff white people like" it's "stuff white people mention liking that people of other races don't mention liking."

I thought that too, but the white women's list has mascara*, the black women's list has lip gloss, and the latina women's has both mascara and lip gloss. So now I'm confused.


*why on earth would you put mascara as a thing in your dating profile?
posted by oneirodynia at 10:39 AM on September 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


Witness the song that's playing in the background while Jesus does his thing.

Oh dude, you don't have to tell me. I have Gipsy Kings on my mp3 player and listened to that rendition on the bus into work this morning. But where you see hate I feel only love.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 10:41 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Oh, not for Lebowski of course.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 10:41 AM on September 8, 2010


Seeing merengue at the top of the Latino chart made me laugh. My people love to dance.

Why is it that only Asian men like Calvin and Hobbes?
posted by joedan at 10:43 AM on September 8, 2010


I think the objection from some people at least starts from the fact that they're monstrous statistical fallacies leading to unsupported conclusions

But in fairness to them, they never pretend they're anything more than a dating site, that what they show is based on anything more than dating profiles.

For what it is - a harmless, fluffy bit of analysis of information they have lying around as a means of soft marketing it strikes me as pretty clever.

Their analysis of profile photos, for example, is unquestionably interesting.
posted by MuffinMan at 10:43 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Is this the thread where we get to make prejudicial comments about other people and no one cares?
posted by Fleebnork at 10:44 AM on September 8, 2010


It's the complementary function to zin.

That's cuz.

Also, cos = 'cause = because. Right?

That makes no sense. "Because?"

What do you like?
Because.

I'm 99.9% certain this is what they are referring to.

That's Cos.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 10:45 AM on September 8, 2010


white women appear to be total fucking hillbillies

LEAVE JODI PICOULT ALONE
posted by everichon at 10:46 AM on September 8, 2010


I think much of the hate arises from a segment of the population who loathes any hint of people-based correlations which are not zero, unity, or negative one.
posted by adipocere at 10:48 AM on September 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


I need to do more dating outside my racial group, because according to these charts white women appear to be total fucking hillbillies.

One thing to remember is that these are all the outliers, so the things in the white women list are culturally specific to white women. The "normal" things that everyone mentions across racial boundaries are not included. I think this is probably more skewed for white people because white culture is the dominant culture that everyone in the US assimilates into to some extent, so many of culturally-specific white people things are actually specific to certain white subcultures (like white southerners) rather than white people in general.
posted by burnmp3s at 10:48 AM on September 8, 2010 [5 favorites]


That makes no sense. "Because?"

What do you like?
Because.


Nah, it's just a straight parse of text coming from that part of the profile. So if a girl says "Lip balm coz I get chapped like crazy!" then "coz" is counted.
posted by naju at 10:49 AM on September 8, 2010


Nah, it's just a straight parse of text coming from that part of the profile. So if a girl says "Lip balm coz I get chapped like crazy!" then "coz" is counted.

Still raises the question: why so high for Asian women, when no other words/phrases like that appear to have charted that high for any other race/sex combo?
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 10:52 AM on September 8, 2010


the mind of the white man is [...] sweaty guitar rock, bro-on-bro comedies, things with engines, and dystopias.

Sounds about right. Also sex, but I think that goes without saying on a dating site.
posted by Kadin2048 at 10:52 AM on September 8, 2010


white culture is the dominant culture that everyone in the US assimilates into to some extent

What is "white culture?"
posted by The World Famous at 10:56 AM on September 8, 2010


That's Cos.

Not in the hizood, hizomie.

*Cough* *Cough*
posted by dgaicun at 10:58 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Isn't there a whole reverse-survivor bias going on here? The people on OKCupid can't get dates or find mates by definition. So basically everything that these people like you should avoid like the plague.
posted by GuyZero at 10:58 AM on September 8, 2010 [9 favorites]


What is "white culture?" This.

Excuse my spelling
posted by MuffinMan at 10:59 AM on September 8, 2010


What is "white culture?"

The one where people lug around their invisible backpacks while denying they're doing so.
posted by GuyZero at 10:59 AM on September 8, 2010 [6 favorites]


I don't really know, but does 'cos' refer to cosplay [wikipedia]?
posted by mbatch at 10:59 AM on September 8, 2010


philip-random: “I don't LOVE the Eagles, mind you. In fact, I find much of their discography tiring to the point of zombifying ... but every now and then something like this pops up, and I can't help but nod long ...”

No, you... you're not getting it here. I know, it's hard to stare at the Eagles for more than thirty seconds at a time without being struck bland, but there's a very simple principle at work here:

Don Henley is the devil. He's the incarnation of rubber-limbed, pudding-spirited lite rock, a man whose unique gift is an uncanny ability to craft records that are statistically likely to be hits because he has a copy of Newsweek where his soul should be.

Joe Walsh is not so bad. In fact, there are days when Joe Walsh is damned fun to listen to. He's sort of wishy-washy, and he obviously didn't have that drive or determination that led other people in the 70s to have their own groups and become superstars in their own right, but he's a great guitar player, and he has the capacity at times to make a song enjoyable.

So whenever you find yourself enjoying an Eagles song, reflect for a few moments, and you'll notice this principle at work. You'll realize that you're not actually enjoying the Eagles. You're enjoying Joe Walsh. Which is just fine, in my book; a lot of his solos and riffs and stuff for them were fun. It's just that when you pull back and pay close attention to the songwriting, at least half of the vocals, and the general timbre of the music, you're listening to music that's in the service of fantastic evil. That fantastic evil being Don Henley's solo career.
posted by koeselitz at 11:04 AM on September 8, 2010 [11 favorites]


Yogurt is a white culture.
posted by everichon at 11:04 AM on September 8, 2010 [14 favorites]


Why is it that only Asian men like Calvin and Hobbes?

Because we have excellent taste.

-- Comrade "Actually happens to be an engineer" Robot.
posted by Comrade_robot at 11:06 AM on September 8, 2010


You know what stuff White people like? Lists about "Stuff White People Like".
posted by Liquidwolf at 11:06 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Yogurt is a white culture.

Does Obama hate it?
posted by The World Famous at 11:06 AM on September 8, 2010


What is "white culture?"

Plain yogurt.
posted by shakespeherian at 11:07 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Yogurt is a white culture.

So is strep!
posted by StopMakingSense at 11:07 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


How dare you ignore the Frey. And... that other guy.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 11:07 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Latinos like Of Mine and Men? Asian dudes like LA Confidential? I mean, I do too, but what would skew these racially?

I was wondering about that too. Could be less of a racial thing and more of a "more likely to be Californian" thing, as both stories are set in California. (Also, I don't know if it applies to those two books/films, but seems like media that are polarizing along gender lines are more likely to show up on all of the lists, just because they are analyzing men and women separately. If they had a single bucket for "white people" or "black people" or whatever there would probably be a lot fewer romances and war movies on those lists. That may in part account for why a crime movie like LA Confidential shows up.)
posted by phoenixy at 11:13 AM on September 8, 2010


And apparently Indian men like "idiots"? Uhh..
posted by knile at 11:14 AM on September 8, 2010


So whenever you find yourself enjoying an Eagles song, reflect for a few moments, and you'll notice this principle at work. You'll realize that you're not actually enjoying the Eagles. You're enjoying Joe Walsh.

koeselitz, thanks for sharing but Joe Walsh wasn't part of the band when they recorded James Dean, or for that particular performance. He also wasn't part of the band for Journey of the Sorceror, which should ring a little familiar for Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy fans.

Sadly, we can't just write the Eagles off so easily. More evidence that the Devil is involved.
posted by philip-random at 11:17 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


wayland: “koeselitz, I might be missing something, but what makes loki any less reliable on a sunday morning?”

You try getting him to mow the goddamned lawn. That guy has more excuses than Sleipnir has shoes.
posted by koeselitz at 11:18 AM on September 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


Oh, don't get me started on my fellow Indian men. Ayn Rand? Really? And "exams", "maths" and "soft rock" probably won't get you too far on a dating site, guys....
posted by naju at 11:19 AM on September 8, 2010


Sharks don't attack the Irish. It's mostly Australians.
posted by The World Famous at 11:19 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


And..."maths"...probably won't get you too far on a dating site, guys....

Are they going for quantity or quality?
posted by DU at 11:21 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


I don't know what to say about this list, except that it gives me hope that my Irish band might find an audience.

An all white audience of men who like the Dropkick Murphy's and women who like Ireland, but, then, what was I expecting?
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:26 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


I enjoyed Shipping Up to Boston as much as anyone who watched the Departed, but everything else I have ever heard by the Dropkick Murphys sounded all alike, and it was all pretty boring.
posted by adamdschneider at 11:30 AM on September 8, 2010


he has a copy of Newsweek where his soul should be

We need the ability to favorite specific phrases.
posted by lore at 11:31 AM on September 8, 2010 [9 favorites]


The phrases included in the black boxes are the top 50 phrases most statistically correlated to that group. We calculated this as follows:

1. We calculated the frequency of every 1, 2, and 3 word phrase for the whole population.
2. We calculated those same frequencies within each race/gender pair.
3. For each phrase, we divided #2 by #1.
4. This is the propensity of a given group to use a given phrase.
5. The list you see is the phrases with the 50 highest ratios of #2/#1.


Bad Math: #2/ Number of total profiles within each group is the propensity ie stuff white people like (No one likes football, really? Really?). #2/#1 is the ratio of use within a group to usage outside. So this is stuff white people like that if all the other groups by in large only care a little about. I also feel like the missed some opportunities. what is #1/#2 what do people in general like that individual races don't care about. What do the college educated care about?
posted by Rubbstone at 11:31 AM on September 8, 2010


American White People. It's quite important to note that there are people elsewhere.

This isn't about American White People at all - it's about people who use one specific dating service. They're probably mostly american, but they don't represent all americans.

Not to mention, that method was pretty silly - did they even cover for the possibility that some of these people were writing "I hate Tom Clancy"?
posted by mdn at 11:32 AM on September 8, 2010


well, let's see, I don't like that, I don't like that, I certainly have no interest in that, that's not on my list, no, no, no, wow, I really don't see how I can be so different from WOO ZAPPA YEAH WOO tom clancy? really? no, no, no...
posted by davejay at 11:38 AM on September 8, 2010


It's also amazing the extent to which their list shows a pastoral or rural self-mythology: bonfires, boating, horseback riding, thunderstorms. I remind you that OkCupid's user base is almost all in large cities, where to one degree or another, if you find yourself doing much of any of these things, civilization has come to an end.

Okay, that's pretty funny.
posted by davejay at 11:39 AM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Apparently I am Asian.
posted by Jimmy Havok at 11:47 AM on September 8, 2010


Average White Man
Eats: "Grilling" and "brew"
Reads: Tom Clancy, Robert Heinlein,
Watches: Ghost Busters, Big Lebowski, Groundhog Day
Listens to: Phish, Soundgarden, NOFX
Drives: Harley Davidson, Jeep, a boat

So the average white man is a cross between an outdoorsy cowboy and a 30-something nerd-turned-hipster?

I've never liked hipster cowboys. It's not surprising they have trouble with the ladies.
posted by nickrussell at 11:50 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


No one likes football, really?

Maybe I'm misunderstanding their presentation. Aren't they saying that no one race/national origin group, when trying to attract a romantic partner on OKCupid, announces their like of football more frequently than other such groups? In other words, that it's not that white men like Van Halen but don't like football - it's that only white men think that announcing enthusiasm for Van Halen is an effective dating strategy. But I didn't read the article closely and I haven't really thought about their statistical methodology at all.
posted by The World Famous at 11:51 AM on September 8, 2010


Drives: Harley Davidson, Jeep, a boat

I think this is the best example, actually. It's not that the average white guy drives a Harley, a Jeep, or a boat. It's that the average white, male, Harley, Jeep, or boat owner is more likely to mention his ownership of those particular items on a dating site. He thinks chicks dig his Harley, Jeep, or boat (and that's probably why he bought it in the first place).
posted by The World Famous at 11:53 AM on September 8, 2010


I have to tell you, seeing Tom Clancy at the top of the list made my day. Wonder if I can get a print of that for the office.
posted by yerfatma at 11:58 AM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


boo_radley: ""Is there a Comic Sans version of the Bible? There really should be. " Holy Moly."

Yeah, I thought that was a really ballsy thing to say. Then again, maybe Protestants won't understand the line between Comic Sans and idiocy/incompetence, or something.
posted by graventy at 12:01 PM on September 8, 2010


Would you like to come up and see my etchings of my Harley, my Jeep, and my boat?
posted by everichon at 12:02 PM on September 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


Mayor Curley: "White women don't actually like the Red Sox as much as the stats indicate. OK Cupid has a large presence in Boston, so that skews it. This combines with the fact that oftentimes saying "I like the Red Sox" is code for "I'm really down to earth and you could totally have a beer with me." It's the modern New England equivalent of the "long walks on the beach" cliche."

This. Outside of Boston, this phenomenon is frequently manifested as liking "college football" or going out of your way to ensure your profile picture includes you wearing a baseball cap with a stadium in the background. I'm not saying women don't / shouldn't like sports, I am saying the number of women who prominently discuss a love of sports is way over-representative of the proportion of the general population, men and women, who like sports.

Also, travel. Stop talking about all the places you've been or, even worse, all the places you want to go to, that thanks to your enormous wealth and privilege you can pull off. Paris is just another bullshit town.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 12:10 PM on September 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


Average White Man
Eats: "Grilling" and "brew"
Reads: Tom Clancy, Robert Heinlein,
Watches: Ghost Busters, Big Lebowski, Groundhog Day
Listens to: Phish, Soundgarden, NOFX
Drives: Harley Davidson, Jeep, a boat

So the average white man is a cross between an outdoorsy cowboy and a 30-something nerd-turned-hipster?


What in the name of God do you see in that list that makes you think 'hipster'?
posted by shakespeherian at 12:16 PM on September 8, 2010 [6 favorites]


No, l33tpolicywonk. "Love of travel" may be just another poseur category, or it may mean they won't settle for your week all-inclusive resort holiday as a replacement for actually seeing the world.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 12:19 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


I wish they'd been able to break down Protestantism into Mainline and Evangelical.
posted by orthogonality at 12:21 PM on September 8, 2010


I like Diet Coke.
posted by caddis at 12:25 PM on September 8, 2010


and pancakes.....
posted by caddis at 12:25 PM on September 8, 2010


I met my wife on okcupid, but don't have any interest in Tom Clancy or golf. I kept my Van Halen love to myself.
posted by drezdn at 12:27 PM on September 8, 2010


Maybe I'm misunderstanding their presentation. Aren't they saying that no one race/national origin group, when trying to attract a romantic partner on OKCupid, announces their like of football more frequently than other such groups? In other words, that it's not that white men like Van Halen but don't like football - it's that only white men think that announcing enthusiasm for Van Halen is an effective dating strategy. But I didn't read the article closely and I haven't really thought about their statistical methodology at all.

Yes, but still is not a statistical analysis of stuff white people like. It is however, interesting in its own right. Its is a differential analysis of what people put in their profiles accross races .They do however have the tools to do an analysis of stuff white people like. I for one would like to see it
posted by Rubbstone at 12:28 PM on September 8, 2010


Huh, how did I miss Zappa? Yeah, I'd put that on my list, too.

Also: we don't have thunderstorms in the city, huh?
posted by adamdschneider at 12:35 PM on September 8, 2010


They do however have the tools to do an analysis of stuff white people like.

Really? How? How is their dataset not limited to stuff white people say they like when attempting to get a date on OKCupid?
posted by The World Famous at 12:38 PM on September 8, 2010


Bad Math: #2/ Number of total profiles within each group is the propensity ie stuff white people like (No one likes football, really? Really?). #2/#1 is the ratio of use within a group to usage outside.

Exactly. Like Wolfdog mentioned earlier, what they're actually measuring is the probability that a person is white based on liking a particular thing. Let's do the math:

If L is the event that a randomly chosen person from the general population likes a particular thing, and W is the event that the chosen person is white, then P(W|L), the conditional probability of being white given that you like that thing, is P(L and W)/P(L). What they're saying (I think) is that they picked out the words/phrases with the highest ratio of P(L and W)/P(L); that's your #2/#1.

The problem with this approach is that it's very sensitive to events that have a low P(L). So for example, if I put on my profile that my favorite movie is "Manos: The Hands of Fate" and I'm the only one, then since I'm white, that would show up as having the highest possible conditional probability of being white, that is, 1. But that doesn't mean that other white people like that movie or that it's a bona fide "white thing." I guess it's just a question of definitions--what do we mean when we say "Stuff that white people like?"--but my sense from reading the original SWPL blog is that those are trends that are simultaneously popular among white people (high P(L|W)) and highly specific to white people (high P(W|L)).
posted by albrecht at 12:41 PM on September 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


The people on OKCupid can't get dates or find mates by definition.

in this day and age, can we really still make the assumption that someone who dates online is somhow unlucky in love in "real" life? Among my single peers (thirty-something, creative types) online dating is just one prong of a multi-faceted boning agenda. In my experience, it's less to do with desperation, and more to do with personality type. Some people take to it, some people don't. Shy people are shy , players are players, online or in person.
posted by billyfleetwood at 12:42 PM on September 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


The only linked interest in my profile is under where they ask you what you spend your time thinking about:

"Metacognition"

I recently added a "ha ha, get it" line because I don't think people were fucking getting it.

(I also added a line about how deadly serious I am, because it's totally what I majored in in college.)
posted by Eideteker at 12:48 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Apparently I'm an Asian woman.
posted by Jimmy Havok at 12:54 PM on September 8, 2010


I tried to do some of my own research but apparently mere mortals can't do exact match phrase searches like "Of Mice and Men."
posted by smackfu at 1:01 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


White people, you and I are so alike in so many ways but I'll never understand The Big Lebowski.
posted by cazoo at 1:13 PM on September 8, 2010


if I were a guy I'd totally date indian women. of course, if I were a guy, I probably not get all gushy when they mention Jane Austen.
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 1:15 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Really? How? How is their dataset not limited to stuff white people say they like when attempting to get a date on OKCupid?

Honestly I suppose you right if people are that cynical and desperate sycophants who lie about their interests on OKCupid and that the results are skewed radically because of that. I suppose that would make the data somewhat sketchy. I didn't have plans on submitting this data to a peer reviewed journal. So who cares?
posted by Rubbstone at 1:21 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


cazoo, The Big Lebowski makes being white-ish tolerable.
posted by Mister_A at 1:21 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


if people are that cynical and desperate sycophants who lie about their interests on OKCupid

I don't think people have to be cynical and desperate sycophants to be selective about which of their likes and dislikes they mention on a dating site. For example, it is an undisputable scientific fact that every human being secretly loves ABBA. Yet it is not common for men to mention that on their internet profile.
posted by The World Famous at 1:25 PM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Am I the only one who finds dating sites to be more than a little soul crushing?
posted by Relay at 1:30 PM on September 8, 2010


Am I the only one who finds dating sites to be more than a little soul crushing?

There are over 6 billion people in the world. One of them is probably a special snowflake like you.
posted by nomadicink at 1:31 PM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Ideal Impulse: As an aside, Soul Food is not only the name of a food, but also a TV show and a movie, which maybe explain its enourmous popularity among black people's profiles; a reference to any of these would count as one.

Yeah, as I was going to say, the folks at OK Cupid are so white, they wouldn't realize this.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 1:32 PM on September 8, 2010


In case you were wondering what el_lupino was talking about: The 1936 Literary Digest Poll
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 1:44 PM on September 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


I think the women who like the Red Sox actually think they are referring to red socks.
posted by Faze at 1:45 PM on September 8, 2010


Asian women like:
tuesday's with morrie
A: They have a sample size problem.
B: Hmmm....
posted by Chuckles at 1:47 PM on September 8, 2010


In case you were wondering what el_lupino was talking about: The 1936 Literary Digest Poll

Dammit. Yes. Right. But now that I've made that same mistake for the 3,728th time, it should be fixed for good.
posted by el_lupino at 2:01 PM on September 8, 2010


tuesday's with morrie

Even ignoring the punctuation issues, GOD what a terrible book. I was forced to read it for freshman high school English and it was just so, so sappy and awful. But! At long last! It's done something that not completely contrived and predictable! It's... combating the stereotype that Asians are smart! Wooie, that Mitch Albom sure is inadvertently subversive.

Or does the Asian intelligence stereotype only apply to math and science-y things...?
posted by randomname25 at 2:11 PM on September 8, 2010


White really IS the absence of color!
posted by Ron Thanagar at 2:25 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Stuff nobody likes probably includes "conditional probability"

I like conditional probability.
posted by grouse at 2:30 PM on September 8, 2010


I still don't understand what cos is.
<--- asian girl

I've never spelled the shorthand for "because" like that. I'd write 'cause if anything. But maybe I'm old.
posted by like_neon at 2:40 PM on September 8, 2010


"Multi-Faceted Boning Agenda" is going to be the name of my first child.
posted by griphus at 2:41 PM on September 8, 2010


I think if I ever have occasion to be on a dating site, I will take multiple pictures of myself in front of vehicles. I'll start with a car or a motorcycle, then a boat, then a 747, then a tank, and just ramp up the stupidity to see if anyone realizes I'm not being sincere.
posted by davejay at 2:46 PM on September 8, 2010


I would just go straight to Nimitz class aircraft carrier.
posted by Artw at 2:48 PM on September 8, 2010


davejay - Culminating with a Saturn V rocket!
posted by Ron Thanagar at 2:49 PM on September 8, 2010


Ooh, nice one.
posted by Artw at 2:50 PM on September 8, 2010


Durn Bronzefist: "No, l33tpolicywonk. "Love of travel" may be just another poseur category, or it may mean they won't settle for your week all-inclusive resort holiday as a replacement for actually seeing the world."

Fascinating that you jump to the assumption that my identity is based in any kind of travel, as opposed to the place I live and the things I do normally.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 2:50 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


[source: 526K profiles on OkCupid.com]

That's under all of 'em. I'd really like to see a breakdown of the numbers, but there doesn't seem to be any raw data anywhere.

We selected 526,000 OkCupid users at random and divided them into groups by their (self-stated) race. We then took all these people's profile essays (280 million words in total!) and isolated the words and phrases that made each racial group's essays statistically distinct from the others'.

For instance, it turns out that all kinds of people list sushi as one of their favorite foods. But Asians are the only group who also list sashimi; it's a racial outlier. Similarly, as we shall see, black people are 20 times more likely than everyone else to mention soul food, whereas no foods are distinct for white people, unless you count diet coke.


So, basically, it's Stuff White People Say They Like That People of Other Races Don't Say They Like. That's kind of gross. It's like they saw that the raw lists were too similar, so they tweaked the process to make them as divisive and stereotypical as possible. And again, no raw numbers, so it's impossible to know how many participants listed, e.g., Red Sox.

And since they picked the 526,000 subjects at random, rather than picking an equal number of random subjects for each group, the results are going to be significantly less accurate for the less populous groups than for the more populous ones.

So, essentially, this is a big steaming pile o' nothing.
posted by Sys Rq at 2:53 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Really? How? How is their dataset not limited to stuff white people say they like when attempting to get a date on OKCupid?

Okay, consider this: this is a list of what the majority of members of each sex/race will put on their profile believing it will be most likely to attract a partner.

So from that perspective, either (for example) white men believe saying they like The Big Lebowski will get them a partner (that seems...unlikely) or white men say they like The Big Lebowski because they do. I'm likely to believe the latter.
posted by davejay at 3:06 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'm a white male and I hate Tom Clancy, Van Halen, Harley Davidson, Phish, The Big Lebowski, Soundgarden, nascar and Robert Henlein... to name but a few on the list.

Maybe this is why I am not getting many hits on my OK Cupid page?
posted by Rashomon at 3:06 PM on September 8, 2010


davejay - Culminating with a Saturn V rocket!

Nah, nude photos probably aren't allowed.

thank you im here all nite
posted by davejay at 3:06 PM on September 8, 2010


Fascinating that you jump to the assumption that my identity is based in any kind of travel, as opposed to the place I live and the things I do normally.

"You" was meant in a generic sense, but if "normally" automatically excludes travel for you, maybe you underestimate the amount of travelling some folks do, or the central place it takes in their expenditure both of money and time. I know a few people for whom everything but travel is "in the meantime". If that's not central to their identity, I don't know what is. What I object to is the automatic assumption that "everybody travels and everybody likes travel" as if they must be referring to their January week in Cancun.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 3:08 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


If I've misread your comment as emblematic of others I've seen on MeFi on this subject, that's on me, of course.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 3:10 PM on September 8, 2010


Look, I know this is a contentious issue at a contentious time. But the real elephant in the room is clearly the connection between Middle Eastern men and Nickelback.
posted by ErikaB at 3:17 PM on September 8, 2010


Almost everyone says they like travel.
posted by adamdschneider at 3:20 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Oh my. Stuff Middle Eastern women want:

DIFFERENT CULTURES.

I guess there's a selection bias, that if you're okay with things you probably have little business having a profile on Ok Cupid.
posted by pwnguin at 3:21 PM on September 8, 2010


Almost everyone says they like travel.

*sigh* Moving right along...
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 3:22 PM on September 8, 2010


Re: Tuesdays With Morrie, Of Mice and Men, etc.

If there's one thing I've learned interviewing people for entry-level jobs at the public library, it's that many people who are not necessarily big readers will, when asked to pick a favorite book, name something they had to read in school.
posted by box at 3:50 PM on September 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


So from that perspective, either (for example) white men believe saying they like The Big Lebowski will get them a partner (that seems...unlikely) or white men say they like The Big Lebowski because they do. I'm likely to believe the latter.

There are more possibilities than that, including, but not limited to, that some white men, but not men of other races, who post profiles on OKCupid, either like the Big Lebowski and think that mentioning it will improve their success on the site or merely say that they like it for that same reason.

But "white men say they like the Big Lebowski because they do" is not a conclusion supported by the article. Indeed, "white men say they like The Big Lebowski" is not supported by the article. What is supported, as I understand it, is "self-identifying white men who post profiles on OKCupid say they like The Big Lebowski with far greater frequency than non-white men who post profiles on OKCupid do."
posted by The World Famous at 3:59 PM on September 8, 2010


What is "white culture?"

The one where people lug around their invisible backpacks while denying they're doing so.


You know how to score points on Metafilter!
posted by John Cohen at 4:06 PM on September 8, 2010 [6 favorites]


The people on OKCupid can't get dates or find mates by definition.

Then how do you explain all those profiles that go from "single" to "seeing someone"?
posted by John Cohen at 4:09 PM on September 8, 2010


Really? How? How is their dataset not limited to stuff white people say they like when attempting to get a date on OKCupid?

Okay, consider this: this is a list of what the majority of members of each sex/race will put on their profile believing it will be most likely to attract a partner.

So from that perspective, either (for example) white men believe saying they like The Big Lebowski will get them a partner (that seems...unlikely) or white men say they like The Big Lebowski because they do. I'm likely to believe the latter.


I agree with you on the "Big Lebowski" example. That's not as clear with some of the others, e.g. "tall dark and handsome." When it comes to things like movies and singers, few people will claim to like a movie when they really hated it. But many people will choose to mention that they like movie A and not mention they like movie B. So it's still skewed even if no one ever falsely claims to like a movie/singer/whatever.
posted by John Cohen at 4:14 PM on September 8, 2010


No wonder I write so well; I'm a half-assed Buddhist.
posted by desjardins at 4:15 PM on September 8, 2010


I'm a half-assed Buddhist.

Does that mean you sit crooked in the Lotus position?
posted by The World Famous at 4:29 PM on September 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


They list The Big Lebowski not because they think all women will see their love of TBL and swoon, but because they want to date the sort of women who date men who like TBL.
posted by joannemerriam at 4:31 PM on September 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


Well, travel is sort of like the discussion of sports fandom upthread, isn't it? Some people are really really into it, and some people just talk about it to project a certain image of themselves. Although also like with sports, even people who are honestly very into it can still be totally annoying sometimes.
posted by naoko at 4:32 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


We selected 526,000 OkCupid users at random and divided them into groups by their (self-stated) race. We then took all these people's profile essays (280 million words in total!) and isolated the words and phrases that made each racial group's essays statistically distinct from the others'.

If their method is constructed to defy overlap, then how does Alicia Keys show up for three or four different ethnic groups?
posted by dgaicun at 4:39 PM on September 8, 2010


Wait a minute. Tom Clancy? Harleys? Golf?

Are most of the men on OkCupid old guys with beer guts and t-shirts that say "FISH FEAR UNCA GOOMPA"?
posted by dunkadunc at 4:56 PM on September 8, 2010


they want to date the sort of women who date men who like TBL.

Hey! Stay away from my woman!

(We saw a quick clip from TBL the other evening, and she said, "It's been too long since we watched that...")
posted by Jimmy Havok at 5:58 PM on September 8, 2010


Okay, consider this: this is a list of what the majority of members of each sex/race will put on their profile believing it will be most likely to attract a partner.

No, no, no. This is a list of things that are more common among one sex/race than any other.

If 4% of white males put Van Halen in their profiles and .002% of everybody else has Van Halen in their profiles, then Van Halen is on the White Male list. But (in that example) the vast majority of white males do not list Van Halen in their profiles.
posted by straight at 6:07 PM on September 8, 2010


What this shows, to my mind, is how much people really do stereotype themselves, even when they're given completely free rein re: what they type into a text box. I remember noticing these sorts of patterns browsing people's music libraries back in college, and they're still glaringly evident just clicking through Facebook (or, apparently, OkCupid)—people all too often tend to publicly express a love of the things they think they're supposed to love, being x age, y race, and z gender, rather than exploring and developing tastes of their own. Reading through the original blog post, plus the anecdotal lists in this thread, is fascinating.
posted by limeonaire at 7:14 PM on September 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


They list The Big Lebowski not because they think all women will see their love of TBL and swoon, but because they want to date the sort of women who date men who like TBL.

No, we need to go deeper.

P R E D I L E C T I O N
posted by empath at 7:26 PM on September 8, 2010


These are more fun if you pretend some words and phrases that happened to be side-by-side are sentence fragments from actual profiles.

I'm an Asian male pursuing my investing gladiator...

I'm an Indian male. U are trading serendipity tennis, Ayn Rand.
posted by mreleganza at 7:55 PM on September 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


Ok, I absolute love sashimi, soul food, diet Coke, pho... what does that make me?
Oh. Fat. Right.
Carry on, then.
posted by Leta at 9:14 PM on September 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


There are more possibilities than that, including, but not limited to...

Gah. Sometimes I forget: never oversimplify on MetaFilter.
posted by davejay at 9:59 PM on September 8, 2010


P R E D I L E C T I O N

Oh, hey Reddit!
posted by adamdschneider at 10:04 PM on September 8, 2010


I found it somewhat poignant that women of Middle Eastern origin claimed an interest in 'different cultures'.
posted by Busy Old Fool at 1:21 AM on September 9, 2010


Alicia fucking Keys sounds good to me.

But I'm stuck with Van fucking Halen and diet coke. Pff.
posted by Harry at 1:38 AM on September 9, 2010


Durn Bronzefist: "What I object to is the automatic assumption that "everybody travels and everybody likes travel" as if they must be referring to their January week in Cancun."

I do too, and I particularly object to how much time and attention travel gets on dating sites because, quite frankly, the ability to travel is explicitly a sign of privilege. Additionally, it doesn't demonstrate a great deal of savvy to me that you like to travel for travel's sake, rather than going to a particular place because you like the people or the environment there or (even better), actually moving and living in that place because you like it so much.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 6:37 AM on September 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


people all too often tend to publicly express a love of the things they think they're supposed to love, being x age, y race, and z gender, rather than exploring and developing tastes of their own.

Or maybe people just do love the popular stuff, as much as it pains people who like more esoteric stuff. People aren't "faking" liking all those crummy bands when they sell out concerts.
posted by smackfu at 6:59 AM on September 9, 2010


thunderstorms. .... if you find yourself doing much of any of these things, civilization has come to an end.

A thunderstorm in a city means the world is coming to an end? Wimps. I guess I was too much of a hillbilly white chick for OKCupid!
posted by Kurichina at 7:41 AM on September 9, 2010


online dating is just one prong of a multi-faceted boning agenda

CARRY ON?!?
posted by thsmchnekllsfascists at 7:50 AM on September 9, 2010


I do too, and I particularly object to how much time and attention travel gets on dating sites because, quite frankly, the ability to travel is explicitly a sign of privilege.

Of course it is. So are the myriad leisure pursuits people list on their profiles. Or cut to the chase: people are asked to list (even if they do not) their incomes directly. And of course it can cut both ways. I hope to work out a pay-averaging scheme where I earn less but have more time. That's a "privilege", too, but is also a major compatibility stickler for someone who would rather have a higher household income.

I agree that "I like to travel", absent further detail, is a bit of a meaningless statement, but it's because further detail is needed, not because it can't indicate a very different set of priorities. Many of my good friends are foreign service officers. If you think everyone who says "I love to travel" would find a compatible life in that rootless world as their partners, you'd be wrong. It's in many ways a tough life. But it's what they love.

So I think your complaint has some validity for reasons other than you indicate; what you've stated seems as facile as the statement usually is, indicating a very limited view of travel and living arrangements to accomodate it.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 8:27 AM on September 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


I don't really think it is that meaningless, unless people are lying about it. I would tend to think that people who really like to travel aren't particularly compatible with people who really don't like to travel.

There is also the difference between "I like to travel" and "I do travel". I know a lot more people in the first category who aren't exactly privileged.
posted by smackfu at 8:39 AM on September 9, 2010


That's true, smackfu. It seems on first blush like something that everyone says because they're supposed to, but in a world where grown adults admit "I don't like vegetables", I would expect those who actually don't like to travel to be able to self-disclose that nugget of info.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 8:49 AM on September 9, 2010


I enjoy offensive goaltending.
posted by Sys Rq at 8:49 AM on September 9, 2010


People who say they like Van Halen are not lying. The liars are the ones who say they don't like Van Halen.
posted by The World Famous at 8:58 AM on September 9, 2010


I have to say, calling her Alicia Fucking Keys kinda grows on ya.
posted by dry white toast at 9:00 AM on September 9, 2010


People who say they like Van Halen are not lying. The liars are the ones who say they don't like Van Halen.

This is really only true if one does not consider post-Diamond Dave Van Halen to be Van Halen.

Which is to say, it is true.
posted by Sys Rq at 9:01 AM on September 9, 2010




I've had Me Wise Magic stuck in my head for a couple days now. :-|
posted by adamdschneider at 9:09 AM on September 9, 2010


This is really only true if one does not consider post-Diamond Dave Van Halen to be Van Halen.

I agree, but only with the additional stipulation that 99% of the people who say they prefer pre-Hagar Van Halen would at the very least reconsider their position if they had a clear memory or understanding of just how vicariously-embarassing (to say the least) David Lee Roth was as a frontman. Roth was a better frontman as long as you didn't have to see him. And I realize that's saying something given that I'm comparing him to Sammy "muscle pants" Hagar.
posted by The World Famous at 9:10 AM on September 9, 2010


Durn Bronzefist: "Many of my good friends are foreign service officers. If you think everyone who says "I love to travel" would find a compatible life in that rootless world as their partners, you'd be wrong. It's in many ways a tough life. But it's what they love."

There's a world of difference between "I'm a Foreign Service Officer and I really like my job" and "I love to travel." It's the rough equivalent to the exception I made upthread for "I like this place, so I moved there" - it means, roughly, "the thing I like, I'm doing most of the time." Arbitrarily declaring your love for travel or declaring your love for travel and listing 20 different places you've been (which is the equivalent of saying you like traveling everywhere), is broadcasting "the thing I like most is being someplace other than here, and I spend the rest of the time making money doing something I hate and watching TV so I can go." That looks a lot closer to the people you describe who like going on vacation because beaches and tropical drinks are fun.

In short, I think we've got a lot of common ground here: if you like a particular place that's not where you are, you should move there. If you like Job X, which inherently involves lots of travel, you should do Job X. If you like travel because you don't particularly like working or responsibility, then you should come to grips with the fact that life has those consequences. Exceptions to the latter freely given to those who work genuinely depersonalizing jobs, who don't make enough money to travel in the first place.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 9:26 AM on September 9, 2010


That's ridiculous l33tpolicywonk. People live in places and work jobs for a host of complex reasons. You seem to have the mistaken idea that there is a right way and a wrong way to do either of those things. Beyond doing what works for each of us individually, there is no right and wrong way to live and work.
posted by jph at 9:33 AM on September 9, 2010


So it's wrong to like to travel?
posted by smackfu at 9:36 AM on September 9, 2010


I guess I just disagree with this bit: "the thing I like most is being someplace other than here, and I spend the rest of the time making money doing something I hate and watching TV so I can go". You can like visiting new places AND like where you live more AND like your life.
posted by smackfu at 9:38 AM on September 9, 2010


I hate Van Halen. You're a liar.
posted by philip-random at 9:43 AM on September 9, 2010


Again, it seems to be a very limited view of travel that can lead you to a conclusion that it "doesn't demonstrate a great deal of savvy to me that you like to travel for travel's sake, rather than going to a particular place because you like the people or the environment there".

It kind of reminds me of the MeFite who scoffed at ethnic identity in a multicultural, colonial country. Of course, did they eat ethnic food, celebrate ethnic holidays, attend ethnically-influenced religious ceremonies, speak the language? No. None of that. So of course from their point of view such an identity is pointless.

Your POV seems to permit Accidental Tourist-type travel and Moving There, with nothing in between. Learn the language? Try the food? Stay with the locals? There's a whole lot more to travel than finding that one other place you like and moving there. I've done both, and for various reasons I prefer living in my native land and working toward increasingly lengthy forays abroad. There's absolutely no reason to think that a love of travel rather than a love of a particular place is not valid, except for some misplaced snobbery, which your side-trip into "privilege" seems to suggest.

The issue at hand for those seeking mates is compatibility. Even two people who genuinely love to travel may have very different, and incompatible, preferences as to how to go about it.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 9:49 AM on September 9, 2010


"I love to travel! I take a cruise every year!"
posted by smackfu at 9:54 AM on September 9, 2010


There's no way I'd claim that's not a love of travel. It just wouldn't be compatible with mine.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 10:14 AM on September 9, 2010


Yeah, that was my point.
posted by smackfu at 10:16 AM on September 9, 2010


This is really only true if one does not consider post-Diamond Dave Van Halen to be Van Halen.

Van Halen: 1-6 Sean Connery; 7-10 Roger Moore; 11 George Lazenby.
posted by straight at 10:21 AM on September 9, 2010


I found it somewhat poignant that women of Middle Eastern origin claimed an interest in 'different cultures'.

Looking at that list, I'm guessing that the middle-eastern female contingent is more strongly Israeli than the male contingent. I wonder why that could be.
posted by acb at 11:27 AM on September 9, 2010


Van Halen: 1-6 Sean Connery; 7-10 Roger Moore; 11 George Lazenby.

It's a cute comparison. But I don't think anyone can, in good concience, compare David Lee Roth to Sean Connery unless they're ignorant of what David Lee Roth was actually like in concert.
posted by The World Famous at 11:50 AM on September 9, 2010


oneirodynia: *why on earth would you put mascara as a thing in your dating profile?

One of the OkCupid profile sections is "the six things I could never do without".

So apparently, white women say mascara, black women say lip gloss, hispanic women say mascara and lip gloss, and asian women say lip balm.
posted by flex at 11:55 AM on September 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


It's a cute comparison. But I don't think anyone can, in good concience, compare David Lee Roth to Sean Connery

The expression Roth:Hagar::Connery:Moore is not comparing Roth to Connery any more than the equation (100 - 99) = (3 - 2) is claiming that 100 = 3.
posted by straight at 12:16 PM on September 9, 2010


Oh, I got you, smackfu. That was for l33t's benefit.

As for VH, the eternal* question for me remains: do you like Van Halen or Duran Duran??

* Eternal in the sense that it still rings in my ears from the day it was posed by my peers in junior high. The insistence of it still amuses me to no end.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 12:41 PM on September 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


* Eternal in the sense that it still rings in my ears from the day it was posed by my peers in junior high. The insistence of it still amuses me to no end.

It's a bit like the Indian chap who went to Belfast and, upon stating that he was Hindu, was asked whether he was a Catholic Hindu or a Protestant Hindu.
posted by acb at 2:04 PM on September 9, 2010


"I love to travel! I take a cruise every year!"

I run a contest every year that determines the dozen or so "most eligible" single people among a particular population. Those nominated are asked to fill out an email forward–style questionnaire. You would be appalled by how many women's travel fantasies go no further than cruises and sipping wine in Tuscany. And whose book preferences rarely stray beyond Eat, Pray, Love; The Secret; Tuesdays With Morrie; and The Five People You Meet in Heaven.

Oh, and this year, everyone, male or female, seems to love the many and varied spellings of "California Gurls."
posted by limeonaire at 3:51 PM on September 9, 2010


do you like Van Halen or Duran Duran??

Poison (and Camaros) or Placemats (and bikes).
posted by limeonaire at 3:53 PM on September 9, 2010


OkCupid profiles can now be linked via your MetaFilter profile. Rad!
posted by jph at 3:56 PM on September 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


I have to say, calling her Alicia Fucking Keys kinda grows on ya.

Of course, in the post-ironic age, one can apply this to anything and get away with it, because nobody knows whether or not you're on the cutting edge of the pop-cultural goldmine. Hall and fucking Oates. Kenny fucking G. Celine fucking Dion. (Well, maybe not that last one.)
posted by acb at 5:29 PM on September 9, 2010


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