Are you interested? Is a Facebook dating app used mostly by users older than 35. It works on the simplest of principles: you are shown a random profile and you vote whether you like what you see or not. In the first case the other person receives a notification he or she can respond to, otherwise you move on to another profile, and so on. This kind of software is a gold mine for sociologists, especially when the company behind the app is so kind as to release data from the analysis of 2.4 million (heterosexual) interactions worldwide, as it happened last week.
The information in question is actually just one snippet from a much larger report, but it opens a window on a frequently neglected perspective about sexual preferences: race. More specifically, Quartz compiled the data about inter-ethnic responses in four handy graphs, showing which racial combinations receive the most and the less responses, both for men and for women.
As you can see above, females of every ethnicity but black favor white males; Asian women are preferred by everyone but Asian men, who definitely are into Latinas. The number along the arrows indicate the percentages of proposals that were favorably answered.
The other side of the coin is represented by the least liked combinations. Here black males get the short straw with everyone but black females, who overwhelmingly dislike white men; black women, on their part, are uniformly unliked by absolutely every ethnicity – and especially by black men.
This information is of course too generic to allow for anything but a rough interpretation. The causes behind these numbers could be anything from the geographic source of the data to the cultural penetration of the app and more, but it is safe to say that we are still far from being a real integrated society. Can the legendary global village still be a sum of ghettos after all?