It took them enough time, didn’t it?

But is one man’s convenience a woman’s sacrifice? The answer is probably yes.

As my dear friend Louann Brizendine, a UCSF neuroscientist and New York Times Bestselling Author of “The Female Brain” and “The Male Brain,” told me almost 10 years ago during the Match.com era: Digital dating puts women at an evolutionary disadvantage. When Louann and I recently reconnected, she said she still believes this is true — if not worsening as society becomes more technology dependent. In the absence of IRL interaction, the anthropological cues that help women determine the safety and desirability of a potential partner are eliminated. Eye contact, smell, vocal intonation, physical demeanor and proximity. Without them, a woman is reduced to physical appearance and willingness to copulate. Or at least send some risqué Snapchats for a little Joaquin Phoenix-style “Her” action.

It’s an interesting conundrum for a variety of reasons that cross biology and gender roles, sexual orientation, generational shifts and social structure.

While many would take legitimate issue with ideas around gendered evolutionary advantages, much of societal function has been shaped by them and reinforced. Thus, for straight people, the prevalence of app-based dating has created an environment where the already shallow, once-physical bar for connection has been both digitized and lowered, breeding ample dissatisfaction beyond the casual sex marketplace. Potential serious partners with similar relational goals struggle to find each other and exert significant emotional capital weeding through surface-level options. The result is that lots of men are scoring, while women are losing.

Think what Granny would have said about making it easier for men to get sex.
And all that was thrown out, was it not? The result being pretty much what Granny would have said, no?

26 comments on “It took them enough time, didn’t it?

  1. Dating apps and current societal trends don’t particularly benefit either men or women. In current western society most of the females all chase the top 10-20% of attractive males on dating apps, because ultimately it is females that make the final decision about sex and relationship.

    This leads to two problems- first less attractive, dominant and wealthy males gain very little success unless they lower their standards considerably. This is demotivating and leads to disillusionment with finding an acceptable long term partner, loss of drive to succeeed due to lack of requirement to provide, and general emasculation of less attractive males. A vicious circle.

    On the other hand women have to be fairly unattractive to “fail” at this game because the top 10-20% most attractive/desirable males are happy to have sex with lots of different female partners. Second this apparent “success” for women while at peak youth and desirability (men not that fussy provided no commitment, even very attractive men) rapidly declines with age leading to a lot of older (i.e. late 20s-40s) women who can’t find anyone they deem attractive enough to settle with, having been hunting the alpha males while younger and more attractive and having received an incorrect idea of their actual long term prospects as a result.

    This societal change, not really related to dating apps which are just a natural consequence, is very detrimental to societal and cultural longevity and ability to replace population in the longer term. Compared to the old system of marriage and settling down at a relatively young age which provided an equitable distribution of females in society, the new societal arrangement is very weak to outside demographic takeover. Compared to a system like Islam, it is an evolutionary loser, which is very sad.

  2. But gosh, doesn’t this article imply that men and women are quite different? But that would be heresy!

  3. “and having received an incorrect idea of their actual long term prospects as a result.”

    This was an interesting point. Longer lives means that people are living their lives in phases, whereas before it was childhood then boom; married with kids. But lives are not yet so long that we can afford to make poor choices. Casual dating until 35 before starting to look for ‘the one’, is one mistake; studying Geography with Dancing at university is another. The latter is easier (but not cheap) to correct, and maybe some insufficiently attractive men may decide to work on their finances instead and re-educate themselves as bankers or rocket scientists. It must be noted of course that many marriages made at an early age, for reasons of convenience, will have been unhappy and resulted in largely wasted lives.

    It is worse for women. Men can date women twenty years younger than themselves (as long as they themselves are at least forty), and also older than themselves, as long as they aren’t interested in having children. And if you are unattractive you can always pay for company. Women don’t have these options (or want to have it, in the case of the latter option) to the same degree.

    The good news is that as lifespans become even greater, and as we become even wealthier, the scope for correcting errors will grow. I strongly suspect that once having children becomes easier and cheaper we will have many more of them. The reason fertility has declined is that the opportunity cost of bearing and raising children is so very high. Once ‘robot nanny’ is here and working as well as a real nanny does, for the cost of running a car, I predict that fertility will increase significantly.

  4. Once you get past the long words this woman seems to be talking some sense.

    Correct me if I’m wrong but is this a first for this blog?

  5. “It is worse for women. Men can date women twenty years younger than themselves (as long as they themselves are at least forty), and also older than themselves, as long as they aren’t interested in having children. And if you are unattractive you can always pay for company. Women don’t have these options (or want to have it, in the case of the latter option) to the same degree.”

    Yes it is worse for women in some ways (in terms of final childless result, given the biological drives of women vs those of men), but it is also explicitly what women want. The previous arrangement was the result of a male run society. Current trends are a direct result of female suffrage.

    In the previous male dominated Western society, it was thought better to have something for the average unattractive/poor man in terms of wife and family than nothing at all. This is probably because in the past men having nothing and being desperate meant things like revolution.

    Nowards it is more likely to mean hopeless young guys sitting in their pants playing playstation, ordering takeaways and looking at porn. Not as immediately dangerous as in the past, but every bit as desperate and possibly more destructive in terms of societal strength and ability to endure.

  6. The current arrangement is very bad for unattractive/stupid/generally average men in terms of pshycological damage, lack of drive, lack of reason to try harder.

    It also makes the pursuit of sex something much more important than it needs to be. A general waste of effort on nothing but fun. It encourages a hedonistic but also depressed sociaty

  7. “will impact all dating apps because 50 percent of the younger generation don’t identify as straight.”

    That comment suggests to me Robyn Exton’s not going to be boss of anything big, but she’s projecting like mad. Grindr worked well and tinder was a success. Her clone for gay women not so much. She claims that was because it was designed by and for men. (she cloned it ffs!) It’s not obvious that’s the case. More likely is the niche market she chose has a problem that is not as easy to solve in mobile phone app format. Grndr location and photo..done deal see you in a jiffy. Tinder location, photo, text flirt, I’m buying see you on Friday?. Queer girls?, maybe she’s right and neither of those models work as well but if they do then they’ll use tinder or grindr. This is not thoughbecause of brogrammers, They’ve just gone after the mainstream and the easy to appify. Robyn really knows it too and that’s why as part of her funding spiel i guess she’s picked up some stat somewhere about 50 p.c. not identifying as straight, and thought there you are..grindr and tindr out of business in 10 years… and my non straight niche becomes mainstream. The internal logic of the article doesn’t work.

  8. “Once you get past the long words this woman seems to be talking some sense.”

    Please tease out some of her words of wisdom for us.

  9. 50 percent of the younger generation don’t identify as straight

    Probably 5% of the younger generation ‘identify as’ items of Victorian hardwood furniture. But you still won’t find them sitting in the corner of a vicarage sitting room.

  10. “In the absence of IRL interaction”

    I did know a guy who found that some dating was literally coffee and back to hers, but you can do as much IRL interaction as you want.

    The main benefit of Tinder/Match is efficiency. it replaces spending £20 going clubbing in the hope of getting a phone number (which happens rarely) with a far lower £x/month service that casts the net wider.

  11. The benefit of online dating and apps is that you know the girls on there are looking for someone. If you go to a bar or club, you have to wade through all those who are just out with friends, etc.

  12. @TimN
    “You have to wade through all those who are ‘just out with friends’, etc.”
    Is that what they told you?

  13. > Potential serious partners with similar relational goals struggle to find each other …

    There are plenty of dating websites catering to people looking for something more serious than a tinder hookup. I keep getting adverts for something called “Victoria Brides”, and for a desi Asian dating site whose name escapes me (despite not being remotely Asian). I’m not inclined to look, but I presume they’re full of over-30 women with a top score of 6.5/10; and over-45 men whose mothers are badgering them into it.

  14. In the absence of IRL interaction … Eye contact, smell, vocal intonation, physical demeanor and proximity. Without them, a woman is reduced to physical appearance and willingness to copulate.

    The people meet in real life too, you silly bat. They don’t stay on line!

  15. Tim Newman,

    I worked with a bloke from Lancashire who said that southern girls were a pain. He reckoned if you started chatting to a northern girl in a club and she wasn’t interested, she’d tell you to fuck off, but southern girls would just talk to you. Waste of an evening, he called it.

  16. Bloke in Wiltshire

    “I worked with a bloke from Lancashire who said that southern girls were a pain. He reckoned if you started chatting to a northern girl in a club and she wasn’t interested, she’d tell you to fuck off, but southern girls would just talk to you. Waste of an evening, he called it.”

    I lived in both the south and north of England and this is somewhat true, I don’t recall it being so blunt, but you got much clearer signalling from northern girls, to the point I found going to pubs & clubs in the south completely pointless and would rather just head to Dublin or Prague for the weekend instead.

  17. Nowards it is more likely to mean hopeless young guys sitting in their pants playing playstation, ordering takeaways and looking at porn.

    In reality, it leads to a world where women can’t leave the house without wearing a tent unless they want to be raped, and women past their youthful good looks are likely to find themselves trying to earn enough cat food to survive after they’re tossed aside.

    The reason successful cultures have monogamous relationships is not because they’re ‘male-dominated’, it’s because monogamy is an evolutionary success strategy and polygamous cultures are failures.

  18. Edward M. Grant

    Agree, sooner or later, this will turn 180 degrees.

    But an investment in a cat supply company might not be a bad idea in the meantime…

  19. “The reason successful cultures have monogamous relationships is not because they’re ‘male-dominated’, it’s because monogamy is an evolutionary success strategy and polygamous cultures are failures”

    Only cultures without political power for women can preserve monogamous relationships as the standard model.although the current model is a disaster for women and not what they say they want, their freely expressed choices say differently in any country with a free and equal female population.

  20. I agree that polygamy is associated with cultural failure and indeed accelerates the process, but polygamy is not the root cause of that failure. Female suffrage is the problem, causing socialism, identity politics, polygamy, the welcoming of invaders, and general societal decline on a massive scale.

  21. “Granny” taught that women are the gatekeepers to sex. The logical conclusion is that women should also be the instigators of sex as they are the decision-makers. However, “Granny” also taught that women should wait for men to instigate sex.

  22. “Female suffrage causes Socialism?”

    It allows socialism to become entrenched in society, because women vote for the state as an alternative to husband/father.

  23. Hmm, it is clearly at least hyperbole, but if you assume that women are slightly more inclined to overtly collectivist social arrangements (anecdatally obvious and seems to be evolutionary), then there may be a way to argue it.

    Of course, the obvious counter-argument is that most “socialist” arrangements come through revolution or subversion of the democratic process, rather than through being directly elected.

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