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Yuri Chang | I hate you, but I love you

Good news if you date a vegetarian

Published: Thursday, November 1, 2012

Updated: Thursday, November 1, 2012 09:11

Tufts students want to have sex more than five times per week according to OkCupid, a popular online dating site. In 2011, OkCupid took data on college tuitions from U.S. News & World Report and then remixed it with their own data collection. The chart displays college tuition versus how many times a week students would like to have sex. OkTrends, its official data blog, detailed, “generally speaking, the more your parents are paying for your education, the more horny you are.” The private institutions were noticeably higher than public ones in how often students wanted to have sex per week.

Tufts fell right on the predicted best fit line of users wanting to have sex 5.25 times per week. Whatever that .25 means. Interestingly, Sarah Lawrence, a 72 percent female school, scored the highest out of all the colleges that were compared, coming in at six times per week. When the ratio of female to male students is three to one, I suppose that does leave a lot of unsatisfied women.

OkCupid is a free dating website where users are presented with questions about everything ranging from their hobbies, tastes and political views, as well as what they look for in a partner. The answers are then entered into an algorithm to match up users by their compatibility.

OkTrends takes the observations from hundreds of millions of OkCupid user interactions and finds some compelling and, not to mention, raunchy patterns and values of our society. For example, if you are someone who uses Twitter on a daily basis, you are more likely to have a shorter relationship and masturbate every day. For both men and women, the odds of enjoying giving oral sex are much greater if you are a vegetarian.

Statistics from social media platforms such as OkCupid can tell us more about our society than some of the world’s most esteemed research centers. We voluntarily enter very personal information on our own time and at our own convenience. We are not sitting through hours of testing in research centers nor are we picking up unwanted phone calls from national survey groups. OkCupid draws its research from seven million active users, in comparison to the typical sample size of 1000 by the prestigious Gallup polls.

OkTrends also reveals more serious matters on race and homosexuality.

The data shows that only 55 percent of white users are open to dating outside of their own race, while 80 percent of non−whites said yes to dating other races. Furthermore, the median number of sex partners for straight and gay men and women was six people all across the board, disproving the stereotype that gay people are more promiscuous.

Beyond trends in the United States, social media websites are effective tools for assessing international cultural differences, or perhaps lack thereof.

OkCupid found that “the correlation between sex and money is robust when extended to entire nations” regardless of culture or even religion. For example, countries with high GDPs such as Japan, Qatar and Switzerland had the highest portion of people looking for casual sex. On the other hand, Guatemala, Sri Lanka and Syria, three countries with very different cultures but similarly low GDPs, also had a lower percentage of people wanting sex with no strings attached. A theory could be made that people in wealthier countries can afford more time for, um, leisure, while those in poorer countries do not.

As someone who is struggling through her statistics class, I highly suggest that you take a look at the blog yourself; statistics have never been this entertaining.

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Yuri Chang is a senior majoring in international relations. She can be reached at Yuri.Chang@tufts.edu

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