That was the second long-distance relationship she’d had through the forum: Her first, with a guy from Florida, lasted two years.
Lonely and alone on a Saturday night, I started scrolling through Ok Cupid and, out of boredom and curiosity, expanded my search options to include users anywhere in the world.
I was drawn in by the profiles of some of these new, distant matches and messaged a few asking if they’d like to chat on the phone.
That weekend I talked to a neuropsychologist from Milwaukee; a software developer from Austin, Texas; an improv instructor from Seattle; and an economics masters student from London.
At first, these calls were a little awkward—what were you supposed to say to a complete stranger you’d probably never meet?
But I had no plans to visit Austin and we lost touch.
A couple of weeks later, for work, I started combing through a data set of Ok Cupid “success stories”—blurbs that couples wrote in to let us know they’d found a soul mate or spouse through the site.Last year, Tinder launched a paid feature called Passport that lets people swipe on members anywhere in the world.And Scruff, a dating app for gay men, has a section called Scruff Venture that helps users coordinate travel plans and connect with host members in foreign countries.“For the right person, distance isn’t a problem,” one user commented.“I was young and stupid when I made the trip,” wrote another.“I guess people on online-dating sites know what they’re looking for, but these younger people in nevermet relationships aren’t really looking for love online,” the /r/Long Distance moderator, a 20-year-old college student who goes by Bliss online, tells me.