The Racial Divide – Racism And How Race Affects Online Dating (Updated For 2020)

Racial preferences in dating are something that most people have as all people are attracted to different physical traits. While some online daters do have an open mind and care more about the person than their race or cultural background, certain demographics are more likely to have strict requirements concerning the races and cultures they are willing to interact with. Having this information can make it easier for online daters to meet their match.

Racism and online dating

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Willingness Toward Interracial Marriage

More people are willing to engage in interracial marriage than they were in decades past. The percentage of people being very open to this idea has increased a lot since Loving vs. Virginia in 1967 which eliminated all state laws that banned interracial marriage in the US.

There has been a big change just since 2010. In 2010, about 24% of people in the US said that interracial marriage was a good thing. As of 2017, about 39% of people were strong supporters of interracial marriage and stated that it is good for society.

Dating Someone Who Has a Vocal Racial Bias

A vocal racial bias can be a major turnoff to some people. Over the years, whether someone was willing to date a person with a vocal racial bias has changed quite a bit. In 2008, about 30% of people said they would date a person with a vocal racial bias. By 2012, this percentage dropped to about 10%. However, in 2014, it had risen to about 20%.

Why the percentage went up again after being on a downward trend for six years is unknown. Since more people appear to be willing to date outside their race compared to decades past, this could be due to more people being open to a person’s differences and not excluding potential mates due to racial or ideological differences.

Desire to Date Someone of the Same Race

The desire to date someone of the same race has decreased over the years. Statistics show that in 2008, about 43% of adults wanted a partner of the same race. However, by 2014, this decreased to about 30% of adults preferring a partner of the same race.

The races that are most open to dating outside of their race are Latinos, Asians and African Americans. White women are excluded by 31% of Latino men, 71% of black men and 36% of Asian men. Only about 11% of Asian women say that they will not date a white man.

On the other hand, up to 91% of white people say that they are not willing to date a black man or woman. White people tend to exclude African Americans more than any other race.

Black and White Women Show a Strong Racial Preference

Women overall appear to tend to have more racial preferences in dating than men. Men are a little more open to dating outside of their race and this is true for all races of men. About 74% of women and 58% of men of all races prefer partners who are the same race as they are.

Both black and white women tend to feel the strongest about dating within their respective races. Approximately 45% of black women and 65% of white women prefer to date men that are the same race.

When it comes to men, the statistics are a bit smaller. About 29% of white men and 23% of black men prefer women who share their race.

Latinos Are Most Open to Interracial Relationships

The majority of Latino women and men are open to dating someone who is of a different race. Regarding racial preferences in dating, only 16% of Latino women and 15% of Latino men say that they have a strong preference toward only dating a fellow Latino.

Latinos are more likely to respond to other races and initiate conversation with other races. There does not appear to be a difference when it comes to their country of origin.

White People Most Likely to Not Date Outside of Their Race

White people are far more likely to stick to dating only other white people. More than half of all white people say they are not willing to engage with online daters of another race. Separately, about 65% of white men and 29% of white women say they want to date only other white people.

However, white men appear quite open to communicating with Asian women, especially older white men who are looking for a younger partner. About 40% of Asian women are willing to respond and engage with white men, and those from other races.

White women tend to have a stronger preference toward white men than white men have toward white women. However, younger white women seem more open minded when it comes to engaging with men of another race.

Nearly Half of Non-Whites Report Racial Discrimination on Dating Sites

Dating and race still seems to have a big influence regarding online dating websites. This goes beyond just simple racial preferences in dating. About 50% of all non-white online daters say that they have experienced racial discrimination at least once on a dating website.

Some white online daters directly state that they will not communicate with anyone from a specific race on their profiles. Others are reportedly more subtle and do things like use search filters to eliminate people of certain races from their search results.

There are some online daters who would like online dating sites to do away with being able to eliminate entire racial groups from search results. People can still have their racial preferences in dating but would not be able to filter out specific races if any sites adopt this idea.

African Americans Are More Likely to Message White People

White people tend to have strong racial preferences in dating. When it comes to dating and race, black people are 10 times more likely to initiate contact with a white person than white people are to initiate contact with a black person.

Black men and women are also among the most unopposed to dating outside of their race. They are more open to dating white people and those of other races compared to white people and other non-white races.

When it comes to responses, black women are most likely to respond to black men but will also consider other races. Black men tend to respond most often to white women. They respond to about 54% of the messages that they get from white women, which is a higher rate than their response to black women.

African American Women and Asian Men Are Viewed as the Least Attractive

African American women and Asian men get the least amount of responses on online dating platforms. While racism in dating may play a role, they are also less likely to get a response from the opposite sex members of their own race.

While black women tend to get the fewest responses, they tend to be the most responsive racial group among women. Asian men are moderately responsive to most races but are usually most willing to communicate with women who are Hispanic.

Online Daters Are More Likely to Cross Racial Boundaries

Compared to people who meet in the real world, online daters are more likely to be open to talking to someone of a different race. This does not mean that they do not have racial preferences in dating, but there is a higher likelihood that they will at least respond to someone of a different race and give them a chance.

For some people, racism in dating is why they do not pursue other races online. However, for some it is the fear of rejection. Asian women tend to be the most open when it comes to contact from other races, while Asian men tend to gravitate toward Hispanic women. When Hispanic women initiate contact with an Asian male, there is a 19% chance that they will get a response.

Black Men Are Most Likely to Respond to Asian Women

While not likely a case of racism in dating, black men tend to favor Asian women on dating platforms. When it comes to racial preferences in dating, black men appear to be the most responsive when they receive a message from a woman of Asian descent.

When Asian women message a black man, there is approximately a 26% chance that they will get a response. Asian women, however, are most likely to respond to white men. In fact, when it comes to dating and race, Asian women respond to 7.8% of the white men who message them, but they only respond to about 3.3% of the black men who send them a message.

Men Respond to Women More

Women have an advantage when it comes to online dating. When men send them a message, women are not as likely to respond compared to when the situation is reversed. In general, a man is three times more likely to respond when a woman sends them a message.

However, when it comes to white men, they respond to non-black women nearly equally overall. But, when an African American woman sends a message to a white male, the response rate is only about 8.5%. This could be simple racial preferences in dating for some of the white men, but in some cases, it could be a case of racism in dating.

Asian Women Get More Responses from Non-Asian Men

When it comes to online dating, Asian women tend to be among the most successful in getting responses from other races. Asian women are more likely to get responses from non-Asian men when they initiate conversation. On average, about 15.8% of Hispanic men, 17.6% of white men and 26% of black men respond favorably to communication from Asian women.

Education and Interracial Marriage Among African Americans

African Americans with a college degree tend to be more open to interracial dating and marriage. About 21% of African American newlyweds are married to someone from a different ethnic or racial group. Educated black men are more likely to marry outside of their race. Approximately 13% of black women and 30% of black men who graduated from college have a spouse from a different racial group.

These statistics are compared to about 17% of African Americans with some college and 15% with no college marrying a different race.


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Belief In Interracial Marriage

Approximately 39% of people strongly support interracial marriage and believe it is good for society.

Dating Someone With A Racial Bias

About 20% of online daters said that they would be willing to date a person who had a vocal racial bias against at least one other race.

Date Only The Same Race

When looking at all races, about 30% of adults say they have a strong preference toward only dating within their race.

Black And White Women Show A Strong Racial Preference

Approximately 45% of black women and 65% of white women strongly prefer to only date men that are the same race as they are.

Latinos Prefer To Date Other Races

Only 16% of Latino women and 15% of Latino men prefer to date a fellow Latino.

White People Most Likely To Date ONLY Their Own Race

More than 50% of all white online daters say that they are not willing to date outside their race.

Half Of Non-Whites Report Racial Discrimination On Dating Sites

Approximately 50% of all non-white people on online dating sites say that they have experienced racial discrimination at least once.

African Americans Are More Likely To Message White People

Compared to white people messaging black people, black people are 10X more likely to initiate communication with white people.

Black Men Respond Most Often To White And Asian Women

Black men tend to respond most often to white women. They respond to about 54% of the messages that they get from white women. Black men respond to Asian women 26% of the time, but Asian women only respond to black men about 3.3% of the time.

African American Women And Asian Men Get Fewest Responses

Black women and Asian men get the fewest responses when they initiate contact on an online dating site compared to men and women from other races.

Asian Women Most Open To interracial Dating

Asian women are the most open to interracial dating, while Asian men are most likely to respond to Hispanic women. Asian males respond to them about 19% of the time.

Least Likely For White Men And Black Women To Connect Online

White men respond to black women about 8.5% of the time, making it least likely for white men and black women to connect on an online dating platform.

Asian Women Get More Responses From Non-Asian Men

Asian women get more response from non-Asian men. Approximately 15.8% of Hispanic men, 17.6% of white men and 26% of black men respond to Asian women.

African Americans With Degrees More Likely To Be In Interracial Marriage

African Americans who graduate from college are more likely to marry someone of a different race. Approximately 21% of African Americans with a college degree marry outside of their race.

SOURCES:

https://www.jbhe.com/

https://www.jstor.org/

https://qz.com/

https://www.inverse.com/

https://www.pewsocialtrends.org/

https://www.usatoday.com/

https://theblog.okcupid.com/

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https://www.tandfonline.com/

https://www.socialrelationslab.com/

http://www.spsp.org/

https://www.marketwatch.com/

https://www.npr.org/

https://www.law.cornell.edu/

https://faculty.chicagobooth.edu/

https://www.socialrelationslab.com/

https://www.huffpost.com/

https://cis.cornell.edu

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