Online Dating – A cross-cultural comparison of matchmaking websites in the United States of America, Germany, India, and Japan
Bachelor Thesis 2011 182 Pages
2 CULTURAL FUNDAMENTALS
2.1 DEFINITION OF CULTURE
2.2 DIMENSIONS OF CULTURE
2.2.1 INDIVIDUALISM INDEX
2.3 CULTURAL INFLUENCE ON COMMUNICATION
2.4 CULTURAL PERSPECTIVE ON LOVE AND MARRIAGE
3 ONLINE DATING - AN OVERVIEW
3.2 TYPES OF ONLINE DATING
4 EMPIRICAL RESEARCH OF SELECTED ONLINE DATING MARKETS
4.2.1 CHARACTERISTICS OF AMERICAN CULTURE
4.2.2 DATING IN USA
188.8.131.52 A profile oneharmony.com
184.108.40.206 Prices and Service
4.3.1 CHARACTERISTICS OF GERMAN CULTURE
4.3.2 DATING IN GERMANY
220.127.116.11 A profile onparship.de
18.104.22.168 Prices and Service
4.4.1 CHARACTERISTICS OF INDIAN CULTURE
4.4.2 DATING IN INDIA
22.214.171.124 A profile onshaadi.com
126.96.36.199 Prices and Services
4.5.1 CHARACTERISTICS OF THE JAPANESE CULTURE
4.5.2 DATING IN JAPAN
188.8.131.52A profile ononet.jp
184.108.40.206 Prices and Services
List of figures
Fig. 1: The Onion
Fig. 2: Subscription modeleHarmony
Fig. 3: Subscription modelPARSHIP
Fig. 4: Subscription modelShaadi.com,part 1
Fig. 5: Subscription modelShaadi.com,part 2
Fig. 6: Subscription modelShaadi.com,part 3
Fig. 7: Subscription modelShaadi.com,part 4
Fig. 8: „Plan for marriage“,onet.jp
Online Dating - A cross-cultural comparison of matchmaking websites in the United States of America, Germany, India, and Japan
“We are all born and raised into a nation, a community and a family. And what we learnto value in these cultural environments stays with us for life. Even if we leave ourfamily, community and our nation we never fully leave their cultures behind”. (Yahya R. Kamalipour )1
In today’s society, the Internet and its possibilities have had an increasing influence in our daily life. The world is going online and it seems that how we choose to life our lives is more related to opportunities offered by the online world than to the cultural values we are born in and raised with. We shop, socialize, connect, communicate, work and even find our partners online. - What role does our culture play in this context?
In this thesis the author will demonstrate that culture influences online dating and determining factors for finding a partner online.
A cross-cultural comparison within online dating also means having the choice between various points of view: e.g. ways of communication in online dating, marketing of online dating providers, design of website user interface, website content, etc. After a thorough initial research the author chose to compare website contents of online dating services, specifically online dating websites operating the personality-matching system. Any additional approach would have compromised the quality of the outcome of this thesis due to obvious limitation concerning the extent of pages.
Thus, support or disapproval of the given hypothesis will be founded on the comparison of required profile information in online dating websites.
The relevant countries were deliberately selected as they provide a very broad cultural perspective. Western cultures are presented by USA, which was the first online dating market and Germany as being the country of the author’s origin. India and Japan were chosen to present online dating in Eastern cultures.
Some aspects of culture, which are relevant within this thesis, are hard to generalise for all people within a country, as there are big differences, depending on urbanization, religion, and socio-economic status. It has to be considered that studies of Western, Westernized or Eastern cultures mostly reach social groups that are modern, urban and affluent. Certain observed characteristics of or changes in a society’s culture might not be applicable for more traditional, rural and poor social groups within this culture.
As this thesis is written from a Western point of view, some chapters about Eastern cultures appear more detailed than the Western equivalent. It might be opposite if the author were from Eastern cultural origin: more Western characteristics would then be regarded as remarkable.
This thesis proceeds with cultural fundamentals outlined by presenting different approaches of culture and its influence on communication and perceptions of love and marriage. Subsequently, an overview of the online dating market and different types of online dating are provided. After describing the methodology of empirical research, the actual subject of this study, online dating websites in USA, Germany, India and Japan, is presented in according subchapters. Each subchapter starts with a short introduction about the country itself and selected cultural characteristics. It continues with a presentation of the specific online dating website followed by description of its profile information and an overview about the dating website’s prices and services.
The core of this thesis presents the findings of the empirical research by analysing and comparing profile information of different dating websites in relation to culture, indicating cultural similarities and highlighting cultural differences. The conclusion involves important outcomes and provides prospects to further research issues.
2 Cultural fundamentals
2.1 Definition of culture
Culturein its Latin origin meansthe tilling of the soil. Nowadays, it commonly refers to civilizationorrefinement of the mindincluding knowledge, experience, beliefs, values, attitudes, meanings, hierarchies, heroes, religion, notions of time, roles, spatial relations, concepts of the universe, and material objects and possessions shared by a group of people in the course of generations, and which distinguishes them from another. Culture also means a way of life: rituals, traditions, values and symbols that people of a group accept (generally without thinking about them), and that are passed along by communication and imitation (so-called social learning) from one generation to the next.2 In order to culture deriving from one’s social environment instead of one’s genes, it distinguishes on the one hand from human nature (universal and inherited) and on the other hand from one’s personality (inherited, learned and individually specific).
Hofstede pictured four terms to describe manifestations of culture as skins of an onion:
Fig. 1: The Onion
illustration not visible in this excerpt
The Onion(figure 1) indicates “that symbols represent the most superficial and values the deepest manifestation of culture, with heroes and rituals in between.”3 Rituals (e.g. ways of greeting, and weddings),heroes (idealized models presenting behaviour within a culture),andsymbols (e.g. status symbols, and wedding ring) are observably for outsiders, but meanings are invisibly and can only be interpreted by practising insiders.4
Valuesform the core of culture. They are culturally fundamental convictions acquired early in lives and deal with pairings, such as right versus wrong, decent versus indecent, moral versus immoral, abnormal versus normal, and dirty versus clean. As meanings of symbols, heroes and rituals, the values often remain unconscious and can only be inferred from the way people act under different circumstances.
Religion is another key element determining one’s identity and affiliation to a certain group within a culture or subculture. Religious and cultural values and rules affect one’s thinking and acting in his or her everyday life.
Everyone carries within himself or herself patterns of thinking, feeling and potential acting. It includes activities supposed to refine the mind, but also “ordinary and menial things in life, such as greeting, eating, showing or not showing feelings, keeping a certain physical distance from others, making love, and maintaining body hygiene.”5
2.2 Dimensions of culture
Geert Hofstede is a Dutch social psychologist and anthropologist specialized in cultural studies. Most noticeably, he developed the theory of cultural dimensions, which indicates national and regional cultural groups influencing behaviour of societies and organizations. His study is based on the concept of national cultures, which does not focus on states as legal and political delimitation, but as nations. But states are the only relevant foundation for researching cultural differences, because of detailed different statistics about their population, which are kept by governments and appropriate for cultural research.
Between 1968 and 1972 Hofstede studied a large body of survey data about values of employees at 72 IBM subsidiaries from more than 40 countries in the world. They presented almost perfect samples, as they were similar in all respects except nationality.6 Hofstede useddimensions -here, defined as a certain aspect of culture - to measure cultural differences. Therefore, every statistically researched nation could be indicated on a scale of the relevant dimension, and, be comparable with other nations and their cultures; cultural differences were visualized.
His model ofCultural dimensionsis regarded as one of the most comprehensive works and important studies of cross-cultural analysis. Originally, it includes the following 4 cultural dimensions: Power Distance Index (PDI), Individualism Index (IDV), Maskulinity Index (MAS), and Uncertainty Avoidance Index (UAI). Later, Hofstede added a fifth and sixth cultural dimension: Long-Term Orientation Index (LTO), and Indulgency Versus Restraint Index (IVR). Thesecultural dimensions correlate significantly with demographical, economical and geographical indicators (national culture). In the following, the author details only 1 of 6 dimensions, which she regarded as the most relevant for online dating.
2.2.1 Individualism Index
Hofstede defines the IDV dimension as follows: “Individualism pertains to societies in which the ties between individuals are loose: everyone is expected to look after him- or herself and his or her immediate family. Collectivism as its opposite pertains to societies, in which people from birth onward are integrated into strong, cohesive ingroups, which throughout people’s lifetime continue to protect them in exchange for unquestioning loyalty.”7 Individualistic cultures are concerned with personalized relationship development, whereas collectivistic cultures emphasizing interdependence are concerned with in-group relationship development8.
In individualistic cultures, independence, self-realization, individual rights and decision making is more valued. Personal identity is defined by individual attributes. People of these societies show less concern for other person’s needs and interests. Schwartz characterizes individualist or contractual societies as narrow primary groups (nuclear families) with “secondary social relations, in which people develop specific obligations and expectations largely through negotiation in the process of achieving and modifying statuses”.9 Germany and the United States are prototypic individualistic societies. Relationships in individualism are neither obvious nor prearranged. They are voluntarily and have to be fostered. In individualistic countries, children grow up innuclearfamilies consisting of two parents (sometimes even only one parent).
Collectivism involves the subordination of individual goals to the goals of a collective.10 People conform to the expectations of groups (kinship, neighbourhood, work group) and go along with them, even if the demands are costly. In collectivistic societies, personal identity is based on one’s enduring ascribed status within the group. Personal privacy is reduced; social norms and duty as defined by the in-group are over the pursuit of personal pleasure.11
There is no need for specific friendships in collectivism. One’s family or group membership predetermines friendship. Children are born into complex family structures ofextendedfamilies, where parents, grandparents and other relatives live closely together. A survey questioning students from collectivist cultures revealed the following values being particularly important: filial piety (obedience to parents, respect for parents, honouring of ancestors, financial support of parents), chastity in women, and patriotism.12 Other key values are harmony, kindness, emotional stability and health.
Today, individualism-collectivism is viewed as one of the most important sources of cultural differences in social behaviour. Therefore, the author chose only this cultural dimension to establish her empirical research.
2.3 Cultural influence on communication
Communication is often described as information exchange and transfer. Regarding intercultural communication, Hall focused on the contextin communications, which describes the information surrounding an event. He distinguishes two different contexts:high context communicationandlow context communication.The two concepts describe acquisition and processing of information in cultural networks, especially a strong or weak referring context in communication. “A high context (HC) communication or message is one, on which the most of the information is already in the person, while very little is in the coded, explicit, transmitted part of the message”.13 High context cultures, which are particularly Asian cultures like China and Japan, ‘do not call a spade a spade, but an implement of husbandry’. Acknowledgement of the information is implicitly expected. Mentioning the details could be regarded negatively. “For example, within Japanese culture, being far more specific or elaborate than the situation demands is likely to be interpreted as a sign of incompetence. It is considered virtuous to ´catch on´ quickly, to adjust to someone’s position before it is logically and clearly enunciated”.14 High context factors, such as facial expressions, body language, hints, and circumstances of encounter are very important providers for information, which should not be underestimated. Furthermore, use of silence, behaviour, and paraverbal cues (articulation, intonation, speed, voice characteristics, and volume) imply a message through what is not said.
“A low context (LC) communication is just the opposite; i.e. the mass of the information is vested in the explicit code”.15 In low-context cultures (i.e. Germany, Scandinavia, and USA), information is not expected being already acknowledged or recognized without specific verbalism. Here, ‘a spade is called a spade’, communication is very direct and frank to provide information as precisely as possible contained in the message itself. Contrary to Asian cultures, in Western cultures it is an established notion that self- disclosure typically reduces uncertainty about others and increases interpersonal trust.16 This statement also supports research results from the 1980s, which indicate people in the United States consistently self-disclose more and self-disclose on a wider variety of intimate topics than people do in Japan. “While United States members tend to operate from an open communication system in dealing with relationship issues, the Japanese members tend to be more subtle and discrete in managing relationship issues and problems”.17
High- and low-context communication correlates significantly with Hofstede’s cultural dimension of individualism-collectivism. People in individualistic cultures verbalize and negotiate their individual wants and needs with a strong self-assertion focus. In contrast, communal, collectivistic people are more circumspective and discreet in voicing their opinions and feelings concerning interpersonal relationships because of a strong communal orientation focus.18 Meanings and limitations of online communication are not necessarily uniform across culture as the Internet is not culturally neutral. Indeed, local cultures, politics, community, Internet use, social shaping of technology, and language influence and shape online communication. Cross-cultural comparisons of website contents indicate that cultural values are reflected in online communication styles.19 As mentioned in chapter 1.1.1, this thesis is primarily focused on culture affecting profile information of online dating websites.
2.4 Cultural perspective on love and marriage
The Western culture believes in the importance of love for marriage, which - on first sight - seems to be universally accepted. But in most other cultures, mate selection and romantic beliefs of love and marriage are different. As mentioned above, in individualistic societies the main concern is one’s own interest and his or her immediate family, whereas in collectivistic societies, people have less individual freedom of choices and identify conform to expectations of the extended family, or other groups, who look after their interests in return for their loyalty.
“For instance, in mate selection, people in individualist cultures tend to make decisions based on what their hearts feel, but people in collectivist cultures often consider what other people will say”.20 In collectivistic cultures, marriages are not arranged by the bride and the groom, but by family members.
Love distinguishes in its connotations in many cultures. There are two types of love known as a valid conceptualization:passionate loveandcompanionate love. Hatfield definespassionate loveas “a strong emotional state, in which people experience continuous interplay between elation and despair, thrills and terror. As a result, passionate love is not only related to positive emotions but often also to emotional distress”.21 Passionate love is more intense than companionate love.
Companionate love is also described as ‘friendship love’ related to reciprocal liking and respect. It is characterized as a warm feeling of affection and tenderness involving shared values, deep attachment, long-term commitment, and psychological intimacy (within the meaning of open and honest talks with a partner about personal thoughts and feelings, which are usually not expressed in other relationships).22 This love type develops during a long time between people having a deep connection.
Definition of and susceptibility to love, choice of love partner and progress of a relationship are culturally affected. Societies vary in their attitude toward love and its importance.
In individualistic culturespassionate loveis highly emphasized. They value closeness, intimacy and free individual emotional expression. A committed relationship is regarded as a consequence of romantic love, which is the most important factor for marriage. Most people marry for love, disregarding of others’ views of one’s lover.
Collectivistic societies, due to its strong kinship networks and extended-family ties, view passionate love as negative. Love (in its passionate meaning) is clearly associated with freedom of choices. But when selecting the potential spouse, it is expected to take into account the wishes of parents and other family members.
Collectivistic people think passionate love relationships may disrupt the tradition of family-approved and arranged marriage-choices.23 Therefore, “romantic love is viewed as irrelevant or even disastrous for marriages”, and “it must be ´controlled´, through social disapproval, to maintain the strength of kinship networks”.24 Marriages in collectivistic cultures do not imply the absence of any romance. Romantic relationships often connote necessary seriousness and long-term commitment. According to Ye, “romantic love is not a means to look for excitement or entertainment. An individual needs to consider the obligations to the parents and family. The feeling of love between romantic partners is normally presented as a sense of responsibility and loyalty to the family”.25
Due to traditional social norms, people in collectivistic cultures usually marry through arrangement by the family. As people have to respect the opinions of their relatives, selection of marriage partner is a crucial event for both partners, but also for their families. Arranged marriages are rather based on compatibility of the two families (i.e. similar socioeconomic backgrounds) than on love. Although this marriage may not be based on romantic love, it is believed that couples in arranged marriages would develop companionate love for each other.26 “Behind the wide practice of marriage arrangement, there appears to be a belief that passionate love may decline faster but companionate love may endure and last longer and benefit couples in the long run”.27 Another analysis of cross-cultural data from 117 nonindustrial societies supports this contrast. It indicates that marriages based on love and the choice of one’s own spouse were less likely to occur in collectivistic societies with extended family systems compared to individualistic societies with nuclear family structures.28
Another point of view is the economic standard of living, which is strongly related to beliefs about love - particularly, concerning the establishment of a marriage. Studies revealed that love was more important for marriages in cultures, where economic interdependences between spouses were weak. Assuming a priori that extended- family ties are stronger in Japan, attitudes toward love among college students in Japan were compared to those of college students in the United States and in Germany. In the Japanese sample, romantic love was least highly valued.29
In some collectivistic societies, love is considered synonymous with sadness, jealousy, whereas in individualistic societies, love means happiness.
Many studies state love as an important predictor of happiness. One concept of happiness defined by scholars issubjective well-being, which consist oflife satisfactionandemotions. Here,life satisfactionmeans a cognitive evaluation of one’s overall life;emotions are the presence of positive emotions, and the absence of negative emotions.30 Criteria for defining a “successful marriage” may well differ for persons from individualistic and collectivistic societies.
Interestingly, in collectivistic cultures, long-life commitment and cultural tradition are more likely related to marital satisfaction than psychological intimacy in terms of reciprocal self-disclosure, sharing activities, and revealing strong personal feelings. “There was little, or at least, less concern with issues such as happiness or satisfaction in the marriage since the bond between spouses was not their most important relationship. The man’s primary responsibility was to his parents; the woman’s responsibility after her marriage was to her husband’s family”.31
In individualistic cultures, marital communication, emotional excitement and personal fulfilment contribute to subjective well-being and marital satisfaction.
Meeting, falling in love, deciding to marry (or cohabit) is a typical, familiar depiction of an intimate relationship developing between man and woman. It reflects universally shared assumptions about the nature of intimate, opposite-sex relationships. But they have not always prevailed.
Until 1500, in Western cultures, which are more or less individualistic cultures today, political and religious authorities generally viewed passionate love as a threat to the social, political, and religious order, and they attempted to suppress such feelings. Marriage was primarily an economic arrangement between two families.32 Until the late eighteenth century, the Renaissance, the Scientific Revolution, and the Industrial Revolution had reshaped the view of love. Romeo and Juliet,a tragedy written by Shakespeare (an famous English playwright of the Renaissance) is still one of the most popular love stories in the Western world. Collectivistic values with their predominant, pragmatic marriage decisions moved to individualistic ones, where romantic love became the guiding force in marriage decisions. Passionate and romantic love, marriage for love, intimacy, and sexual freedom for men and women are now highly valued.
Today, societies of the non-Western world are currently undergoing similar transitions. As they achieve economic prosperity out of traditionally collectivist value system, they now appear to be moving closer to Western style individualism.33 There are signs of changes to greater valuing of love as a basis for marriage among young adults in some Asian societies.
Regarding the last century, marriage rates in America and Europe fell during economic crisis (America and Europe in the 1930s) and recovered as the economy did. Peculiarly, marriage rates in Asia have been eroding during the last long boom.34 Pressure of wealth and modernisation upon family result in later marriage, less marriages and to some extent more divorce. Furthermore, improvements in women’s education and income change traditional marriage patterns. Rates of non-marriage rise at every state of education; “Women with less than secondary education are the most likely to marry, followed by those with secondary education, with university graduates least likely.”35.The Economistfurther reports the opposite in USA and Europe: marriage is more common among college graduates than among those with secondary education.36
On the other hand, collectivistic factors, such as parental approval of one’s choice and maintaining a network of family and kin relationships after one’s marriage, continue to be important.37 Finally, culture and ethnicity, individualism and collectivism still have a profound impact on people’s view on passionate and companionate love and how people deal with such emotions.38
3 Online Dating - an overview
Online dating is one of the most controversial businesses that benefits from the Internet revolution. Reaching millions of people, the Internet has helped the online dating industry to prosper to a multibillion-dollar love story for e-commerce customers, whose needs were not properly met under traditional matchmaking methods.39 Morgan et al. define online dating as “the use of websites that provide a database of potential partners - typically in close geographical proximity - that one can browse and contact, generally for free. These Internet dating services facilitate connections that may eventually lead to face-to-face contact and in-person relationships.”40
Online dating sites, unlike e-commerce sites, do not sell products, but a service. They create new market places, where available supply and demand equals, as registered users advertise themselves while they are also seeking for a partner. After joining an online dating website, users have to fill out a mandatory survey and createprofilesof themselves. A dating profile provides demographic, socioeconomic, and physical information of a user (e.g. age, gender, education level, income, eye colour, hair colour, height, and weight) as well as his relationship preferences (e.g. long-term relationship or casual dating). The website provides a comprehensive database of user profiles, and, depending on the type of online dating (see also chapter 4.2), either a search screen for finding the right match by oneself or recommendations of potential partners. Normally, online dating sites use subscriptions as sales models.41
Before online dating, singles being too busy for common socializing, utilized agency matchmaking services, newspapers or telephones for finding a partner. Using telephone services, a single just set up a voicemail box and contacted anyone who caught his or her attention. Typical personal ads in newspapers include a description of the ‘advertising’ single and the potential partner that he or she was seeking, and a phone or box number.
In 1994, the first online dating service started in the USA and initially experienced slow growth. First consumers were not enthusiastic adopters, because the database contained too few members, only a small number were interested in using a dating website. Additionally, a negative stigma was often attached to online dating services. It was viewed being an activity for individuals, who were high in dating anxiety in usual social interactions. But several Internet studies revealed the opposite. The more people are socially active in the offline world, the more they also communicate online. They use the Internet as just another venue to find a partner. Thus, online mate selection also means an extension of the user’s personal network by people, who could not be easily met in everyday life.42
However, by 2004, growth was no longer an issue and even despite economic downturn within the last years, prosperity of the online dating industry still continues. Researchers indicate 3 growth-driving factors for online dating:
1) Technological change and growing computer literacy affect increasingly access to and efficiency of online dating43,
2) Demographic change produces a greater number and variety of people seeking for a partner44 ; increasing mobility in response to labour market demands reduce sustainability of intimate relationships45
3) Social change heightens acceptance of online dating;46 time poverty due to growing pressures of career reduces opportunities for social activity and meeting new people.47
Today, online dating is enormously popular among singles of all ages. Long and irregular working hours, increasing mobility (moving for work), and dissolution of traditional modes of socialization result in a need for new or extended social networks; people use chat rooms and professional dating services on the Internet to find a partner. Romance seekers turn away from traditional and often expensive strategies of meeting people casually in bars and restaurants. Instead, they choose less spontaneous, but practical and inexpensive online services helping them to find a soul mate from the comfort of their desk.48 As Peter and Valkenburg state: “On the Internet, spatial proximity is irrelevant, and meeting similar people is easier than in real-life dating.Online dating can occur without help from friends. Dating websites can be accessed independently and constantly, whereas going out with friends seven days a week is far more difficult to realize.”49 Distinguishing features of relationships initiated online are high levels of flexibility and personal control over the pace as well as nature of computer-mediated communication interaction.50 Social cueing and contextual communication in online dating differ from, but are not inferior to the contextual tools used in face-to-face interactions. Reduced visual and auditory cues of CMC facilitate self-disclosure, especially in online dating. Online dating participants often anticipate future interaction, which increases the depth of communication and may thereby encourage a relationship formation.51 Indeed, online dating has become the fourth most popular strategy in finding a date or romantic partner, besidework or school,family or friends, andnightclubs, bars, cafes, or other social gatherings.52
The Internet offers an efficient, instantaneous, and convenient system for developing interpersonal relationships, which responds to the current needs of hectic daily lives and compartmentalization of social interaction, but still preserves the user’s identity if so desired.53 Unlike real relationships, anonymous virtual interaction allows users to communicate with others while controlling the degree, to which they are involved in the relationship. Due to a need for a particular model for channelling contacts, regulation of the user’s presentation and guidelines for communication, the social interaction is shaped by the website design (chat rooms, e-mail inboxes, instant messages).54
Online daters have certain minimum expectations of the provided services. According to Alan D. Smith, users are aware of how online dating works: Information about individuals will be collected and shared, and this information will be compared against information provided by others. Finally, the online dating website provides a list of other users with similar traits.55 The basic value proposition of online dating services is the provision of appropriate matches, which are interesting for customers to pursue. These matches are based on elaborate data collection, statistics and data mining techniques. Users can accept or reject these suggested matches. Freedom of choice and numerous options offer great chances, but also, in some respect, a necessity to having to select the right one.
3.2 Types of online dating
The online dating industry is very diverse. Differentiation depends on the point of view: either one distinguishes market segments by means of technologies or different target groups. Regarding technology, two broad categories of online dating site are identified:
1)Search/sort/match systems,such asMatch.comorfriendscout24.deare mostly used by younger people, who do not primarily look for a partner, they want to spend a whole life with. These websites are rather for flirting, dating, or short-term relationships than long-time relationships. Based on self-selected search criteria, members browse actively the database searching for a date or flirt.
2) Inpersonality-matching systems,online dating site providers retain the control over matching people. There is no transparency of ‘the marketplace’ for users. These online dating websites use a range of personality tests and psychological assessments that have to be filled out by the member. Subsequently, they build lists of traits that individuals seek in an ideal partner and match subscribers based on these traits, e.g. education and professional background, personal interests, hobbies, values, relationship skills and life goals.56 Users of such ‘matchmaking’ sites are usually older (compared to users of search/sort/match systems), and interested in long-term relationships.57
A new generation of online dating services has created a subgroup of these matching systems by adding one more parameter: biology.Science-based dating servicessuch as Scientific Match.comor Gene Partner.compromise lasting relationships on the basis of genetic information and match people based on differences between their immune systems.58
Online market segmentation into target groups reveals a great demographic diversity. After years of trying to match every customer with his or her prospective mate, the dating industry now develops a more specialized market segmentation strategy.59 There are endless possibilities as potential customers differ in age, intention, interests, location, nationality, physical abilities, profession, religion, and sexual orientation while defining their preferences in selection of companions. Today, the potential customer looking for a date or the love of his life is spoilt for choice: dating by age, e.g. senior dating (seniorsmeet.com); dating by intention, e.g. casual adult dating (forgetdinner.co.uk), for having an affair (marriedsecrets.com) or finding a marriage partner (bharatmatrimony.com); dating by interests, e.g. sports dating (fitness- singles.com); dating by location, e.g. in Berlin, Germany (berlinersingles.de); dating by nationalities, e.g. Hispanics (allhispanicdating.com); dating by profession, e.g. farm dating (farmdating.com.au); dating by physical condition, e.g. dating for disabled people (deafsinglesconnection.com) or (dating4disabled.com); dating by religion, e.g. Jewish dating (jdate.com); dating by sexual orientation, e.g. homosexual dating (gayromeo.com,thepinksofa.com.au) or transsexual dating (transpassion.com). Besides there are various online dating websites providing niches, such as sadomasochism, single parents, bisexual couples, etc.
As mentioned in chapter 1.1.2, the author focuses on online dating websites of the personality-matching system used by people, who look for a serious long-term relationship, respectively a marriage partner. Like advertising consumer products, users of online dating services promote themselves by emphasizing their positive qualities, such as appearance, social status, and wealth, for being selected. Depending on the cultural background of the online dating website, the self-promoting profiles differ in their contents.
4 Empirical research of selected online dating markets
After outlining fundamental cultural aspects and a description of online dating, the following chapter presents empirically researched information and knowledge related to culture and dating in USA, Germany, India and Japan.
This thesis’ approach is based on desk research by accessing databases viaFree University of Berlin(FU Berlin) and investigating already existing information such as literature, trade journals, and serious Internet sources. Most sources are primary sources (surveys and working papers) conducted and written by PhDs and scientists from universities in USA, Canada, UK, Australia, India, Japan, Denmark, Spain, Lithuania and Saudi Arabia, and published in several trade journals. Throughout the large number of sources that this research refers to, many cross-references were discovered: Authors referred their surveys to prior works of other scientists that were also viewed within this thesis.
Besides, expert interviews were conducted to receive better insights into certain fields of the initial research, such as online dating worldwide (interview with Mr. Wiechers) and the German online dating market (interview with Mr. Murschenhofer).
Studying the Japanese online dating market had its own special problems given by the total absence of English-language on Japanese dating websites. Nevertheless, investigated sources indicated that Japanese dating culture is by far too interesting for being ignored. Thanks to the support of Mrs. Kätner and Mrs. Hada, the Japanese websiteonet.jpcould be considered within this study. Mrs. Kätner from Germany is Master student of Japanese Studies atFree University of Berlin(FU Berlin). She already lived in Japan and will move back there by the end of 2011. Mrs Hada from Japan lives in Germany since January 2011. Not knowing one another, each of them independently translated the Japanese dating website and showed identical results. Due to their opposite cultural backgrounds and experiences, the author enlisted both of them as sources to ensure that the translation was representative for the culture and not biased by individual interpretation.
As mentioned in chapter 1.1.1, the initial hypothesis about cultural influence on online dating will be exemplified with the help of online dating profiles, which every dating websites require members to create by filling out a questionnaire for being registered. Profiles of both genders were created on each of the following websites:eharmony.com(USA),parship.de(Germany),shaadi.com(India), andonet.jp(Japan) to view profile information as described in the following subchapters.
The United States of America have a well-developed industrial and highly mechanized economy. As shown in appendix, figure A.1, USA with a population of 309,349,689 people is the third most populated country in the world. In 2010, USA generated a GDP of $ 14,660,000 million and $ 47,200 per capita. Compared by GDP, USA is the 2nd world’s largest economy power with a growth rate of 2.8%. The inflation rate is 1.6% and 9.6% of people capable of work are unemployed. 15.1% of the American population live below the poverty line. English is the official language. The most popular religions are Protestant (51.3%), Roman Catholic (23.9%), Jewish (1.7%), Buddhist (0.7%), Muslim (0.6%), and 21.8% of Americans are unaffiliated or members of other religions. According to theCIA World Factbook, 99% of American population are able to read and to write, which also support a higher level of education and Internet literacy. In 2009, more than 249 million Americans used the Internet. The Human Development Report Office rated USA number 4 of best-developed countries on the basis of key indicators, i.e. health, education, income, inequality, poverty, gender, sustainability, human security, and composite indices.60
4.2.1 Characteristics of American culture
Due to their history of immigration, the USA is nowadays widely diversified by cultural groups and subgroups from all over the world. Hofstede´s cultural analysis rates the USA the most individualistic country (IDV-score 91), where individuals are relatively disconnected in the society.61 As a low-context nation, Americans communicate very directly and expect their counterparts speaking clearly and in a straightforward manner. They value logic and linear thinking62 and the ability to exactly specify important information.
In the USA, there are two prevailing ideologies: On the one hand, there is liberalism, which implies the freedom of the individual (‘Life is what YOU make of it’). In its culture of ‘high achievers’ the individual’s success is prioritized as the highest value. The ‘American Dream’ of self-realization depictures a strong belief in economy, money and equal chances for everybody to reach economic wealth by hard working. On the other hand, there is conservatism emphasizing traditional values, such as family, morale and the church (more than 70 % of Americans are Christians). Marriage is a civil institution, which is traditionally performed in a church.
Generally, a nuclear family in the U.S. consists of a married couple with two or three children. Americans often consider blood relatives as more important than relatives through marriage; therefore, nuclear family ties are generally closer than among extended kin ship. However, trends of alternative family types are on the rise. A significant number of Americans of all ethnic origins live in non-traditional families, such as unmarried couples or single parents, gay couples and their children, or gay families without children.63
4.2.2 Dating in USA
Until the industrial revolution, finding a partner was based on pragmatic reasons, e.g. financial security or compatibility of the families’ social classes. Later, the romantic love became essential in reasoning marriage, and today, Americans glorify romance, love and passion: The ideal spouse is viewed as a ‘soul mate’. A study revealed, that “Astonishing 94% of single men and women, ages 20 to 29, agreed with the statement, ‘when you marry, you want your spouse to be your soul mate, first and foremost’.”64 Love is viewed as a fortune, which cannot be planned; therefore, marriages being arranged for other reasons than love seem commonly strange for most Americans.
Traditionally, finding a partner often relied on social networks (family, friends, colleagues play matchmaker), going to bars, attending social events. By reasons of increasing individual mobility (e.g. travelling abroad for business and educational reasons) and relocation to meet job demands, these meaningful communities partly disappeared. As individuals face new challenges in life, which make traditional dating methods less practical, they may become more reliant on intermediaries to facilitate union formation.65 Furthermore, attractiveness of workplaces as a site for meeting potential partners and forming romantic or sexual relationships has been declined due to growing sensitivity about sexual harassment.66 Accordingly, singles were looking for new, easy-to-access dating options.67
The first online dating market emerged in the United States, and, although intermediaries in the marriage market were not new, many people perceived them negatively, which may be originated in their cultural understandings of love and partnering. Online dating was then at odds with traditional notion of romantic, spontaneous love, since most Americans thought, love ‘happens’, and cannot be bought on a subscription to be found through a search engine.68
Today, online dating sites have become a common strategy for mate selection for highly selective subpopulation of single Internet users.69 A study by Peter and Valkenburg indicated that people around 40 years of age are the most active online daters. It is assumed that traditional dating strategies for single people in this age do not work anymore as they are often divorced and have to combine children with a busy career.70
In 2006, thePew Internet & American Life Projectreleased a market report about online dating in the USA71:
11 % of American Internet using adults (about 16 million people) have visited dating websites. Most of them reported good experiences with the sites: 52% said that they had mostly positive experiences; 7% had both positive and negative experiences, 29%, reported mostly negative experiences; the remaining 12 % said that they did not know or declined a response.72
43% of all online daters in the U.S. (nearly 7 million adults) went on dates with people they met through sites, and 17% of them (nearly 3 million adults) have entered long- term relationships or married their online dating partners.73 They use the Internet both as a roadmap for the offline world and as a destination to meet people and connect with a romantic partner.74 Online daters think that the Internet helps getting to know more people and finding a better match, as dating websites offer a larger pool of potential dates.
eHarmonywas founded by Pasadena-based relationship expert, Dr. Neil Clark Warren, who was practising 35 years as a clinical psychologist and marriage counsellor. In collaboration with Dr. Galen Buckwalter, a research professor at the University of Southern California, he “sought to identify characteristics between spouses that were consistently associated with the most successful relationships”.75 After years of research and development, they determined 29 key dimensions of personality and patented them asCompatibility Matching System®, a personality test to predict a couple’s compatibility and potential for a long-term relationship.
Based in Santa Monica, California,eHarmony Inc.was launched in August 2000. Today, the company operates online matchmaking services in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia and Brazil, and in 11 European countries, where they have an affiliation witheDarling.Furthermore, they runeHarmony Labs, a relationship research facility andeHarmony Advice, a relationship advice website. TodayeHarmonycounts more than 300 employees and 33 million registered users from USA and 150 countries in the world. According to their website, every day 542 people, who were matched oneHarmony,marry in the U.S.76
Due to their unique orientation to a narrow market segmenteHarmonyis well known. They target Christians, which present generally a giant market, as more than 70% of the U.S. population are Christians. Researching religious preferences, and aligning with other Christian web sites madeeHarmony becoming associated with more traditional Christian outlets. AseHarmony.com is considered more financially successful than other online dating services; profitability appears directly correlated with customization of a market segment.77
Obviously, they achieve a higher success rate than their competitors by extensively advertising their scientific approach in matching like-minded individuals and claiming character traits such as e.g. adaptability, family background and values, spirituality and conflict solving skills as the key factors for a successful long-term relationship.78 eHarmonystates its “goal is to get people in good relationships. We would rather give you no matches than bad matches.”79
Matching psychologically compatible partners is based on the partners’ responses in that mandatory questionnaire combined with identified key relationship determinants, such as beliefs and values about passion, fidelity, family etc.
A registration oneHarmonyrequires filling out the psychological survey by answering questions and evaluating relevance of given statements or attributes to describe one’s personality. Only registered users can browse the member database.eHarmonydoes not offer instant messaging like many other online dating services do. Instead, due to eHarmony’s business philosophy about quality matches, members select a few ‘teaser’ questions (multiple choice options and open-end questions), which have to be answered by the counterpart, thus encouraging personal communication.80
In social media,eHarmonyusesFacebookandTwitterto interact with members and other Internet users all around the world. InFacebook, 67,671 people ‘like’ the eHarmony-site (10/25/2011). Several times a day,eHarmonycommunicates with connectedFacebookusers by posting survey statements or questions related to relationship and marriage values, success stories about happy marriages. As the community of people, who like this page, is large, a lot of them like or comment these wall posts.81 On Twitter, 3,177 people (10/25/2011) followeHarmonyto read their ‘tweets’ about success stories and relationship and marriage topics posted several times a day.
220.127.116.11 A profile oneharmony.com
For creating a profile oneharmony.com,a questionnaire consisting of 16 sections needs to be filled out, which takes about 1 hour. Compared to other online profiles within this thesis, this is the most comprehensive profile with 28 selection fields, 3 input fields, and 6 open questions. Additionally, 300 items (statements, attributes etc.) have to be evaluated in relation to a self-description (true/false, agree/disagree etc.). In the following, only culturally relevant profile details are presented. The entire profile ofeharmony.comcan be viewed in appendix A.
Registration82 starts with usual information, such as firstname, gender, looking for, ZIP code, country, email, passwordandhow did you hear about us. When selecting the same sex in partner search (looking for),eHarmony recommends a link tocompatiblepartners.com,a website for gays and lesbians. It is not possible to log in toeharmony.comif one is not interested in opposite sex.
The next part continues withgeneral information. Here,eharmony.com requests information aboutgender(confirmation of gender), birthday, education level, personalincome, occupation, and height.
Some questions are about importance attached to some traits of a member’s match, e.g. a match’s age, education, income and heights. Weighting one’s indication, an ordinal scale with slider tool is provided to choose three options (not at all, somewhat, very important) or something in between. The member selects then his or hercurrent marital status(never married, divorced, separated, widowed),his or her ethnicity (White/Non-hispanic, Hispanic or Latino, African-American, Asian/Pacific Islander, Korean, Japanese, Chinese, Indian, Arab, Native AmericanorOther),the accepted ethnicities of his or her match and, again, the importance ofmatches’ethnicity. This might be reasoned by America’s great diversity of ethnical population group and the fact that interracial marriages are quite rare.
Ordinal scales are used for evaluation of some attributes (how well they describe one’s physical appearance) andone’s satisfaction with his or her physical appearance.
The 2nd sections is aboutpersonal characteristics including one’s and the ideal partner’sreligion(Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Sikh, Shinto, Other, Spiritual but not religious, Neither spiritual nor religious) , which relates toeharmony’s Christian approach. Again, an evaluation of the importance of the match’s religion or spirituality is requested.
In the 3rd section, the member has to evaluate given statements regarding one’s self- description: e.g.I do things according to a plan. I waste my time. I love order and regularity. I feel unable to deal with things. I get angry easily. I am easily discouraged. I often make others feel good. I love to help others. I usually wait for others to lead the way. I often carry the conversation to a higher level. I catch on to things quickly. I am good at analysing problems.
Obviously, these statements relate to the following subjects: ordering, stress, social skills, and intelligence. Interestingly, if one always selects same answers,eHarmony displays a notification asking the user to review his selection; otherwise it would have a negative impact on their ability to match.83
The 4th section requires the member to evaluate, how well 88 attributes describe him- or herself. Certain groups of related attribute become apparent: passion and happiness, religious values (morale, honesty), negative attributes: e.g.Warm, Clever, Dominant, Outgoing, Introverted, Cold, Stable, Spiritual, Predictable, Affectionate, Under-Achiever, Generous, Moral, Communicative, Honest, Sensual, Liberal, Conservative, Reflective, Caring, Physically fit, Dependable, Spiritual, Rational, Thoughtful, Kind, Easy-Going, Perceptive, Restless, Romantic, Well-educated, Selfish, Shy, Stubborn, Trusting, Competitive, Creative, Caring, Ambitious,etc.84
In the 5th part, again the member has to evaluate statements concerning hispersonal characteristics.Some statements seem to relate to the same key values as humor/happiness, social skills, religious values, passion, and aggression (negative attributes)85: e.g.My personal religious beliefs are important to me. I like to look at people of the opposite sex. I have an ability to make others laugh. My emotions are generally stable. If I am not in control of a situation, it is better if I leave. I greatly appreciate the physical beauty of the opposite sex. I think it is important to continually try to improve myself. I care a lot about the physical shape I am in. People who are controlling irritate me. I think it is important to express my feelings whether they are positive or negative.
In the short 6th section, the member indicates his or her emotions (happiness or fear) during the last months86:Happy, Confident, Hopeful, Satisfied, Energetic, Fortunate, Successful, Safe, Calm, Out of control, Fulfilled, Depressed, Tired, Fearful about thefuture, Unable to cope, Misunderstood, Plotted against, Sad, Anxious, Angry.
The following statements in section 7 concern relationship orientation and values, which are strongly influenced by Christian values, such as monogamy, fidelity, friendship and trust.87 These statements are evaluated via an ordinal scale including 7 levels from „absolutely disagree“ to „neither agree nor disagree“ to „absolutely agree“: People often let you down if you depend on them. It’s important to me to have close friends in my life. Being exclusive (i.e. monogamous) is one of benefits of being in a successful relationship. I sometimes find it difficult to trust people I get romantically involved with. Being monogamous causes relationships to get boring over time. I am looking for a long-term relationship that will ultimately lead to marriage. When I get romantically involved, I generally tell my partner just about everything. A‘serious’relationship needs to be exclusively (i.e. monogamous). I know I can always count on the people who are closest to me. I don’t need to have close friendships to be happy. Being monogamous helps build intimacy and trust in a romantic relationship.
The next section includesimportant qualitiesof the ideal partner. These traits are primarily related to passion, sharing interests, happiness, psychological intimacy, social skills and education and physical appearance.88 The user has to rate these statements via an ordinal scale including 7 levels from „not at all important“ to „somewhat important“ to „very important“:My partner’s personal values, sex appeal, love of children, beliefs, physical appearance, personality, ability to communicate, skills at resolving conflicts, capacity for emotional intimacy; The chemistry and the similarities between me and my partner, The romantic attraction I feel for my partner; Our sexual compatibility; Having similar ideas on parenting; Enjoying physical closeness with my partner; Doing special things to let my partner know how important he/she it to me; Showing my partner that his or her needs are as important to me as my own.
Section 9 calledAbout Your Personality89 requests the member’s decision about given statements beingtrueorfalseconcerning a good description of him- or herself. It is more or less about everyday life (driving too fast, reading side-effects in medication description, housekeeping etc.)
Afterwards one has to rate 24 interests and hobbies (music, travelling, religious communities, religious faith, volunteering, astrology, family, friends, and sports). Noticeably, the list of hobbies also includeshunting,which might appear strange for other societies. But as the gun law is less restrictive in the U.S. than in other Western cultures, hunting is a common hobby.90
Section 11 and 12 ask about one’s Living Skills91 (Socializing, Entertaining in my home, Achieving personal goals, Using humour to make friends laugh, Creating romance in a relationship, Keeping physically fit, Remaining calm yet resilient during a crisis, Helping those who are less fortunate or in need, Resolving conflict, Making art and culture an ongoing part of my life, Finding and taking on challenging activities, Finding creative solutions to everyday problems, Maintaining a healthy lifestyle, Making new friends) and one’s Communication Style in terms of social skills in communication.92: e.g.I try to accommodate the other person’s position. I try to understand the other person. I try to be respectful of all opinions different from my own. I try to resolve the conflict quickly. I try to avoid disagreement. I am passionate/intense about my position. I try to drop in issue once it is resolved. I try to resolve the conflict well.
Matching Information93 in section 13 require the member’s indication of his or her smoking and drinking behaviour, children (already have and/or starting a new family),city living inpluszip codeandcountryas well as the questionHow far are you willing to search to find your life-long love?
Finally, whileeharmony.comis creating the profile including the personality analysis, and match recommendations are processing, one can answer a few more open questions94, such as:What is the most important quality that you are looking for inanother person? Other than you appearance, what is the first thing that people noticeabout you? What are five things that you‘can’t live without?’
18.104.22.168 Prices and Service
Free membership oneharmony.comincludes viewing and requesting photos from recommended matches, sending and receiving communication requests as well as seeing, who viewed one’s profile and when matches last logged in.
Only a premium member can talk on the phone safely and secure, gets his or her ID verified and receives a deeper analysis of his or her personality. Additionally,eHarmonyprovides a free App forAndroidandiPhone.
There are 3 models of subscription. Included services and prices depend on type of subscription as shown below:
illustration not visible in this excerpt
Fig. 2: Subscription modeleHarmony
Source: eharmony.com (10/15/2011)
As shown in appendix, figure B.1, Germany with a population of 81,471,834 people is ranked number 211 in the world. In 2010, Germany generated a GDP of $ 2,940,000 million and $ 35,700 per capita. Compared by GDP, Germany is the 6th world’s largest economy power with a growth rate of 3.5%. The inflation rate is 1.10% and 7.10% of people capable of work are unemployed. 15.5% of the German population live below the poverty line. German is the official language. The most popular religions are Protestant (34%), Roman Catholic (34%), Muslim (3.7%), and 28.3% of Germans are unaffiliated or members of other religions. According to theCIA World Factbook, 99% of the German population are able to read and to write, which also supports a higher level of education and Internet literacy. In 2009, more than 65.125 million Germans used the Internet.
The Human Development Report Office rated Germany as number 10 of best- developed countries on the basis of key indicators, i.e. health, education, income, inequality, poverty, gender, sustainability, human security, and composite indices.95
4.3.1 Characteristics of German culture
Regarding Hofstede’s cultural dimensions, Germany is an individualistic country (IDV index of 67), where personal interests, individual freedom and self-realisation are prioritized. In 2010, according to the Federal Statistical Office Germany states, 40.2% of German households were one-person households.96
A typical German is viewed as being prompt, clean and orderly, polite and fair, direct, determined, but also quite traditional.97 In terms of communication, Germany is a low- context country. Germans use to focus on the main issues; they also like to give their opinions about everything and talk about personal matters. Holding one’s status in great respects, Germans communicate in a very formal way by addressing anybody, who is not part of their family or circle of friends, with ‘Sie’ (very formal ‘you’) and - if relevant - one’s academic title (e.g. Doctor or Professor). In Germany, social status is highly valued. Contrary to other cultural societies, birth does not predetermine social status for the rest of life. It can be improved by one’s individual merits. Higher education and success in professional life, which also leads to a higher income, upgrade one’s social status. Therefore, German people focus rather on their individual objectives and achievements, as they perceive it as a part of self-realization. Besides, basic values, such as attitudes towards work, family, leisure, money and consumption, are also perceived as being important.
In Germany, one’s personal choice or decision (e.g. concerning partner selection or courses of study) is not as influenced by parents or relatives as it is in other societies. Compared to collectivistic cultures, German family ties are rather weak.
A common type of family sharing one household is the nuclear family. In literature, there are various definitions of nuclear family. The most obvious difference is that in nuclear families only members of 1st kinship degree live together, whereas in collectivistic societies often more than 2 generations of higher degrees of kinship share one living quarter. The German nuclear family usually consists of opposite sex partners (married or unmarried) with their children. Nowadays, marriage is not as important for cohabitation as it was 100 years ago. Numbers of unmarried couples living together as well as children born to unmarried mothers are rising. In Germany, the concept of family has broadened as divorce rates have increased and alternative forms of partnerships have led to a liberalization of family policy. Distant relatives are still an important part of kinship. Due to economic mobility, they often do not live near the nuclear family. Instead, great kinships meet on special occasions such as the big ‘0’ - birthdays (40th, 50th, 60th etc.).
Protestant and Roman Catholic Church also affect German culture. Even people, who would describe themselves as atheists, celebrate Christian holidays (Christmas, Easter), which are good occasions to meet up with the whole family. But denomination does not have a significant impact on a German’s life as other religions might have in different cultures. Compared to USA, German are generally less religious and conservative.
4.3.2 Dating in Germany
Like the United States, Germany also experienced changes in attitudes towards love and marriage after the Industrial Revolution. People married less for pragmatic, socioeconomic reasons, but increasingly more for romantic love.
1 Yahya R. Kamalipour quoted by Shako, 2004, p. 60
2 Choudhury 2011
3 Hofstede/Hofstede/Minkov 2010 p. 7
4 Hofstede/Hofstede/Minkov 2010 p. 9
5 Hofstede/Hofstede/Minkov 2010 p. 5
6 Hofstede/Hofstede/Minkov 2010, p. 30
7 Hofstede/Hofstede/Minkow 2010, p. 92
8 Ting-Toomey 1991, p. 32
9 Schwartz 1990, p. 152
10 Dion/Dion 1994, p. 55
11 Hashimoto/Levine/Sato/Verma 1995, p. 557
12 Hofstede/Hofstede/Minkov 2010, p. 100
13 Hall/Hall 1990, p. 6
14 Farrer/Gavin 2009, p. 408
15 Hall/Hall 1990, p. 6
16 Hara/Yum 2006, p. 146
17 Ting-Toomey 1991, p. 33
18 Ting-Toomey 1991, p. 32
19 Farrer/Gavin 2009, p. 408
20 Ye 2006, p. 2
21 Hatfield/Kim 2004, p. 174
22 Hatfield/Kim 2004, p. 175
23 Hatfield/Kim 2004, p. 175
24 Hashimoto/Levine/Sato/Verma 1995
25 Ye 2006, p. 3
26 Hatfield/Kim 2004, p. 175
27 Hatfield/Kim 2004, p. 175
28 Dion/Dion 1993, p. 59
29 Hashimoto/Levine/Sato/Verma 1995, p. 557
30 Hatfield/Kim 2004, p. 174
31 Dion/Dion 1993, p. 61
32 Choo/Doherty/Hatfield/Thompson 1994, p. 391
33 Hashimoto/Levine/Sato/Verma 1995, p. 568
34 The Economist 2011
35 The Economist 2011
36 The Economist 2011
37 Dion/Dion 1993, p. 67
38 Choo/Doherty/Hatfield/Thompson 1994, p. 391
39 Smith 2004, p. 20
40 Morgan/Sautter/Tippett 2010, p.555
41 Bauer/Kratel 2011, p. 187
42 Schulz 2011, p. 75
43 Morgan/Sautter/Tippett 2010, p.556
44 Morgan/Sautter/Tippett 2010, p.556
45 Barraket/Henry-Waring 2008, p. 155
46 Morgan/Sautter/Tippett 2010, p.556
47 Barraket/Henry-Waring 2008, p. 155
48 Frazzetto 2010, p. 25
49 Peter/Valkenburg 2007, p. 849 (CMC), which produces new norms of
50 Barraket/Henry-Waring 2008, p. 159
51 Peter/Valkenburg 2007, p. 849
52 Lenhart/Madden 2006, p. 6
53 Ardèvol 2005, p. 2
54 Ardèvol 2005, p. 2
55 Smith 2004, p. 25
56 Frazzetto 2010, p. 25
57 Test 2011, p. 77
58 Frazzetto 2010, p. 25
59 Smith 2004, p. 22
60 Appendix A, fig. 2
61 Ting-Toomey 1991, p. 32
62 Kwintessential 2011
63 Countries and Their Culture 2011
64 Houran/Lange 2004, p. 298
65 Morgan/Sautter/Tippett 2010, p.558
66 Barraket/Henry-Waring 2008, p. 155
67 Okleshen/Peters 2006, p.2
68 Morgan/Sautter/Tippett 2010, p.558
69 Morgan/Sautter/Tippett 2010, p.554
70 Peter/Valkenburg 2007, p. 849
71 Lenhart/Madden 2006
72 Lenhart/Madden 2006, p. ii
73 Lenhart/Madden 2006, p. ii
74 Lenhart/Madden 2006, p. iii
75 eHarmony 2011
76 eHarmony 2011
77 Smith 2004, p. 22
78 Smith, 2004 p. 22
79 Okleshen/Peters 2006, p. 9
80 Okleshen/Peters 2006, p. 9
81 Appendix, fig. C.3
82 Appendix, fig. A.6
83 Appendix, fig. A.12
84 Appendix, fig. A.13-17
85 Appendix, fig. 18,19
86 Appendix, fig. A.20
87 Appendix, fig. A.21
88 Appendix, fig. A.22-23
89 Appendix, fig. A.24
90 Appendix, fig. A.25-26
91 Appendix, fig. A.27
92 Appendix, fig. A.28
93 Appendix, fig. A.29
94 Appendix, fig. A35-39
95 Appendix, fig. B.2
96 Federal Statistical Office Germany 2011
97 Hall/Hall 1990 p. 35