Implications of online dating

A bit less than half of teens (47%) say they feel this way about social media.

Teens also use social media to express public support or approval of others’ romantic relationships.

Just as adult women are often subject to more frequent and intense harassment online, teen girls are substantially more likely than boys to experience uncomfortable flirting within social media environments.

Fully 35% of all teen girls have had to block or unfriend someone who was flirting in a way that made them uncomfortable, double the 16% of boys who have taken this step.

Text messaging – which is widely viewed as one of the least acceptable ways of breaking up with someone – is more common in the context of actual relationships than its perceived acceptability might indicate.

Some 27% of teens with relationship experience have broken up with someone via text message, 31% have been broken up with in this way.

One-quarter (24%) of teen “daters” or roughly 8% of all teens have dated or hooked up with someone they first met online.

A majority of teens with dating experience (76%) say they have only dated people they met via offline methods.Understanding the role social and digital media play in these romantic relationships is critical, given how deeply enmeshed these technology tools are in lives of American youth and how rapidly these platforms and devices change.This study reveals that the digital realm is one part of a broader universe in which teens meet, date and break up with romantic partners.While most teen romantic relationships do not start online, technology is a major vehicle for flirting and expressing interest in a potential partner.Along with in-person flirting, teens often use social media to like, comment, “friend” or joke around with someone on whom they have a crush.

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Nearly two-thirds (63%) of teens with dating experience have posted or liked something on social media as a way to indicate their support of one of their friends’ relationships.

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