Nokyoung Xayasane
May 07, 2013

Having the Internet Means You’ll Probably Get Married Soon, Says Study

Looking for Mr. Right? It turns out all you need is the Internet.

Having access to broadband Internet increases the likelihood of twentysomethings walking down the aisle, says Andriana Bellou from the University of Montreal.

“Marriage rates grew on average more in states with greater increases in broadband penetration,” writes Bellou in her paperThe Impact of Internet Diffusion on Marriage Rates: Evidence from the Broadband Market.

There was between a 0.9 to 2.2 percent increase in marriage rates among 21- to 30-year-old Caucasians who lived in states with increased Internet access.

If this correlation is for realsies, the increase in twentysomethings getting hitched could be because of online dating. The likelihood of finding a guy who likes roller derby, wants 1.5 kids and a vacation house in Malibu probably goes up if you have access to a bunch of contenders to choose from. It’s like an epic Gladiator battle for your attention and you can choose to give them the thumbs up or the thumbs down.

However, let’s not get ahead of ourselves and start pinning more wedding photos to our “Dream Wedding” board.

One resourceful reader found the correlation to be pretty weak.


More bad news: finding so-called Mr. Right doesn’t mean he’ll become Mr. Forever since finding the right guy is only half the battle — keeping him is another story.

“If meeting people becomes easier at all times and ages so that a divorce seems less costly, then this could imply entering a marriage less thoughtfully to begin with,” says Bellou. “In the latter case, we might expect higher marriage rates (related to Internet expansion) but also higher incidence of divorce.”

You can’t win them all, but at least the Internet has an endless supply of cute baby photos and cats who look like hot dudes.