Theories Of Online Dating

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There are many theories that can be used to study online dating. These include sociology theories such as liquid love and chaos of love; communication theories such as social penetration theory and social exchange theory.
2.2.1 Liquid love theory
According to Bauman, relationships are “the hottest talk of the town and ostensibly the sole game worth playing, despite their notorious risks” (Bauman as cited in Giddens, 2006, p. 244). Liquid love shows the transformation of modernity from solid to liquid where nothing have remains as before, constantly changing social forms are taken place at a greater speed (Bauman, 2004). That is why the conduct of online dating is much different as compared to traditional dating. According to Lim (2007), due
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Online dating contains the elements of liquid love as it focuses about bond- free living of relationship whereby free strings are attached to the couples with the enhancement of technology (Bauman, 2004). Online dating users can freely connect to any person without any commitment at the first place. In other words, through technology, everyone can make initiative to start a conversation with anyone and also choose to terminate the relationship without encountering the other person (Bauman, 2004). This is the result out of “the desire for freedom, for loose bonds that we can escape from if we so choose and for individualism” (Giddens, 2006, p. 244). Semi- detached couples, SDCs in “top pocket relationships” are the results from these contradictions (Giddens, 2006). This form of relationship means that it can be taken out from the pocket when needed or vice versa. SDCs can enjoy the fun moments with each other such as texting and email, however they will stay detached enough to avoid from being involved in complex emotional matters. Nevertheless, there is a contradiction by Bauman that in liquid love, humans seek for tightening of bonds to assure for the greater security between ourselves and also our partners. This is why for those couples that desire to tighten their bonds in online dating would go for another stage of life,…show more content…
According to this theory, nature of love is changing fundamentally and it can create either opportunities for democracy or chaos in life (Beck & Beck- Gernsheim, 1995). Love, family and personal freedom are three key elements in this theory. This theory states that the guidelines, rules and traditions which used to rule personal relationships have changed. “Individuals are now confronted with an endless series of choices as part of constructing, adjusting, improving or dissolving the unions they form with others” (Giddens, 2006). For instance, marriage nowadays depends on the willingness of the couples rather than for economic purposes or the urge to form family. However, these transformations have also brought freedoms and tensions as there are also high divorce rates underneath high marriage rates. The contradiction of interests among love, family and freedom has affected the perspective of relationships nowadays and hence people need to recognise their priority of personal

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