But the fear that online dating is changing us, collectively, that it's creating unhealthy habits and preferences that aren't in our best interests, is being driven more by paranoia than it is by actual facts.
"There are a lot of theories out there about how online dating is bad for us," Michael Rosenfeld, a sociologist at Stanford who has been conducting a long-running study of online dating, told me the other day.
People used to marry in their early 20s, which meant that most dating that was done, or most courting that was done, was done with the intention of settling down right away.
And that’s not the life that young people lead anymore.
In fact, people who meet their partners online are not more likely to break up — they don’t have more transitory relationships.
Once you’re in a relationship with somebody, it doesn’t really matter how you met that other person.
The interview has been edited for length and clarity.
I wondered to myself, is this what online dating has done to us?
A couple of months ago, I was sitting at a bar minding my own business when the woman next to me did something strange.
Surrounded by potential partners, she pulled out her phone, hid it coyly beneath the counter, and opened the online dating app Tinder.
It’s harder to feel alone when you’re 23, because everyone is a potential partner.
But when you get to 40, most people your age are already settled down.