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Apparently, I wasn’t alone in my Valentine’s Day depression-induced hunt for Prince Charming.

Experts say online dating sites see a huge traffic increase between Christmas and Valentine’s Day.

Valentine’s Day was approaching, and this city of more than eight million people was feeling oddly lonely.

With some goading from a friend — who somehow convinced me that the stigma against online dating was no more — I joined Ok Cupid and started scanning the thousands of matches that popped up on my screen.

"Online dating doesn't change my taste, or how I behave on a first date, or if I will be a good partner.

It only changes the process of discovery," says Mehr in Dan Slater's new book "Love in the Time of Algorithms: What Technology Does to Meeting and Mating." (Slater notes that Mehr was the only dating exec he interviewed who felt this way.)It’s the efficiency of this “process of discovery” that’s appealing to many daters.

“[Sites like] Ok Cupid give people a mechanism to combat the anxiety of being single,” said Ana B., 24 of New York City.

“Maybe it’s not the best means to the end of finding the best relationship, but it gives people a way to do something about their situation.

The question is: Are those first dates and relationships really any different from connections made in more traditional ways? Even though the number of budding Internet relationships is increasing, the overall rate of partnership is not increasing at all.

This suggests that online dating is proving to be no more effective at creating lasting relationships than the old standards.“I really didn’t see it as any different from the way that people met each other for decades past," said Feifer. creates a relationship, is not the Other daters agreed, and so does Alex Mehr, a co-founder of the dating site Zoosk.

The strongest predictors of a good, functional relationship are how a couple interacts, and their ability to handle stress — two things that science says current dating website algorithms can't predict and online profiles can't demonstrate.

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