Besides photographs, each user's profile could include any number of personal details including age, height, weight, education, marital status, number of children, and smoking and drinking habits.
The data set includes some 1.1 million interactions between users.
But beyond someone's looks, how much do any of these factors matter for mate selection?
Then comes the choice to send a person a message, or to reply to one.
And of course, the final, crucial decision, which isn't captured by these data: whether to meet the person in the real world.
Bruch's team devised a statistical model that maps the "decision rules" people follow during the first two steps.
Bruch and her team divided the rules into two broad categories, "deal breakers" and "deal makers," used to exclude or include people for the next level of contact.
Bruch wondered: Is mate selection like a job interview process, where the person with the best combination of positive factors wins?
Or is it more like a -style reality show, where contestants are picked off one by one for a single failing?
When it comes to the early stage of dating, it seems to be all about the deal breakers.
For one, prospective daters were wary of proceeding sight unseen.
When you’re online dating, why do you swipe left on one person and swipe right on another?