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via GIPHY Not to mention, the metric they were using to gauge a male dater’s profile effectiveness (“women met per attempt”) is a wildly varying and unbounded metric; one guy with a particularly interesting photo that gets one unsolicited message per day could have easily made their whole result. In data science, we know it can be difficult to find consistent trends even between visitors of the same website from one week to the next.Is it likely that trends found among a very specific niche of male daters long ago — those who chose to upload only one photo and no profile text to Ok Cupid in 2009 — could translate to a viable Tinder strategy for all men in 2017?So the opinions on our site were translating directly into behavior.We decided it was time for someone to challenge the Ok Cupid study. To put it frankly, data can be manipulated to show practically any result that the scientist would like it to.After all, Ok Cupid’s findings were based on behavior, not just talk, right? Like everyone else, we believed in Ok Cupid’s conclusions. But every time we looked into this, we found the same thing: daters who used Photofeeler for photo testing were getting right-swipes like never before.

We narrowed the demographics of our data set accordingly, matching their 7,140-photo sample. Ok Cupid used a sample of 7,140 photographs from users aged 18-32, in big cities, possessing average attractiveness (that is, they lopped off the top and bottom 20%), and who had profiles containing only one photo and no text. Why did they eliminate users who were most and least attractive?

Perhaps it’s this personality type (not the photo’s characteristics out of context) that speak to which photo strategies worked best for him.

Finally, let’s chat for a moment about what happens when a highly popular dating site disseminates misinformation about what works best in guy’s dating pics: a new class of male dating photos is born.

Fact is, these avoidant photos just didn’t exist before the 2010 Ok Cupid study.

Before this advice was made popular by Ok Cupid, the only instances of not smiling and not making eye contact were at least somewhat contextually relevant. OKCupid’s study on male dating photos did not pass the reproducibility test in 2017.

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