When Britney Spears crooned "I'm not a girl, not yet a woman," she probably didn't know that the virtual dating landscape would favor the former. If we weren't already bombarded with unsolicited prescriptions for how to behave online, now we're supposed to consider whether calling ourselves "women" is worth the opportunity costs.
Apparently, referring to yourself as a "girl" instead of a "woman" in your online dating profile will get you more male suitors.
This helpful information comes from an infographics series published on Wired earlier this month, which focused on what words earn online daters the most attention. Researchers collected data across OKCupid and Match.com.
According to the findings, females who refer to themselves as "girls" receive 16 percent more attention than those who refer to themselves as "women" in their profiles. Meanwhile, it is 28 percent better for men to refer to a member of the opposite sex as a "woman" than a "girl." So it's super sexy and evolved for men to call us women, but off-putting for a lady to refer to herself as such.
What if grown-ass women went around saying they were looking for "boys"? They would be universally considered creepy, if not predatory. Perhaps men find self-professed "women" threatening? Sigh. We know they'll catch up someday.
As per usual, these statistics offer some interesting insight into how courtship is performed in the 21st century. But do we actually care about a 16-point potential loss for properly labeling ourselves? Not really. We'll stick with Bey on this one.