Supporting Women in Online Dating with a Messaging Interface that Improves their Face-to-Face Meeting Decisions

Douglas Zytko, Victor Regalado, Nicholas Furlo, Sukeshini A. Grandhi, Quentin Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


This paper presents a study of a messaging interface prototype for online dating intended to improve women's face-to-face meeting decisions, and therefore the capacity to manage the gendered risks involved with such meetings. The interface prompts users with discussion topics that are potentially more valuable for user evaluation than the impression management-motivated topics often chosen by men. These topics come in the form of first-date scenarios that messaging partners either agree or disagree on. Through a mixed-methods study utilizing speed dating events, daters used the interface to interact before meeting face-to-face. Results indicate that women's face-to-face meeting decisions improve when the interface prompts them to discuss scenarios involving agreement of opinion. Men's decisions are worsened by the same interface variant, potentially due to the displayed agreement being misinterpreted as a signal of compatibility. The study ultimately stresses that designs intended for women, and at-risk groups more broadly, must also be assessed with other user demographics-namely those that pose a risk-to identify unforeseen implications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number137
JournalProceedings of the ACM on Human-Computer Interaction
Issue numberCSCW2
StatePublished - Oct 14 2020
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Networks and Communications


  • dating apps
  • feminist hci
  • impression management
  • online dating
  • risk
  • safety
  • sexual violence
  • social matching
  • women


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