Online dating economics
But while the situation for women is something like an economy with some poor, some middle class, and some millionaires, the situation for men is closer to a world with a small number of super-billionaires surrounded by huge masses who possess almost nothing.
According to the Hinge analyst: On a list of 149 countries’ Gini indices provided by the CIA World Factbook, this would place the female dating economy as 75th most unequal (average—think Western Europe) and the male dating economy as the 8th most unequal (kleptocracy, apartheid, perpetual civil war—think South Africa).
And finally, there is a type of inequality that everyone thinks about occasionally and that young single people obsess over almost constantly: inequality of sexual attractiveness..
If we follow a few steps of his reasoning, we can imagine the world of dating as something like an economy, in which people possess different amounts of attractiveness (the dating economy’s version of dollars) and those with more attractiveness can access more and better romantic experiences (the dating economy’s version of consumer goods).
The inequality between rich and poor, and its causes and remedies, are discussed ad nauseam in public policy debates, campaign platforms, and social media screeds.
However, the relentless focus on inequality among politicians is usually quite narrow: they tend to consider inequality only in monetary terms, and to treat “inequality” as basically synonymous with “income inequality.” There are so many other types of inequality that get air time less often or not at all: inequality of talent, height, number of friends, longevity, inner peace, health, charm, gumption, intelligence, and fortitude.
This is because heterosexual men and heterosexual women essentially occupy two distinct “economies” or “worlds,” with men competing only with each other for women and women competing only with each other for men.
Some enterprising data nerds have taken on the challenge of estimating Gini coefficients for the dating “economy.” Among heterosexuals, this actually means calculating two Gini coefficients: one for men, and one for women.This is simply a number between zero and one that is meant to represent the degree of income inequality in any given nation or group.An egalitarian group in which each individual has the same income would have a Gini coefficient of zero, while an unequal group in which one individual had all the income and the rest had none would have a Gini coefficient close to one.Social commentators today are very interested in “gender gaps,” especially the alleged difference in pay between men and women who do the same work.There are other notable gaps, including a “libido gap” that is well-documented in scientific literature (with men desiring sex much more frequently and intensely than women on average) and also an “age gap” in which younger adults are described as more attractive on average, with an especially large age disadvantage for older women.