Love and keyboards
One more thought on the changes that digital communications have wrought on old-fashioned romance, and the hand-wringing commentary that emerges mostly from conservative quarters: We're seeing, in part, the conflict between social conservatism to economic conservatism. Old modes of courtship are giving way to a faster, freer, fairer market, where transaction costs have fallen and participants have better information and competition is fiercer. In this market, supposedly rational actors make supposedly rational decisions and then reap the rewards or bear the consequences. New technologies such as cellphones and online dating are helping the market overwhelm older, less "efficient" norms.
In the aggregate, that's good. The world in which your parents chose a mate, or in which you hopefully met someone at a mixer, didn't work well for the person with socially inattentive parents or poor dance skills. People date differently, and a world with more options is better for more people than a world with less options. But people worry about this market for the same reason they worry about financial markets, and for the same reason they weren't satisfied with the old ways. It doesn't matter how efficient the transactions, how full the information, how robust the competition and how involved the community. The central actors here are still human beings, and they have a tendency to screw up even the best plans.
Posted by: Sophomore | November 4, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse
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