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One in ten Americans have used an online dating site or mobile dating app themselves, and many people now know someone else who uses online dating or who has found a spouse or long-term partner via online dating.

General public attitudes towards online dating have become much more positive in recent years, and social networking sites are now playing a prominent role when it comes to navigating and documenting romantic relationships.

People in nearly every major demographic group—old and young, men and women, urbanites and rural dwellers—are more likely to know someone who uses online dating (or met a long term partner through online dating) than was the case eight years ago.

And this is especially true for those at the upper end of the socio-economic spectrum: Even as online daters have largely positive opinions of the process, many have had negative experiences using online dating.

Overall, respondents preferred free sites like Ok Cupid, Tinder and Grindr over paid sites like Match and e Harmony, in part because of the value.

The now infamous infidelity dating site Ashley Madison, which was one of the most expensive, was also the lowest-scoring online dating service, with a score of 37.

"Unlike shopping for a bank or a refrigerator, in the case of online dating, the refrigerator has to like you back," Gilman said.

"There is a different level of exposure to disappointment and that's captured in the poor overall scores." Once considered taboo, online dating is now a socially accepted and booming multibillion dollar business that continues to grow.On Valentine's Day, some singles may be inspired to step up their dating game. Amy Giberson, now 34, was reluctant to try internet dating again but she decided to give it one more shot in 2014. There are a slew of sites and apps to help singles find love and, for the most part, they work, according to Consumer Reports.She downloaded the Match app and connected with Justin Pounders, also 34, almost immediately. Nearly half, or 44 percent, of those who tried online dating said it led to a serious long-term relationship or marriage, the magazine found.In general, online daters themselves give the experience high marks.Some 79% of online daters agree that online dating is a good way to meet people, and 70% of them agree that it helps people find a better romantic match because they have access to a wide range of potential partners.Half (54%) of online daters have felt that someone else seriously misrepresented themselves in their profile.

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