The chances of 'running' into your true love are more on the Internet than at work or at a park - especially if you're over 45.
That's the conclusion of a Harris Interactive online survey, which reviewed more than 10,000 people who married in the US during an 18-month period in 2006 and 2007.
"Wanting to get married and not going online will soon be seen as equivalent to trying to find an address by driving around randomly, rather than using a map," the New Scientist quoted Galen Buckwalter of eHarmony, the online matchmaking company in Pasadena, California, that sponsored the survey, as saying.
Nineteen per cent of the couples met online, according to the survey, compared with 17 per cent who met at work and 17 per cent who met through friends.
In the current survey, 31 per cent of married couples aged 45 to 54 met online, against 18 per cent of 20 to 44-year-olds. Younger people may find it easier to meet potential partners through other avenues, such as college.
As online dating spreads, so will techniques to help people gauge the attractiveness of potential mates, says Andrew Fiore, who studies online dating at the University of California, Berkeley.
"People aren't that great at describing themselves accurately, so expect more experiential online dating activities and games that help you get to know someone," Andrew said.