Today online dating is the second most common way for a heterosexual couple to meet and the most common for homosexual couples.
So Josue Ortega, from the University of Essex, UK, and Philipp Hergovich, from the University of Vienna, Austria, decided it was time to explore how it affects society.
After all, people are less likely to form a romantic relationship with a close friend and more likely to date a person connected to their friendship group, or someone they met at a bar, at work, or college.
There's been a huge shift in dating culture in the last two decades.
'Online dating is a start, usually followed by the standard romantic courtship, like dates, going dancing, going out together, and so on.'Online dating can have some negative sides, but the fact that exposes us to people outside our networks is definitely a big plus.' This new way of meeting sets up social links that were previously rare – such as interracial couples, according to the researchers.
He told Mail Online: 'I do not think meeting someone on Tinder is much different than meeting them in a bar.
Adding links was also found to increase the strength of marriages in society.
In a new study, Dr Josue Ortega from the University of Essex and Mr Philipp Hergovich from the University of Vienna looked at the effect online dating is having on society.
Researchers suggest that this new way of looking for love is connecting communities in novel ways, and even leads to more interracial marriage (stock image)In their study, the researchers simulated what happened when extra links are introduced into a social network made up of men and women from different races.
In the network, everyone wants to marry a person of the opposite sex, but can only marry someone who they have a connection with.
This leads to a society with low levels of interracial marriage.