Executive Summary

In the 1990s, dating practice in the traditional sense began to adapt to daily life through websites such as Siberalem or and digital platforms intermediaries. Since the mid-2000s, online dating applications such as Tinder, Bumble, and OkCupid, which have become popular today, have brought the dating phenomenon to the digital space. This situation has started to come to the fore in different contexts for social sciences literature and the media, especially in recent years.

On the one hand, online dating raises concerns regarding safety and the loss of the authenticity of romantic relationships. On the other hand, it has a liberating potential in the context of providing the opportunity for self-expression and social interaction. The fact that social, cultural, and economic variables play a role in different approaches to online dating practices also requires a discussion of the media’s role in analyzing this phenomenon. 

From this point of view, this report aims to reveal the context in which online dating and dating applications are in the news in Turkey. A three-stage analysis was carried out by searching keywords on Google News. First, the diversity of news sources and the periods were examined. Secondly, discourse and intonation contours in the news were coded as positive, negative, or neutral. Third and lastly, in line with the most repetitive contexts and discourse, the contents were analyzed across six categories.

As a result of the study, it is observed that online dating is often addressed with a negative discourse in the context of romance scams, and dating apps are positioned as a threat in this context. In addition, the emphasis on the role of dating apps in the transformation of romantic relationships gives the impression that technology has been placed at the center of social life. It is also noteworthy that gender is rarely an angle in reporting of online dating and dating apps, while LGBTI+ people or queer relationships are not mentioned in the news at all.

About Researcher

Dr. Serra Sezgin


Serra Sezgin, Ph.D. is Assistant Professor and head of the New Media and Communication Department at Ankara Science University since 2020. She received her M.Sc. in Communication Sciences from Hacettepe University (2013) and holds a Ph.D. in Journalism from Ankara University (2019). Her doctoral thesis has been published as an e-book Digital Games Ecosystem: Creative Industry and Labor (Alternative Informatics Association, 2020). Her research and publications focus on new media, creative industries, labor, and game studies.