Recently, the use of online dating appears to be an increasingly common and effective means for single gay adults to pursue online dating for the hope to build romantic relationships. Yet, little is known about the strategies of their self-presentations for the purposes of marketing themselves and the intentions underlying the designs of photos and words on their introductory profiles. Age comes into the picture when considering how becoming older than the majority of the users of online dating applications could compromise ones’ values in the dating market and how this could be a potential cause to variations in the ways to presenting one’s gay identities. This study aimed to investigate the differences in the ways older (above 40 years old) and younger (younger 40 years old) gay adults project their gay identities and also their dating intentions on their online dating profiles. Results revealed that older gay adults seemed to highlight men’s desires for physical attractiveness and sexuality, using photos to display their bodies while younger counterparts focused more on promoting their personal nature with photos suggestive of their hobbies or interests to invite potential romantic partners, rather than addressing sex-oriented intentions. In sum, those gay adults who are relatively older seem to demonstrate more aggressive self-presentation styles while those who are younger show sincerer and more friendship-oriented tones in their self-introductions. The implications and explanations of the results are presented in the conclusion.
Chin-Hui Chen, National Pingtung University of Science and Technology, Taiwan
Ming-Ze Li, National Pingtung University of Science and Technology, Taiwan