You can send it to someone and then it looks like the other person is just writing incredibly long.

That’s pretty psychological.

Total. I also joke in my book that the geniuses behind AOL and all the other early internet service providers must have figured out how to use our desire for love and sex to make us addicted to the internet. All of our emotions are now tied to it. Just think about the emotional fluctuations you go through waiting for someone to send you a message – it’s also due to our reliance on these technologies. In the past we would have waited for the phone to finally ring.

There’s this running gag on Twitter about: “The feeling when someone likes your tweet but doesn’t reply to your message.”

I have a friend who is from China and is studying at Yale. She’s a great student and totally determined. She once told me that she was on a date and he didn’t reply to her messages afterwards. I told her that maybe he just had to work and she said, “He tweeted. I don’t even follow him on Twitter, but I know anyway. “I thought to myself, if someone as smart and sensible as she is is like this, everyone must be like that.

Could it be that it is also about wanting to please others? You don’t really hear that often from men who complain that a woman isn’t writing back.

One thing that a lot of straight male friends have told me is that they are addicted to Tinder and Tinder is like a video game to them. I suspect there are fewer and fewer people who sit down and analyze the news, but I definitely know men who get completely crazy about it.

In your book you also write about the time at the beginning of the 20th century, when women started going to work and suddenly met more men than ever before. The internet seems to have had a similar effect, but it has also left us with an overwhelming and basically infinite number of options – you could always meet someone better. That thought seems to drive a lot of people.

That is the famous agony of choice. In many ways it is good to have an almost infinite choice, for example when you are back on the market after a divorce. I think it actually has real benefits that are sometimes not valued enough. But yes, it also makes the decision more difficult for some people.

How do you feel about “date nights” in steady relationships?

I am fascinated by this idea. In my book, I also come across the film Date Night with Steve Carrell and Tina Fey – not a particularly good film, actually. It’s about this boring couple who live in Jersey and don’t have sex anymore, blah blah blah. Then one of your date nights goes badly wrong: You go to this fancy restaurant and there is a mix-up. You take a seat at the wrong table and end up in the business of some gangsters. The high point of the film is that she has to play a prostitute and he has to play a pimp — the date becomes real business. Somehow the film manages to get all the expectations of a date to the point: It’s about being in public and being able to present a certain side of yourself. This strange business character about it makes a lot of people feel uncomfortable, but at the same time it is also somehow the attraction of a date.

I also wonder if part of it isn’t just about showing yourself sexy to people. There’s always something exciting when another person flirts with your partner at a party or when you flirt with someone else yourself. In addition, at some point I read that date nights are said to have been created on the initiative of a city. The city is said to have advertised date nights to stimulate the economy. That means: people should go out to buy things.

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