WASHINGTON POST - Aug 8 - A study in the journal Science Advances described "a hierarchy of desirability" in the messaging tactics of online daters. It also found that both men and women messaged potential partners who were on average 25% more attractive than they were. The study analyzed heterosexual dating markets in an unnamed "popular, free online dating service" in four major U.S. cities: Boston, Chicago, New York and Seattle. Desirability was defined by the number of messages someone received as well as the desirability of the people sending those messages. In this study, white men and Asian women ranked highest for desirability. Men wrote more first messages than women, and women were less likely to respond to a message. Men and women also wrote longer messages to potential dates who were more desirable. Older women are less desirable, while older men are more so.