MARKETWATCH - Jan 6 - In the New Year, the online dating industry sees a surge in users. Zoosk typically sees a 20% jump in users in the first two weeks of the year and eHarmony sees a similar increase. Grindr and other gay apps usually experiences a 30% to 50% increase in users. Match.com sees a 60% surge in new members between Christmas Day and Valentine's Day. "Many singles sit around the family dinner table during the holidays and think, 'Maybe it would be better to have a partner'," said Mark Brooks, editor of Online Personals Watch. "That's when they start hitting dating sites in droves and go on dates before the indigestion sets in." It may also be more polite to arrange dates in the New Year rather than during the holidays, especially with family around. "They're going to be around for you long after your relationships," he says. With the constant stream of happy holiday photographs over social-networking sites, experts say the pressure to be in a romance this time of year has never been so intense. "There's an onslaught of images of family and togetherness," says Pepper Schwartz, author of "Dating After 50 for Dummies" and a love and relationship ambassador for AARP.
by Quentin Fottrell
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