hinged scalloped shell

No longer confined to physical premises, the market is now borderless, fluid, and digitized, with shopping (and especially in the pandemic age, work as well) something we increasingly do from home. In the twenty-first century, shopping no longer looks like inspecting physical goods on display, but scrolling through images on a screen. Eating out no longer looks like gathering in a restaurant, but selecting from options on a screen and awaiting delivery. So it is too with the search for a mate: just like Amazon or Deliveroo, online dating profiles have an image and product description. In the act of digitizing human intimacy as options that can be keyword-searched, browsed, selected, and consumed, dating websites invite us to consider the search for love as just another marketplace.

Who profits when our hunger for love is monetized?