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Unlike in first-tier cities like Beijing and Shanghai, where new trends emerge and quickly permeate society, Zhou was considered an early adopter in the second-tier city Yantai in Shandong Province when she began online dating in the early 2010s. When 30-year-old auto sales manager Zhou Yixin joined online dating at the behest of her cousin living in Beijing, she did not expect to meet her steady boyfriend of two years.“We’re looking for people who are more relationship-driven,” says Liu.
When Zhou’s parents played matchmaker for her, she felt that if she didn’t like the guys chosen by her parents, it would lead to arguments where her parents blamed her for being “too picky.” Dating apps in China instead empower the individual where life is catching up with the law.
In addition to these laws, China’s Open Door Policy of 1978, which began to expose Chinese to outside cultural influences, further destabilized traditional customs.
More young Chinese took the initiative, many driven by romantic love, to seek potential spouses in their circles through school, work, social gatherings or mutual friends.
Put more simply, an American asks, ‘How does my heart feel?
’ whereas a Chinese individual tended to ask, ‘What will other people say?