Ironically, even though white gay men respond to messages in general less frequently than gay men of color they fail to attract the highest rate of responses to the messages they send.Middle Eastern gay men, on average, will receive about 48 responses for every 100 messages they send, while white gay men will receive an average of 45. Response rates vary by race less among lesbian women on Ok Cupid than gay men.They can cause some queer men of color to feel undesirable, which in turn can pressure some queer men of color to lie about their racial/ethnic identity in order to attract attention.It is troubling to see racial hierarchies reified in online queer dating spaces because queer people should know better.For instance, one white man asked him, “Do you wanna make a white man your slave?” Another white man refused to believe he was Black, citing his “Chinese-looking eyes.” These are just a few stories that illustrate the effects of racism within online dating communities comprising mostly gay men.These data illustrate that one’s race/ethnicity affects one’s romantic and sexual value in queer communities. Ok Cupid’s data sheds light on casual racism in queer online dating communities, but overt racism is also prevalent.
He waits until he meets someone to reveal his real name and racial/ethnic identity because men sometimes stop talking to him when they find out he’s partly Indian.
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White gay men also respond less frequently to messages in general than gay men of color.
On Ok Cupid white gay men respond to messages from all races at an average rate of 41.4%, but gay men of color respond to messages from all races at an average rate of 49.3%.