Substantially fewer reported using the Internet for the specific purposes of identifying potential sexual or marital partners." Faye Mishna, Alan Mc Luckie, and Michael Saini, co-authors of the Oxford Journal article Real-World Dangers in an Online Reality: A Qualitative Study Examining Online Relationships and Cyber Abuse, reported the results of their research and observation of over 35,000 individuals between the ages of 6 and 24 who have been or currently are a part of an internet relationship.Of the final 346 posts chosen to be included in the study, the average age of online users sharing information about their online relationship(s) was 14 years old.Other ways of communicating online with these devices are via services and applications such as Email, Skype, i Chat, instant messaging programs, social networking services, asynchronous discussion groups, online games, virtual worlds and the World Wide Web.Some of these ways of communicating online are asynchronous (meaning not in real time), such as You Tube and some are synchronous (immediate communication), such as Twitter.Although the availability of uploading videos to the internet is not a new innovation, it has been made easier since 2008 thanks to You Tube.
Dating sites "are a place where sexual minorities, inter-sexed people and gay people are enjoying a newly found freedom".The overwhelming result was that children and youth consider their online relationships to be just as "real" as their offline relationships.The study also showed that the internet plays a crucial role in most sexual and romantic experiences of adolescent users.Newer and more advanced sites offer the possibility of streaming media live via the user's profile for the site.The inclusion of videos and pictures has become almost a necessity for sexual social networking sites to maintain the loyalty of their members.
They have the ability to venture outside of their comfort zone and act as someone completely different. They concluded that "when asked what they were looking for in an online relationship, the considerable majority of participants expressed interest in seeking fun, companionship, and someone to talk to.