Currently the market has been segmented out to an ever larger number of sites focused on an ever-smaller niche audiences.

In 1700, barely a decade after the invention of the modern newspaper, the first matrimonial service was created.

These services ran ads on behalf of single men and women who were desperate to find a good husband or wife.

Of course, the use of the Web to find romantic partners should surprise no one.

Perhaps more than any other revolution in communication, the use of the Web for dating makes sense.

The end result is that, according to Online Dating Magazine, nearly 20 million people visit at least one online dating site every month and 120,000 marriages every year take place, at least in part, due to online dating.

In 2002, Wired Magazine predicted that, “Twenty years from now, the idea that someone looking for love won’t look for it online will be silly, akin to skipping the card catalog to instead wander the stacks because ‘the right books are found only by accident.'” The prediction does not seem to be that far off as it is exactly where we are heading with both online dating and social networking.

The stigma of online dating has been slowly lifting, due in large part to the rise of social networking.

Though the majority of marriages still meet through more traditional means, nearly everyone on the Web has met someone or made a friend online.

Social networking carried with it a much smaller stigma, since it is also used by those not seeking a partner at all.