The Year after we were meant to be making love

Psychologists Emma and Tomas talk about how science is important when it comes to matchmaking and we see how the couples were matched for the Year of Making Love.

Right its over… 6 episodes of BBC Three TV episodes. It couldn’t have gone so well because on the 4th episode, it got shifted around in the schedule and in the end I had to find it on iPlayer to finish off the series.

The last episode does have a look back and goes considers the science a little more but frankly lets talk maths (bear in mind I never studied it beyond GCSEs)…

Originally it was meant to be 1000 single people matched to 500 couples. That didn’t happen so it was roughly 300 couples matched on the big day and then who knows how many couples were matched afterwards to make up the original 500 couples. However! we don’t know that for sure because there’s never been any data released about it. So lets say 500 couples matched over a few months…

Out of the 500 couples which were matched, about 20+ of them made it to the screen. Most ended after the first date or soon after. Only 3 made it through a year  and are still together now? Funny enough out of the 3 which did make it. 2 of them are from the later matches not the original match day. Tweak to the algorithm?

So frankly 500 to 3 is a terrible result! I mean would you sign up to a dating site where 166 people need to get in touch before you find one worth following (would you?). 1/166.666 is pretty bad odds! And we don’t know if they changed the questionnaire or changed the formula half way through? I certainly didn’t fill in 100’s of questions. You can’t claim scientific if its certainly not…

I’m sure (heard) there are others who are still together but we never saw them. It could be because they weren’t attractive enough to be on TV? or maybe there were no one else? Another question for the programme commissioners.

To be frank, the odds are maybe better if you go down your local deansgates lock, big market, etc and try pulling people. Heck a lot less people would be hurt or have there hopes raised

I’ve dated a lot but I guarantee you if I was to date 166 people on OKCupid I would be in a serious relationship now. I do understand what Emma and Tomas are saying about the one but unforgivably the programme didn’t back up there thoughts. Even Emma shouts at one point, how people are too busy considering the looks not the person. The thing they hadn’t considered or calculated in to the theory was Chemistry. Chemistry is important… and no ones quite got that part figured out, no matter what anyone says

Someone should really do a proper scientific trial… and give up some data about how it went. Maybe I’ll ask around to see if there’s any anonymous data we can get from the year of making love?

Author: Ianforrester

Senior firestarter at BBC R&D, emergent technology expert and serial social geek event organiser.