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In response to the real and imagined pressures that brought about such terms, there has been a boom in online match-making platforms in the last ten years, with top sites including and claiming they can turn a profit by doing cupid one better. But recent refinancing announcements call such claims into question: In 2014, reportedly generated RMB298 million (US.93 million) in revenue, a loss of RMB36.68 million.

To remedy this deficiency we conducted research entailing a series of in-depth interviews with single women and men aged 27-40 to learn more about what makes them tick—and what ticks them off. But beyond the perception that such services were unnecessary we found other reasons behind the popular aversion.

The clearest and most important reason many have never used online dating services is because they have no desire to do so. Matters of trust came up frequently, particularly when it came to the information in user profiles. Wang (28) said she avoided dating sites because she really didn’t believe personal information on such sites, and a male interviewee, Mr.

Yang (28), said he agreed it could be completely made up: "People can artificially build up fantastic images of themselves and develop virtual relationships online, but these aren't helpful in reality," he said.

Researchers Lin Shi and Florian Kohlbacher from the International Business School Suzhou (IBSS) at Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU) explain popular perceptions among China's single men and women toward online match-making services—and the accompanying business opportunities and challenges presented by China’s social norms.

For those keeping an eye on China's economy, it's clear the country is suffering from oversupply it doesn't know how to deal with—but not just in steel and coal.

While demographics indicate that China's current gender imbalance will only get worse in the coming decades, there are actually a large number of women and men who can't seem to find their other half.Some are unfairly branded ‘leftover women’ or ‘bare branches’ by state media and the commercial press.These labels arose in part from the general expectation in much of China that the proper age for marriage falls between 25 and 27-years-old, though this may be moderating somewhat in cities like Beijing, Shanghai, and Shenzhen.Even so, officialdom has tacitly approved the term ‘leftover women,’ officially defined in 2007 as one of 171 new words that year by the education ministry as those who are single and over the age of 27.Such women are stereotyped as highly educated high-earners whose standards for potential spouses are relatively high.In contrast, ‘bare branches’ refers to older Chinese men without spouses, though the term lacks the government-decreed definition of its female counterpart.

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