Love in lockdown: How Covid-19 redefined dating norms

Online dating was not confined by space or time.

WALA ABDUL MUIZ
WALA ABDUL MUIZ
18 May 2024 10:00am
The Covid-19 pandemic has significantly altered dating patterns. Photo for illustrative purposes only - Canva
The Covid-19 pandemic has significantly altered dating patterns. Photo for illustrative purposes only - Canva
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SHAH ALAM - The Covid-19 pandemic has significantly altered dating patterns, with online dating becoming increasingly prominent.

Sociologist Associate Professor Mohd Azlan Mohd Noor commented on these changes, noting that online dating was not confined by space or time.

“It is timeless and borderless. The main issue during the pandemic was about distance and space. Online dating created an effective medium of communication between individuals separated by these constraints,” he said.

Azlan also said that today, arranged marriages and child marriages were becoming less common, especially as Millennials and Generation Z embraced technological advancements.

The generational shift has normalised online dating culture.

However, Azlan expressed concerns about this trend as he highlighted the need for effective parental monitoring to protect minors from scams and other risks associated with online dating.

Infidelity, he said, was another risk, necessitating mechanisms to curb social deviance.

“We are moving towards a digital society, and our fears are compounded by the advent of AI, which may introduce AI partners to address issues like loneliness and marital conflict,” he said, adding that the future is unpredictable.

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“At this stage, I believe religion should be a reference and authority to help future generations resolve any conflicts arising from online dating and marriage,” he concluded.

Meanwhile, another sociologist Associate Prof Dr Rosila Bee Mohd Hussein voiced concerns about the future generation and how dating would continue to evolve in the future.

“This year marks the end of Generation Alpha. We don't know how Generation Beta will navigate online dating, but it could become a trend.

“The length of relationships, online or offline, remains subjective. At the end of the day, it’s a balance of pros and cons,” she said.

Just like Azlan, Rosila also pointed out the risk of virtual cheating, which she said was easier done online, such as dating multiple people on various apps simultaneously.