Archives—No Wrong Answers in Love

Data-Mate's Personality Compatiblity Questionnaire

Long before single people began searching for their love match through online dating services, data research companies existed to help the lovelorn weed through the masses. In particular, in the late 1960s, two companies in St. Louis—Data-Mate, Inc. and Computer Data Research Corporation—developed personality questionnaires to assist in locating "ideal" matches.

Questionnaire for Computer Data Research Corp.

For $5, a man or woman would complete the Computer Data Research Group questionnaire, send it in, and then wait anxiously for the postman to deliver the important envelope containing a customized list of matches. Some of the more amusing queries pertain to the applicant's own perception of themselves. For example, one of the questions is, Most people consider me: 1. Not attractive, 2. Average, 3. Fairly attractive, or 4. Very attractive. On the flip side, the applicant must decide if they would prefer their date be unattractive or very attractive.

Data-Mate's questionnaire categorized general interests, special preferences (i.e., looks, religion, education), and character traits, as well as asked applicants to rank who they admired most: Henry Ford, Ernest Hemingway, Thomas Edison, or Stan Musial.

Today's computer dating services have streamlined the process, but nothing's changed that much: the heart wants what it wants!