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Half of this group (representing 12% of all teens with dating experience, or 4% of all American teens) have met just one romantic partner online, while the other half have met more than one partner online. And so she told him that it was the wrong address because he asked her. Boys and girls are equally likely to friend a potential partner on another friend’s recommendation.

One-quarter (24%) of teen “daters” or roughly 8% of all teens have dated or hooked up with someone they first met online.

This study reveals that the digital realm is one part of a broader universe in which teens meet, date and break up with romantic partners.

Online spaces are used infrequently for meeting romantic partners, but play a major role in how teens flirt, woo and communicate with potential and current flames. 10 through March 16, 2015; 16 online and in-person focus groups with teens were conducted in April 2014 and November 2014.

A majority of teens with dating experience (76%, or 26% of all teens) say they have only dated people they met via in-person methods. One-in-five (20%) of all teens have used their social networks to find new partners by following or friending someone because a friend suggested they might want to date them.

Still, a quarter of teen daters (24%, or 8% of all teens) have dated or hooked up with someone they first met online. Older teens are more likely to do this than younger ones; 23% of 15- to 17-year-olds have followed someone at a friend’s behest for dating purposes, while 15% of 13- and 14-year-olds have done so.