Adult friend search
Yes, the opportunities for blackmail and sleazy tabloid newspaper headlines are obvious.It’s easy for those of us who would never consider signing up for a site like Adult Friend Finder to smirk at the users’ discomfort, but we shouldn’t forget that both they and the Adult Friend Finder website itself are victims of a criminal act.Genetic similarity among friendship networks is important for at least two reasons.First, social networks can influence mating markets, so genetic similarity among friends may be one source of genetic similarity among spouses.Analysis of spousal genotypes suggests that spouses are more genetically similar to one another compared with random pairs of individuals in the population (3–9). In previous analyses, we estimated that genetic homogamy was about one-third the magnitude of educational homogamy (3), even when specifically examining education-associated genotypes (8).
Adult friends are, on average, more genetically similar than random pairs from the population (13).As part of the survey, students were asked to list the names of their friends.Responses were collated within schools to identify social ties between individuals and their friends (24).Although there is some evidence that friends have correlated genotypes, both at the whole-genome level as well as at trait-associated loci (via polygenic scores), further analysis suggests that meso-level forces, such as school assignment, are a principal source of genetic similarity between friends.
We also observe apparent social–genetic effects in which polygenic scores of an individual’s friends and schoolmates predict the individual’s own educational attainment.In a national sample of more than 5,000 American adolescents, we found evidence of social forces that act to make friends and schoolmates more genetically similar to one another compared with random pairs of unrelated individuals.This subtle genetic similarity was observed across the entire genome and at sets of genomic locations linked with specific traits—educational attainment and body mass index—a phenomenon we term “social–genetic correlation.” We also find evidence of a “social–genetic effect” such that the genetics of a person’s friends and schoolmates influenced their own education, even after accounting for the person’s own genetics.Recent research has evaluated the possibility that unobserved genotypes may play an important role in the creation of homophilous relationships.