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winedateNew Scientist: Men who spend big money wining and dining their dates are not frittering away hard-earned cash. According to a pair of UK researchers, they are merely employing the best strategy for getting the girl without being taken for granted.<>

So he and Seymour built a model based on a series of dating decisions. In the model males had to decide what kind of gift to offer females – valuable, extravagant or cheap – based on how attractive he finds her. The females had to either accept or decline the gift and then decide whether to mate with the gift-giver – a decision also weighted on the 'attractiveness' of their prospective partner.

When they measured the different outcomes of all the steps, they found the best solution for the males was to give extravagant, but intrinsically value-free gifts (...) the vast majority of the time, while giving gifts of material value very occasionally.

The model showed that if males gave valuable gifts too often, the females would start to exploit them: the males have no clue as to the females’ real intentions in the model. Put simply, the females just take the diamonds and run. But when the gifts are worthless, an uninterested female has little incentive to accept, gaining no return on what could be just turn into the simple waste of an evening. Only girls who are serious would bother to go the distance. |Full Story|