With the Web tipped to soon eclipse friends as the primary way of finding mates, researchers are relishing online dating as a potent peephole into dating behaviour. Courtney Humphries reports that research presented last week at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association found that 22 percent of heterosexual couples surveyed met online. "As dating interactions have moved from the privacy of bars and social gatherings to the digital world of websites and e-mails, they are generating an unprecedented trove of data about how the initial phases of romance unfold."