It’s 2021 and an increasing number of millennials in India are uninhibited about expressing themselves and what they want, when it comes to their lives and love. Dating app OkCupid says its users have also been upfront about their views around the various nuances of freedom. On India’s 75th Independence Day, it sheds light on what Indian millennials feel about freedom, how they choose to express it, and its importance in their lives.
OkCupid asked its users what they find most liberating, and data collected based on users’ responses to in-app questions suggests that 39 per cent of users find financial freedom to be the most liberating, closely followed by ‘Travel’ (30 per cent), ‘Sexuality’ (22 per cent) and ‘Art’ (9 per cent). Clearly, millennials value the freedom and liberty to share their views with 73 per cent of users agreeing that they are independent individuals — who think, speak, and support themselves on their own. When posed with a choice between ‘Freedom’ and ‘Money’, 65 per cent of users opted for more freedom, while 35 per cent chose money, indicating that while most millennials value their own independence, some rank money over the former.
When it comes to matters of the heart and financial independence in a relationship, 68 per cent of users strongly believe in allowing their partners their freedom in a relationship and 73 per cent of users also want their own independent bank accounts to enjoy their financial freedom in the long-term relationship, as per responses to questions on the app. This is as opposed to 27 per cent of users who would not mind having a joint bank account with their partner.
To further understand how daters view freedom in different aspects of their lives, and how these beliefs can impact their search for love, the platform also posed the following questions for its millennial daters:
* Freedom of the press is: Important or Not Important: Millennials have always been viewed as the Leaders of Change in India — always at the forefront of social and political activism, actively advocating to bring about positive change in our nation. To support this, OkCupid found that 90 per cent of users on the app feel ‘Freedom of Press’ is important.
* Do you believe that there should be laws to explicitly protect freedom of religion? Being a generation that believes in ‘Live and Let Live’, Indian millennials have also been vocal about matters of religious freedom where 76 per cent of users said that there should be laws to explicitly protect the same.
* What’s more important — Freedom or Safety? In a close call for this question, 58 per cent of users opted for ‘Freedom’ while 42 per cent opted for ‘Safety’ indicating that the scale may tip either way, but a majority of millennials would still prefer to have their freedom over worrying about concerns for their safety.
* Should freedom of speech allow the expression of all viewpoints, even extreme and widely offensive ones? Being a generation that is known for speaking their mind unabashedly and unapologetically, 58 per cent of users answered ‘Yes’ to the question, with 42 per cent of users opting for ‘No’ as the answer.
* Does your culture, ethnicity, or race play a large role in your identity? Provided with an array of options to answer this question, 34 per cent of users believe that their identity is ‘completely independent of their heritage’, while 25 per cent of users feel that their culture, ethnicity or race ‘plays a crucial part in who they are’.
Sitara Menon, Sr. Marketing Manager, OkCupid said, “Millennial Indians see freedom whether national or personal as the right to express freely. This extends into the sphere of relationships with concepts around how to “behave” in a relationship and outdated ideas of control being challenged. Nuances like this inform compatibility and become that much more important in a quest for love.”