The REAL Stuff White People Like is actually about what different ethnic groups like.
We selected 526,000 OkCupid users at random and divided them into groups by their (self-stated) race. We then took all these people’s profile essays (280 million words in total!) and isolated the words and phrases that made each racial group’s essays statistically distinct from the others’.
Using this kind of analysis, we were able find the interests, hobbies, tastes, and self-descriptions that are specially important to each racial group, as determined by the words of the group itself. The information in this article is not our opinion. It’s data, aggregated from the essays of half a million real people.
I think it should be emphasized that OKCupid users are not necessarily representative of the people of the world in general as far as tastes and self-descriptions are concerned; they are only representative of single people who are looking for a date. But we’re just blogging here so I thought it might be fun to compare myself to them anyway.
Of the things White men like, I like Ghostbusters, Groundhog Day, Blazing Saddles, and CCR. I guess I can say I like The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy since I like the movie. I tried to read the book many years ago but I can’t even remember whether or not I finished it. I like one book by Robert Heinlein so I think it might be cheating to count Heinlein as one of the “things I like”. “The Offspring” – well, I like my offspring but I think they might mean something else. Guitar – of course I like to listen to guitar, though probably not the same genre as they’re talking about.
Of the stuff White women like, I like flea markets, decorating, getting dressed up, summertime, historical fiction, and cookbooks. I guess I can say I like Diet Coke, though it’s not my favorite. Also new recipes and baking. I think it’s strange that enough people listed “my toes” among the things they like for it to show up in the list. I suppose I like my toes well enough; they’re okay, but I certainly wouldn’t have listed them as one of the “things I like”.
Stuff Black men like that I also like: Calm (unless that’s a band or something; in that case I have no idea) NFL. Stuff black women like that I also like… well, I’m sorry to say “shopping” is the only thing I can legitimately put on my list. R&B is okay but I don’t know anything about it and I sort of like some soft rock but as you know it’s not really what I’m into.
Stuff Latinos like: Men – nothing really. I have read Of Mice and Men and thought it was good but I wouldn’t list it as one of favorites. And of course I like some comedy. Doesn’t everyone? Women – I like different cultures and I suppose I am family oriented. I’ve thought about reading One Hundred Years of Solitude but haven’t gotten around to it yet.
Stuff Asians like: Men – I like noodles but since it’s singular I think they might not be talking about the food. The Rock? Do they mean Dwayne Johnson? I usually enjoy his movies. Trying out new things and surfing the net – definitely. Gadgets. And there’s “different cultures” again. Women: There’s “surfing the net” and “different cultures” again. Also, The Food Network, food, recipes and cookbooks, cooking and baking.
Indians (Asian): Men – nothing except a couple of things already mentioned. Women – this group gets my attention because there are several items in the list that I think I might like but haven’t tried yet. But, limiting this to those things I actually know I like (and haven’t mentioned already) I like spices, discovering new things, dark chocolate, and great conversation.
Middle Easterners: Men – nothing there that I haven’t already mentioned. Women – cat power? Well, I like cats. Does that count? Bagels, chocolate, aesthetics, nature, darjeeling. And again there are several things on the list that I think I might like if I tried it.
And finally, Pacific Islanders: Men – Science and the Internet is about all we have in common. Women – sweetness, celebrating and The Food Network, which I’ve already mentioned. I’m tempted be sarcastic about “drinks”. I like, tea, Diet Cherry Pepsi, a few other soda and cranberry juice. Those are drinks so yeah, I like drinks.
I started this hoping that I would not fit the profile. I’m happy to find that I don’t exactly.
A couple of things I notice that nearly everyone likes. One is Alicia Keys. (thus my smart-alec title) Whoever she is, she certainly is popular. Serendipity – Well, serendipity is nice but is that what they really mean or is it the name of a band or something? I wish it wasn’t all in lower case.
Another interesting thing, in addition to the “racial profiling”, they profiled religiosity and writing proficiency level and found that the less serious people are about religion the better they write. Since writing and reading skills usually go hand in hand maybe that tells us something. But I’m sure this will get under someone’s skin so draw your own conclusions.