I raise this issue because the strongest results in the paper are the ones measuring photographic self-deception, where people have posted pictures of themselves in which they appear significantly more attractive than they do in everyday life.
The older a dater is the more likely it is that they have posted a profile picture in which they are younger.
If they had, they might have found not that less attractive people were more deceptive, but that older people were more deceptive.
If they deceive in their profiles it is probably not because they evaluate themselves as being less attractive, and feel the need to compensate for that fact, but because they accurately assess that they need to do that in order to attract the attention of men who prefer to spend their time chatting online with women who could be their daughters.
I can’t imagine a 75-year-old women looking back on her marriage and reflecting that she might have been happier had her husband just been one inch taller.
Or a 75 year-old man looking at the mother of his children and thinking that if she had only been curvy, instead of just plump, his life with her would have been so much better.
If this is the case, then the relationship between deception and attractiveness is not a result of people assessing themselves as being less attractive, it's just a function of time on the market.
Online dating technology appears to have changed the way we measure a potential mate’s worth.
They were given their online dating profile and asked to rate the level of deception of specific elements of the profile on a scale of one to five.
They were objectively measured for weight and height and asked to provide proof of their age.
Eighteen year-olds do not post five year old pictures while a fifty year old might.
I am not sure why the researchers didn’t control for age in their regressions.
Finally they were photographed in three poses, one of which replicated their main profile picture.