In popular and political culture, Washington is no stranger to scandal and intrigue involving successful people and their extramarital pursuits. Think about it: Clinton/Lewinsky. Condit/Levy. Weiner/The Internet.
Then there’s the rest of us — still successful, and still ready to cheat, according to adultery Web site Ashleymadison.com, which says the District is home to nearly 38,000 registered users. The site also named Washington the place with the highest per capita membership in its 13-million-strong user base.
“Simply put, the more successful you are, the more prone to cheating you are, and Washington is full of successful people looking for something outside their marriage,” said Noel Biderman, CEO of Avid Life Media, which owns Ashley Madison, in a statement.
If you want to know more about cheating in Washington — how many people are doing it and why it’s done — we put in a list of questions to Biderman. His answers are after the jump:
Q: What was the methodology behind the rankings? What did you take into account when ranking cheating-friendly cities?
The cities were ranked on a total members-per-capita basis. We obtained the metro area population from WolframAlpha. The exception is Washington, D.C., where the calculations were based on the city population. We have 37,943 members in Washington, D.C.
Does being “successful” correlate with cheating in your experience? Why?
Yes, for two distinct reasons. First, most people who achieve a level of success do so from taking professional risks, that for the most part pay off, and this underlying personality trait may then lead these individuals to take personal risks as well.
Second, cheating is directly correlated to opportunity. The more successful you are the more you tend to travel for work and pleasure, and more often removed from your family, interacting with individuals with whom commonalities surface.
Q. What’s the subscription rate for Ashley Madison in D.C.?
A. For Washington, DC, Ashleymadison.com receives approximately 30 new sign-ups per day with peaks on Mondays.