The pros and cons of online dating

26 Feb

Tossing your hat into the online dating ring is riddled with pros and cons. At some point or another most single people have given it a whirl, heck even some married people which is a whole other issue altogether. It is pretty safe to say we have all at some time or another at least browsed through a dating site, of course not for ourselves, but for a friend we really want to see find that special someone. Online dating sites aren’t all good nor are they all bad, they just present a different set of the good and bad than is faced when first meeting in person. Of course some of these things are a double edged sword swinging both ways, but what in this world is perfect?

 Online dating is potentially good as it increases your exposure opening you up to people that may be perfect for you that you otherwise would never meet. It allows you to look for people fitting the criteria that you want, not that you hope to randomly find when meeting people live. With exposure you have help finding that special someone, but you can also find a lot of losers on the way to that winner. You will find plenty of pretenders and you will get aggravated to the utmost if you let it get to you. What else is good and bad about online dating? Plenty on each side, just more of it is negative from my experience and research.

Many people enjoy a certain level of annonymity. You don’t have to put your real name or a picture on a site,few people do in fact. You can write a wonderful description and hope that the type of person you are attracted to is the kind of person that really pays attention to the words in the profile and will be so moved they contact you based on that. The reality however is most people want to see what someone looks like and without a photo your level of responses will be significantly lower than with.

A further problem lies in those who do use a picture. How do you know it’s really them? Who says that picture isn’t several years old? Did they photoshop it? It’s hard to not be cynical, but we all know many people do these things on an all too regular basis. Some sites claim they fight this, but do they really? Nah, hardly at all, it takes something bordering on a presidential mandate to get a stolen/inaccurate photo removed. My sister pointed out to me that even on a site like the one always advertising on television (I can’t really give their name here but it’s the one that doesn’t allow gays) that boasts the strictest of standards that she had flagged six profiles

in which people used a photo of Nicky Hilton for their profile. C’mon folks Nicky Hilton is not on this site, certainly not six times times, especially claiming to live Easton Pennsylvania. Those profiles remained so long as dues were being paid I would assume as they lasted a few months even after she sent them to admin. A side note is this site that doesn’t allow gays and lesbians does a poor job of screening, my sister got on and well…she’s gay! Says it right in her profile, three times! So much for their testing huh? It made us believe they only test your credit worthiness.

 Pay sites are in general better, if you’re spending money to join it’s more likely you’re serious but not always. How many twenty year olds do you know that have finished college with a masters degree no less and are earning upwards of $100,000.00 a year? Personally I know one that was an absolute genius coming out of MIT. Just one. Check a dating site and you’ll find thousands! Common sense here folks. That is just an indication you can’t really trust profiles all that much, people are going to always try to make them self look better somehow, it’s just human nature.

The good news is not everyone is dishonest and goes overboard embellishing their exploits. You may have to dig a little bit but they are there. The other side of the coin is often times the perfect person lives nowhere near you, and by that I mean hundreds of miles away or more. Even though you find someone online, meeting live isn’t always easy or practical which is a huge downside. There is no garuntee you’ll find anyone and even sites “garunteeing” matches are pretty hollow. You didn’t find anyone in six months so they give you six more free months to not find anyone? And that assumes you are willing to jump through hoops, roll over and beg, and perform and number of tricks to prove you didn’t find anyone.

Another pro is you have plenty of different styles of dating sites to choose from, regualar, gay, religious, adult, regional, et al. You can create a quick profile and decide whether or not you like the site before going all in and investing the effort to make a full profile. The bad news is not all sites allow contact with other members without agreeing to a recurring charge for three months oft times so they aren’t really free. They are free to post a profile, just not to use. Some won’t let you delete a profile once it’s made, they just call it “inactive.” Then you have the headache of spam galore at whatever e-mail address you provided. Yes, many do sell or share your information. This is an extra special little bit of torture.

The pro’s and con’s of online dating sites are voluminous enough to fill a series of books. The basic thing is you can get exposure and meet people you otherwise never would have. The con is you really can’t trust the majority of the people you find on dating sites, even those that claim they are above deception. Still with all the cons about online dating it is worth a shot if you use common sense. Just remember that someone is successfully meeting people this way and there’s no reason it can’t be you.

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