Learn about the problems with online dating in this series of dating advice videos.
Host: What are some pros and cons to online dating? Gloria MacDonald: You need to understand that for all the pros of online dating and that there are lots and lots of people out there, there are also some pretty serious cons and pretty serious downsides and that, it is incredibly time consuming. You will probably have to face an often a lot of rejection but if you can somehow or other get yourself to understand it’s not personable. It’s not personal, excuse me. For the most part, the person who is rejecting you hasn’t even met you. So, they really can't form a truly appropriate assessment of you. So, don’t take it personally. Say, “Okay, fine. Next, I am going to meet somebody else.” One of the challenges with online dating is it’s a highly, highly visual medium. So you have got to post a picture up there. People who don’t post pictures on the site have more than five times fewer hits than people that post pictures. In fact I think the numbers are more like ten times fewer hits than people who post pictures. So, have a good picture of yourself up there, perhaps have a variety of pictures of yourself up there. Another challenge with online dating is that people misrepresent themselves all the time. Unfortunately, we are in this age of youth and beauty, so people, they are always fudging on their age, they might be 41, so they say they are 37 or 38. Those 10 year numbers the 30, 40, 50, 60; people don’t want to hit those numbers. So they tend to fudge and take, shave several years of their age. Women unfortunately, shave several pounds of their weight and men tend to exaggerate on how tall they might be and maybe what their income range is. So just be aware of that. It’s an unfortunate fact of the medium, so you have to be aware of that and understand that lots and lots of people are doing it. I personally don’t recommend misrepresenting yourself. In the long run the truth is going to come out; it’s not going to do you any good. We have all heard horror stories about someone who has met someone, who had a picture of somebody who wasn’t even them up on the site. So, be aware of that. With online dating, always, always, always, always meet in a public place. Don’t ever give someone your home address or your home phone number. Ideally, give them a cell phone number that can't be tracked to an address and this is just for your own personal safety to be smart, to be wise about it. I highly recommend that you don’t spend hours and hours e-mailing people back and forth and finding out lots about them through e-mail but really send a couple of emails back and forth and set up a time to get together. Get together for a coffee, a drink, something casual; don’t make that first meeting a full dinner where you might be stuck with a total stranger sitting in a formal restaurant for an hour and a half to two hours. Make it something casual so that it is easy to get out of it. You can spend 45 minutes having a coffee and then say, “Gee, it was really pleasant meeting you. I have to get going.” But it gives yourself; it gives you an easy out.