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Dating Services: the Good, the Bad and the Ugly
Online dating is becoming incredibly popular now. An estimated 1 in 5 Americans are signed up to an online dating service meaning that, theoretically, if you're after a new date or just making new friends, you can have the pick of the bunch! In practice, despite what many dating related sites would have you believe, it's not always that simple.
A bit of background: the online dating industry is worth over $398 million in 2004 and this is expected to almost double within four years to about $642 million. This literally equates to tens of millions of people now using online dating services. This automatically means that we're dealing with the good, the bad and the ugly.
So, It's not all plain sailing but we hope that by reading through this short article you can insure your experience will be one of the best possible. And believe me, it is possible to have an absolutely stellar experience with online dating. So, don't let the following put you off.
Perhaps surprisingly, there are more me using online dating services than women. This creates a slight imbalance, which can be a problem. Of course, if you're a straight woman then this is great. If you're male than it's a good idea to choose one of the larger dating services that are likely to have a greater proportion of ladies, to save disappointment.
To put it bluntly, the next problem with online dating is the number of seemingly unattractive members they harbor. Don't let these first impressions put you off though. Most dating services do have a good number of incredibly attractive members that, perhaps, have hectic life styles and so can't afford the time to date in a conventional way. Get using the search features to find them, because they ARE there… somewhere!
Dating profiles, where "slim" means "average build" and "average build" often means "overweight." Of course this is NOT always the case, but when reading through dating profiles, always - always - read between the lines. People lying in their dating profiles is the most annoying and sometimes dangerous aspect of the online dating scene.
While women tend to be economical with the truth about their looks, men are more likely to lie about their availability. Dating services are commonly used to move on from one "almost ex" partner to a new partner. Sometimes a member may even be married and yet still falsely indicate in their profile that they're single. This is something that many dating services are cracking down on. Some dating services even ban married people from using their services and will even prosecute members that profess to be single when in fact they're married.
Tim Sullivan, the chief executive of Match said "We employ a lot of people that spend a lot of time reviewing the content posted on the site. We're a brand that tends to attract people seeking a serious relationship." Match rejects 3000 member's profiles after submitting each month and a further 2000 are removed as a result of complaints from current members.
People posting photos of other people is also a problem. To combat this problem Match, for example, now offers a "certified photo" process where users can get their photos professionally taken and certified with a stamp to indicate an authentic photo.
All in all, it's reassuring to see the dating services are taking the problems seriously and putting features in place to enialate them for good. However, these problems only go to show how mainstream online dating has become and, as in real life, with visulance and care, it's easy for everyone to enjoy online dating.
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