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Show ALL Forums  > Dating and Love Advice  > The problem with online dating....      Home login  
 AUTHOR
 Jarbarian
Joined: 2/9/2006
Msg: 1
The problem with online dating....Page 1 of 3    (1, 2, 3)
I'm seeing it more often and thought I would bring up this topic.

It seems as if many of us are banking our relationship happiness on online profiles. I mean, we don't even go out anymore, meet with friends, attend social gatherings where we know we could meet new people, we don't take up new hobbies, we ignore a smile and eye contact at the gym or grocery store.

WHAT GIVES?

I'm sorry but if you're banking your future happiness on a dating site I have bad news. Recently a survey (don't remember if it was AskMen.com or what) listed the places people met their future husband/wife.

60% met through friends.
2% met online.

That's a huge disparity. Add in on top that online profiles are made to screen people out. Much like a job description, someone's list of "requirements" amount to basically a WISH LIST. You're not going to find Ms Perfect online (well, at least the statistics say so). You're more likely to find your soul mate (or whatever you want to call them) through family or friends...at social gatherings (read: NOT night clubs where alcohol is taken in abundance).

On top of that, you're better apt to sell yourself and your charming personality in person. Most all of our attrative qualities can't be found in a photo or a brief essay about who we are.

Am I whining about something? No (so don't go there). All I want people to understand is that you shouldn't bank your happiness on your online profile but instead make an effort to smile and talk to someone in town.

As a caveat, I have a friend who I was hanging out with a couple winters ago. He was cold and said "Hey dude, let's stop in the mall so I can get a jacket." So we bump around the mall until we end up in a store looking at the jackets. Well, this girl comes over to help him with the jackets. They make eye contact, chat a bit, exhange phone numbers, etc.

They just got engaged a few weeks ago. And all because he was cold and needed a jacket.....imagine if he banked his happiness online.

Cheers.
 69cobra
Joined: 7/28/2006
Msg: 2
view profile
History
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 1:47:52 PM
As I've stated in the past... On-line dating is backwards. Normally, you meet someone and if there is that 'chemistry', you learn more about them....On-line you learn everything about them and then you meet them and what if that same 'warm fuzzy' feeling isn't there??

Also, we often set ourselves up for failure....When we read a profile, we project onto the person/image, all of the things that we 'wish them to be' instead of what is actually there. We can't help but be disappointed when the person doesn't live up to our expectations.

 WomanInProgress
Joined: 10/16/2005
Msg: 3
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 1:48:44 PM
Dude...you know I am not going to disagree with you. You have to be living your life to meet someone, and online dating (or whatever it is people do here) should be a piece of a huge pie of a social life. I have been online since the early days of AOL, and it's true - in the end most people you meet online don't amount to much. But it doesn't hurt to up your numbers...like the lottery says "you can't win if you don't play".

BUT people have to look at the odds to really grasp the results. Seems like out of about 80% of all people we meet (or 40% if you approach no one) will be a one sided interest. The rest will be either mutually uninterested or mutual chemistry.

I meet people in clubs, restaurants, bookstores, the gym, in everyday life (shopping, pumping gas, walking in and out of places, driving somewhere, getting my oil changed) and in my social circles - I meet more people thru friends of friends than anything else. And hey I'm not even trying. Imagine if I was? Sheesh. Granted, I've been working in two high profile social industries for years so I tend to have a huge amount of aquaintances, but still. Course when I see someone I like, I talk to them too, so that can't hurt.

Hopefully people are signing off and living lives and coming here to post/meet people in their spare time, this is totally no way to spend most of your day, unless you are like me and it's a slow day at the office.

 Jarbarian
Joined: 2/9/2006
Msg: 4
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 1:59:32 PM

unless you are like me and it's a slow day at the office


Gotta love the internet huh? What did we do with our free time over the Holidays before the net?!
 powervideo
Joined: 10/21/2004
Msg: 5
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 2:08:29 PM

You're not going to find Ms Perfect online...


I'm sure the owners of this site and their sponsors appreciate mightily your cautionary warning/entreaty to all of us.

 Jarbarian
Joined: 2/9/2006
Msg: 6
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 2:16:02 PM

I'm sure the owners of this site and their sponsors appreciate mightily your cautionary warning/entreaty to all of us.


It's my opinion, am I not entitled to it?
 just_Kats
Joined: 12/15/2005
Msg: 7
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 2:30:59 PM
I agree there's no sense in spending days or weeks on here, putting all your effort and affection into something that might, in reality, end up with only one date...

.. and I agree that communication through the internet seems so much easier than in real life, that people seem to overrate it..

... and in this case I believe the statistics.. ;)

still, it's human nature to try a hundred times before we realize the simple magic of this all - we're only getting drawn into the phantasy world...

cause, don't we really know it?
 Hobbes348
Joined: 9/11/2006
Msg: 8
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 2:33:57 PM
For whatever it's worth, I believe Jarbarian is right.. somewhat...

If your waiting for a match on this site.... you'll grow old -- alone. Get out.... is more than sitting in front of a monitor. I think POF is for forums. Humor..... In my case, I met and dated far more ladies on eHarmony and Match.com (two dates a week for 4 months). I know this view is unpopular, but that's the way I see it. Admittedly I am new to this dating. after forty years........ but I never had a date from eHarmony or Match.com that I wouldn't have take home to meet Mom. After months trying on online, called a gal from high school.... Merry Christmas all.............
 powervideo
Joined: 10/21/2004
Msg: 9
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 2:41:07 PM

It's my opinion, am I not entitled to it?


Most certainly! In addition you have the right to express your opinions on/at any public forum that you choose.

...

Except that... well, you know what I'm going to say next, dontcha?!? Heh.

Nevermind, I won't bore you.




It's just that these silly cliches started running through my head when I read your post: "Biting the hand that feeds you", "cast not stones in a glass house given to you for free" (alright, I made that one up).
 Jarbarian
Joined: 2/9/2006
Msg: 10
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 2:44:53 PM

It's just that these silly cliches started running through my head when I read your post: "Biting the hand that feeds you", "cast not stones in a glass house given to you for free" (alright, I made that one up).


Ahhh but PoF is more than online dating. Frankly I use it more for the forums than anything else. Most of my dates over the past 8 months have been from people I met in person than online. Online dating is such a farce in my mind. Not that I am soured on it because good people can be found online, I just think the presentation always falls short of reality.

Almost like a bait and switch.
 powervideo
Joined: 10/21/2004
Msg: 11
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 3:05:52 PM
Well, not to belabor what I thought was an obvious point, but... who do you think pays for those private forums that you (and I) enjoy so much? Bandwidth, site hosting, etc?
A- The owners of this site, who in turn depend on money received via click-throughs for the various ads you see posted all over this entire site.

I can almost guarantee you that the majority of click-through traffic is produced from visitors to the dating site portion of PoF. Therein lies the income for PoF owners. Less people visiting (clicking through) = less money to run the site with. Reaching a point of diminishing returns, well, this lovely, free (to us) site goes away... including our beloved forums.

Elementary, my dear Jarbarian!
 SmartAirhead
Joined: 11/8/2006
Msg: 13
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 3:27:42 PM
I agree with much of what you say - doing this kind of dating makes us lazy and is a bit of a narcotic...BUT, I personally know of 2 couples that met online and got married. If it can happen to others, why not me? Whose blood pressure doesn't rise a bit when seeing a message in our inbox? I'm still with you though. I could post a better photo and perhaps market myself better, but I'm ok with just posting something on the forums - they really crack me up at times and are also thought provoking...
 Jarbarian
Joined: 2/9/2006
Msg: 14
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 3:28:16 PM

Well, not to belabor what I thought was an obvious point, but... who do you think pays for those private forums that you (and I) enjoy so much? Bandwidth, site hosting, etc?
A- The owners of this site, who in turn depend on money received via click-throughs for the various ads you see posted all over this entire site.


Yep, and if we don't come to the forums then advertisers like the ever-so-eloquent "SugarDaddyForME.com" won't be paying the bills :)


I can almost guarantee you that the majority of click-through traffic is produced from visitors to the dating site portion of PoF. Therein lies the income for PoF owners. Less people visiting (clicking through) = less money to run the site with. Reaching a point of diminishing returns, well, this lovely, free (to us) site goes away... including our beloved forums.

Elementary, my dear Jarbarian!


I think you missed the jist of my thread which is for people to not RELY on online dating. To hone their social skills and get out and try and meet people in person as well.

As other posters have brought up, use online dating as a secondary or third option but don't pin your hopes on it.

Cheers!
 Jarbarian
Joined: 2/9/2006
Msg: 15
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 3:33:28 PM
Greenfeather, you know you bring up a good point. Do you know where I have met other people?

The gym.
The grocery store.
The DMV (yes! really!)
The Gas station.
Hanging out with friends doing something socially (hiking, camping, snowboarding, etc)
The racetrack.
After a long motorcycle ride at a local hang out.
On the golf course (yep!)

Any interaction with someone else is an opportunity to hone your social skills and to keep your radar out there. The BEST opportunity to present yourself to the opposite sex is in person.

Can online dating work? Sure. As some of the surveys have pointed out, the success rate is pretty low (due to mostly unrealistic requirements) and your chances of meeting a significant other is better when you can let your personality shine in PERSON :)

Like I said, I practice talking to women all the time. Not because I am interested in them romantically but just to hone my social skills and learn how women think and what they react to. It's definitely practice you just can't get any other way.

Cheers.
 ~squirrly~
Joined: 7/4/2006
Msg: 16
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 3:46:38 PM
My thoughts are if you are single that you are open to all avenues of meeting people and online dating is just one of them. I have heard different statistics and it seems to vary with what you read. One study by Mcmaster University which was called "Digital Dating in Canada" done in 2001 said the following :





MAIN FINDINGS

Four main social forces appear to be driving the rapid growth of online dating:

- A growing proportion of the population is composed of singles, the main pool for online dating.
- Career and time pressures are increasing, so people are looking for more efficient ways of meeting others for intimate relationships.
- Single people are more mobile due to the demands of the job market, so it is more difficult for them to meet people for dating.
- Workplace romance is on the decline due to growing sensitivity about sexual harassment.

1.1 to 1.2 million Canadians have visited an online dating site.
- The potential for online dating services in Canada is an additional 2.5 to 2.8 million adults.
- While more than 80% of Canadian users of online dating services are single, nearly 18% are married or living common-law.
- In Canada, Internet users are younger, better educated, more likely to be employed in the paid labour force, and more likely to earn higher income than Canadians in general.
- Compared to Internet users in general, online daters are more likely to be male, single, divorced, employed in the paid labour force, and urban.
- Online daters are sociable offline. 24% belong to a religious organization, 41% belong to clubs, 82% visit family or relatives at least once a month, and 53% go out with others for social or leisure activities more than once a week.
- Most people use online dating services mainly to find dates and establish a long-term relationship, not to flirt online, find a marriage partner or find a sexual partner.

People use online dating services mainly because:

- It creates the opportunity to meet people one would otherwise never meet.
- It offers privacy and confidentiality.
- It is more convenient than other ways of trying to meet people.

The main perceived disadvantage of online dating is that people sometimes do not tell the truth about themselves.
-A third of people using online dating services have not met anyone face-to-face as a result of their online activities. Nearly half have met 1 to 5 others and the remaining fifth have met more than five other people.
-A quarter of online daters have misrepresented themselves online. There were almost no differences between men and women in their propensity to misrepresent themselves.


Among online daters who had met other online daters face-to-face:
- 63% had sex with at least one person they met online;
- 60% formed at least one long-term friendship;
- 27% met at least one person they regarded as a “partner;” and
- 3% met someone they eventually married


Online dating seems to be safer than conventional dating.
Thus, although 10% of people who went out on a date with someone they met online reported being frightened at least once, this was not sufficiently serious to change their favourable attitude toward online dating. Moreover, the experience of conventional daters is
almost certainly worse than that of online daters.

Embarrassment is not a major factor inhibiting Canadians from using online dating services. The main inhibiting factors are control-related (some people believe it is too risky) and pragmatic (some people do not believe it is effective, others think there are better ways to meet people for dating, and still others have simply not yet found a suitable date). However, if a friend has used an online dating service, and especially if the friend’s experience was positive, these inhibitions are considerably reduced.



so 60% found a long term relationship back in 2001...sounds pretty good to me.
 carbizmgr
Joined: 11/25/2006
Msg: 17
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 4:07:26 PM
Sounds good to me too Squirrly nut buddy.... there is always datemypet.com, if the internet thing isn't weird enough!...Jar, what about the success stories, when people move along and actually meet thru this and other date sites?...i have met and made some great friends here, and taken the plunge, went on dates, and actually have met someone special lately, I was just plain tired of the date set ups at my family's dinner table, this lady is cute, intelligent, and has a similar mind set, something not usually found when you get "set-up" through friends or family...or at least I didn't. The Internet is a great tool to widen your horizons, and open doors often left closed thru any other way.
I vote for the internet approach.
 Wabbitswayer
Joined: 10/4/2005
Msg: 18
view profile
History
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 4:20:08 PM
all these places are nice to meet people if you are the type people want to talk to, try it with a lazy eye. First impression , you must be retarded or something. Try it at places where you shop where the people know you, do you really want to set yourself up for eternal awkwardness after you get shot down. Try it at work, yeah right. I do stay awake during those harrasment inservices.
 bassace
Joined: 11/1/2006
Msg: 19
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 4:20:51 PM
I'm with you about people don't even seem to want to have eye contact anymore,I can be anywhere,walgreens,wal-mart,etc.and try to make eye contact to a female,and get blown off like I'm not a human.people are so uptight and scary these days.If half would at least drop their guards and take notice to some of us guys,you never know,you could actually be smiling back at your future husband.It seems like all year round people are like scrooge&wonder why they're alone looking for Mr. right.but not giving any of us a chance.Think about how many of us actually looked at one another somewhere,we could actually be looking at a POF member and not know it.Every female ad on here someone says they like to cuddle,and watch movies and what not,how would we even know,when noone ever takes the chance to even meet for GODS sake.this online thing needs to come to an end one of these days.Half the people on here should have found THE person for them by now.This should tell most of us something,is it really worth it,or are people on here cuz they don't have nothing else to do.A POF get together should of went down by now.We don't have to rent a place,just say when and everybody meet up soemwhere one weekend.Stardust,state lanes,lefevres,bubbas brockway rollerskating,SOMETHING,it's not hard to do if people on here really are looking to meet and greet so they can settle down.
 InvisibleInk
Joined: 12/16/2006
Msg: 20
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 4:31:54 PM
Dude, you know it's fine and all if you've met people standing in line at the grocery store or the DMV. That's great. I feel proud for you.

I'm a writer -- currently a self-employed one -- which means that I spend long hours on my own. I'm in my early 30s, and just don't do the whole club scene. I have a fairly small social circle, and most of the people in that circle are now married. I'm a bookish kind of guy. I am Not Your Average Bear. In fact, I'm not really sure I want to "settle down" and have kids for the sake of having them. I have trouble working in conservative offices, and seem to only like to working in them for short bursts at a time. I just don't play "The Game," aside from trying to do whatever I've been tasked with as well as I can.

And I really don't care what anyone thinks of me for writing any of that.

I may not know precisely how I'm going to get what I want -- ie. a book of short stories published, eventually a novel -- but I sure as hell know what I *don't* want.

And I know that I ain't going to find what I want in line at some supermarket.

I ain't banking on finding anyone on here. But I also don't sit on a forum and tell people what losers they are to boost my own fragile ego for participating in an online dating site. I was with someone for five years thanks to a similar dating service. It worked for me. Maybe not how I wanted it to in the long run, but it worked. Maybe it will again.
 Jarbarian
Joined: 2/9/2006
Msg: 21
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 4:32:51 PM

- 3% met someone they eventually married


Not good odds huh? So far 2% and 3%.

Bassace, you just have to keep smiling and making eye contact. Don't be afraid to approach and say hello. Just pay attention to wedding rings. And hey, don't be afraid to spark up a conversation with a much older woman. You'd be surprised what you learn from them just by chatting with them. I love Senior Citizens as I see them as a bundle of wisdom.

As for MEETING and dating women you talk to out in the real world, you stand a much better chance of being confident in yourself and not letting rejection bother you. Life is full of rejection!

Here's an old saying that has always helped me maintain a positive attitude:

"Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I deal with it..."

Cheers!
 ~squirrly~
Joined: 7/4/2006
Msg: 22
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 4:51:41 PM
yes but jarbarian did you miss this?

"27% met at least one person they regarded as a “partner;” "

so you can say that at least 30% found a significant other.

It also people felt safer meeting online where they found out a bit about someone before dating them.

Society today is different from the old days and now there are harassment suits and people are nervous of strangers. I think you are right that people need to keep their options open and not only focussed on online dating though.
 red_riot21
Joined: 11/4/2006
Msg: 23
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 5:12:58 PM
While I remain cautiously optimistic about the online thing (call it hedging my bets) I still have to agree with the OP.

While online dating helps you meet people you might not have the chance to otherwise, in my experience (having met a ton of ppl online) a lot of the time there's a *reason* I haven't met them. They either live halfway across town, travel in completely different circles, or just generally have nothing in common with me. None of which are the makings of a lasting relationship, even if they might be great people.

A suggestion to the people who find they have a very small social circle. I recently threw a party where each of the invited guests was instructed to bring a guest - whom none of our immediate friends new. It worked great! It was a great way to expand our circle because everyone who came knew at least one person, we already knew they'd be awesome people because one of our close friends thought so, and everyone found that they had lots in common and new friendships were formed. A few gatherings like that and you'll suddenly find yourself surrounded by a wack of great people through whom you just meet mr. right. :D

To the guy who says he won't find who he's looking for in the grocery store - we've all gotta eat, hon. She's there.
 WomanInProgress
Joined: 10/16/2005
Msg: 24
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 5:23:55 PM
so 60% found a long term relationship back in 2001...sounds pretty good to me.

According to what you quoted, 60% found at least one long term friendship, not relationship back in 2001. Big difference.

?...i have met and made some great friends here, and taken the plunge, went on dates, and actually have met someone special lately, I was just plain tired of the date set ups at my family's dinner table, this lady is cute, intelligent, and has a similar mind set, something not usually found when you get "set-up" through friends or family...or at least I didn't. The Internet is a great tool to widen your horizons, and open doors often left closed thru any other way. I vote for the internet approach.

I agree that if you are online meeting a lot of people and have no expectations, it can be a great way to up your numbers, simply because you're being more social. I think it's a great place to initially meet and get to know someone, not date. You should make tons of new friends in all kinds of places and then date from that pool; if you don't it's cool that you added to your social circle.
 ~squirrly~
Joined: 7/4/2006
Msg: 25
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 5:55:08 PM
well technically speaking a friendship is a relationship but I get your point. The fact is still that 30% found someone they called a partner or married.

And you really hit on something with "have no expectations". Start out looking for "like-minded" people who you become friends with and maybe....just maybe, you can find that elusive kindred spirit who may turn out to be something more than a friend.
 Wabbitswayer
Joined: 10/4/2005
Msg: 26
view profile
History
The problem with online dating....
Posted: 12/21/2006 5:56:31 PM
and another thing, on not looking at night clubs to the OP. If I don't look good to somebody when they are in the mood to dance why would I look any better to them when they are sober?
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