Do’s and Don’ts of Online Dating

So, spring is in the air and you want to change up your dating style. For some of you, that might mean hanging out in different spots , while others might be interested in tackling new tactics, like online dating. Gone are the days when people were embarrassed that they signed up for OK Cupid in hopes of finding true love (or, at least, a one-night stand). In fact, more than a third of new marriages begin from online dating. Sure, those findings just confirm that we’re pretty much consumed by technology, but it also suggests that the chances of finding a good match on the interwebz is not only plausible, but actually possible.

Navigating social media can be tough, especially when it comes to matters of the heart. As a woman who dated online for a couple of years on a variety of dating sites,

I can help you with figuring out what women want when it comes to perfecting your online dating profile. I can’t promise you’ll meet the One, or the One for the Night, but hopefully we can ensure you come off as clever, and not creepy.

DO Know What Type of Site Is For You

There are tons of dating sites out there—approximately 5,000 worldwide—so it can be a bit overwhelming with deciding which one is right for you. Living off social assistance and down for whatever? Head to Plenty of Fish. If you’re cool with God and Jewish, try JDate. Interested in key parties and sleeping with, well, whoever, then OKCupid might be the site for you. If you’re looking for wedded bliss, eHarmony apparently has a good track record.

DON’T Use a Photo of You and Your Buds as a Profile Pic

For some reason dudes like uploading pics of themselves with other dudes on their profiles. I don’t understand this because it only creates way more competition for you. Many times I’ve seen a group photo on a guy’s profile and thought, “Oh, he must be the cute guy in the middle,” only to be sorely disappointed when I learned it was his friend and then I was all like, “Is he single? Where’s his profile?”

The lesson? Make sure your (high quality) photos feature you and only you, and while you’re at it, ensure they reflect the real you and not the fake I-volunteer-with-blind-kittens-and-hike-in-my-spare-time you (unless, of course, that really is you).

DO Be Clever With Your Profile

Filling out profiles can be annoying, but what’s more annoying is when guys use clichéd quotes like, “I play hard, and I work hard.” What does that even mean anyway? Does anyone know? That kind of stuff makes you sound like a boring asshole. Instead, set yourself apart with the tidbits that make you quirky and unique. Did you backpack around Iceland? Have you tried an improv class? Did you once eat a forty-ounce steak in thirty-five minutes? Tell us about it. Humour is always the fastest way to make your profile stand out from the crowd, and remember that women respond emotionally more than anything, so involve us in all the different facets of your personality. Oh, and don’t mention how much you hate writing about yourself and how you’ve been single for years and that this is the last straw for you. Being mopey and defiant never gets the girl.

DON’T Pick a Stupid Screen Name

BigJohn9Inches might sound clever to you, but, I mean, seriously, who are you really  kidding? First impressions are extremely important, especially online, so you want to choose a name that is memorable, but not vulgar (or inaccurate). Choosing a name that indicates what you’re into—like, cooking or surfing—gives a woman the sense of who you are right off the bat.

DO Tell the Truth

Typically, women lie about their weight and men lie about their height. You wouldn’t want to be surprised by your date’s appearance, so don’t lead her on by telling her that you’re a Ben Affleck when you’re really Tom Cruise. If a woman doesn’t like you for you, then it’s her fault for weeding out the 5’7” guy who could have treated her like a queen. Truth-telling also extends to the other details in your profile. For example, don’t say you’re a big House of Cards fan if you can’t accurately discuss the mind-blowing first episode of Season 2. Peeps be serious about their TV. Above all, trust is the main component of any successful relationship, so if you’re already fibbing, then you’re only setting yourself up for disaster and more nights alone with Netflix and a tube sock.

Brianne Hogan is a freelance writer based in Toronto, something of a humorist, and considers herself more Bridget Jones than Samantha Jones. Though she won’t reveal which parts, she will admit to liking emotionally unavailable men and drinking lots of wine.  You can follow her on Twitter  @briannehogan.
Photo courtesy of plantronicsgermany.

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