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November 4, 2010

Still ranking on Internet dating? Really?

Filed under: issues — posted by Breakup Girl @ 12:28 pm

Folks, this is getting as old as the people who allegedly lie about their age on the Internet. Are we really still slamming internet dating? It’s kind of like saying cell phones are bad, or “technology.” In the latest crabby smackdown, Rhodri Marsden, writing in The Independent, “reveals” the “truth” about Internet dating: things don’t work out more often than they do. Stop the presses? Because um, that is also true of bricks-and-mortar dating as well — it’s probability, not cynicism — not to mention, well, life. Saying that he has — aha! — found people who’ve been bruised by Internet dating! is like saying he’s found people who have been bruised by…dating. Duh. Everyone said it was handy. No one said it was magic.

To be sure, there are differences, concrete and ineffable, between dating online and IRL. Each has advantages and disadvantages. The fact that you can likely “meet” more people online than off does translate into more rejection: again, that’s math. And the Internet probably makes for more colorful before/after bait/switch experiences, but that’s because of the built-in online -> real-life progression; that’s story structure, folks. (Said it before: you mean all the people you meet on singles hikes tell the truth from day 1?) So to throw the Internet babes out with the bathwater is, to put a fine point on it, just dumb. So, too, is — if you’re single and would like to change that — not making Internet dating part of a diversified meeting-people portfolio.

So, enough. I’m outta here. Because BG spends some of her time online, and some of her time “getting out there.” See?

(h/t The Awl)


  1. I will admit I do have a thing against internet dating. But its not about the weirdos or the liars, its about the connection. There is something to be said about meeting a person and having that initial first contact that important to me and my dating experience. I’m a good judge in character but I wonder how well that would translate to the online world!

    Stella B.

    Comment by StellaBunz — November 4, 2010 @ 1:07 pm

  2. I’ve had a online dating profile for about 3 years now. (on and off) I’ve met some people that I knew right away I was not into. Then I met some that had some chemistry but died out. I’ve also met guys at a bar or through coworkers, friends, family etc and the same idea/feelings applied. I see online dating as a way to meet people just like mingling at a social, going to a babyshower or being introduced to someone’s son. You can not control the guy or his intentions but you can always control yours. I’ve learned from most experiences but I think that meeting someone online is a simple avenue. I do not believe that Mr. Right is going to knock on my door on a friday night while i am watching Netflix.

    Comment by Lunalove321 — November 4, 2010 @ 1:22 pm

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  4. I meet lots of guys on the internet. As far as not getting that spark – I don’t do it through dating sites. I do it on political message boards. It started quite accidently. I love politics and started spending a certain amount of time a day at political message boards, where invariably, you develop one or two favs and spend most of your time there. Guess what? Chemistry actually does develop online in those circumstances, and I’ve found it pretty much as exciting as IRL. IN some ways, more so because of the mystery. I’m a bit addicted to it to the tell the truth.

    Comment by Sharon — November 4, 2010 @ 5:06 pm

  5. Because um, that is also true of bricks-and-mortar dating as well — it’s probability, not cynicism — not to mention, well, life.

    To be fair, I did actually say that.


    Comment by Rhodri Marsden — November 4, 2010 @ 6:23 pm

  6. Hi Rhodri! I’m glad you found us. Fair enough: you did. My beef, really, and perhaps I should have made this clearer, is not with your article per se but on the topic — i.e., arguments against Internet dating in general, which to me just feel tired, unhelpful, and even (if inadverently) stigma-perpetuating. Had I dwelt longer on your article itself, I would also have noted that — though I stand by my broad defense of Internet dating — it’s smartly written, and certainly fair. (I also loved the England/London jokes in the comments, even though I didn’t get a single one.) In fact, I’m surprised that things haven’t worked out for you so far! Thanks for giving me the chance to offer an olive branch, and I wish you all the best.

    Comment by Breakup Girl — November 5, 2010 @ 9:07 am

  7. […] Breakup Girl » Still ranking on Internet dating? Really? […]

    Pingback by Internet Dating | Online Dating Tips — November 5, 2010 @ 7:25 pm

  8. Another thing, for people who are shy or can be hard to get to know at first, using the internet to meet and get to know people can be easier/better than the “old-fashioned” way.

    Comment by Stephanie — November 6, 2010 @ 9:35 pm

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