This post seems appropriate to me given that today is Valentine’s Day, but it was brought on after a friend posted an article from CNN titled “The lost art of offline dating“. It got me thinking about dating in general – both on and off line – and the effect that the internet, texting, and social media have had on modern dating.
According to match.com, 1 in 5 relationships start online. I’m going out on a limb here (I know), when I say that can’t all be false advertising – or someone would have sued them by now the way they are ready to sue Subway for selling a foot-long sub that well… falls a little short. Surely, there must be some redeeming qualities to online dating…. right?
Well not according to the CNN article. Online dating has boosted the confidence levels of all those wanna-be lovers and has broken down the traditional barriers to dating. In the process, online dating and social media have diluted the basics like body language, simple conversation, tone, and social cues. Email, Facebook, texting, and Twitter are impersonal and don’t allow for actual interaction. Online dating, according to the authors, should be avoidable.
So dating coach and author Adam LoDolce has a simple solution: meet people organically. No offense to Mr LoDolce, but he’s a dating coach – he clearly knows how difficult meeting people organically can be, and how much the ability to meet people organically dramatically depends on where in the country you live. Telling the average Bostonian to “meet someone organically” is either a joke or a slap in the face, given our populace’s propensity to be… distant (yes, I’m being kind).
And my favorite recommendation from this article?
Ever stand in line at Starbucks and hear someone mention a common interest? Strike up a conversation, instead of sticking your nose in your phone. Take opportunities to practice being social everywhere.
That’s likely to get you shunned around this city, or potentially killed in others.
I still contend that online dating can’t be all bad. Online dating allows you to streamline the process and weed out people you know you wouldn’t be interested in. I know, I know – what if you there are people out there that you don’t know if you would be interested in because you just wrote them off based on their online profile? Trust me… there are some people that YOU JUST KNOW. And yes, texting and Facebook messages may be impersonal – but at least it’s a form of communication? With so many couples unable to communicate, perhaps a little hiding behind a screen isn’t always bad thing?
There’s no doubt that at some point your online relationship has to move offline into the realm of modern dating. So if you’re really worried about rejection or that the other person might be crazy, do something simple like grab some ice cream; if it goes well, you now know what kind of ice cream they like, and if it goes poorly or they have horrible taste in ice cream, then at least you got to eat ice cream.