Fail to Fab: Everyone Online is Fake

By: Jess Downey, Copy Cutie

As I was listening to Laurie speak at Single in Stilettos, questions revealing the negative perceptions women have of online dating was an ongoing topic. As someone who’s been searching for love on the interwebs for more than a decade, I can definitely relate to the bad, but also, see the good. Here's a special series of Fail to Fabs that are all about tackling the bad apples of dating digitally.

Fail: A few weeks ago I was talking to a guy I know about the ups and downs of online dating when he told me I’m the only gal he’s met in real life who was truly genuine online. Though he’s only met a handful of ladies offline, he said all of them seemed to be one person on the site and someone entirely different in real life. Ultimately, this has led him to fear that everyone dating online is a fake.

Technically, my friend hasn’t failed ... yet. But if he continues thinking this way, it won't be long before he does.

Fab: In a world where people can say whatever they want to with just a few keystrokes, it’s normal to be hesitant. But just because people can do it doesn’t mean that everyone is doing it. The Internet is full of strangers but that doesn’t always equal fakes and phonies.

When you’re first chatting with a new match, minimize the online interaction as much as you can. Your goal is to get to know a little about the person without getting too attached. It’s easy to feel there’s a spark once common interests are established, but keep in mind that this person is still a stranger until you meet face-to-face. Aim for excitement while still maintaining realism (and your sanity).

It’s common to want to impress your date — people do it both online and off. With that said, avoid asking questions that might lead someone to tell you what they think you want to hear. Instead, encourage conversations that will allow someone to talk about themselves freely. That way you can pick up on subtle clues to figure out a match’s personality.

If you seem to encounter many phonies, switch things up. While you shouldn’t blame the dating site you’re on or yourself, a slight change in your strategy can open up a new world of possibilities. Try a different site, edit your profile, or mix up your search criteria.

Remember: One person does not everyone make so don’t let one bad apple online leave a bitter taste in your mouth for all those yet to come. After all — the more you search, the better chance you have of finding something sweet.