Online Dating – Have Fun And Avoid The Lurking Dangers

Web Dating Fun

Meeting people on the internet should be enjoyable and fun. You should be able to meet lots of people, spend a little time getting to know each one, narrow them down to the few or the one you think you would like to at least be friends with, and then get to know him, her or them better. Finally you should arrive at a comfortable point where it is time to move to the next stage, personal contact.

The people you wish to eliminate early should recognize that it is not personal, it is not animosity, it is not rudeness. It is simply a matter of having too many options to follow up on every person in detail, and therefore having to exercise your discretion based on limited information together with gut instinct and/or intuition. You can’t spend too much time on every person you encounter so you have to devote the time you do have to those who spark some real interest in you. The people you must quickly reject, assuming you do so in a polite and fair manner, should recognize that it simply wasn’t their moment in time formeeting you.

And if you want to keep it enjoyable and fun, when you are the one being rejected you must recognize the same thing – it wasn’t your moment in time for meeting the person rejecting you. In the simplest terms, keep an open mind and remember that on the internet the options are so endless that the next great potential friend or partner is just around the cyber corner.

But there are other things to keep always in mind in order to enjoy your web dating experience instead of allowing it to become a disaster.

Web Dating Safety

As we have said, web dating can be, and probably 99% of the time is, a lot of fun. The following information is not designed to scare you away from web dating or any other use of the internet. Rather it is intended to help ensure that you never have to fall into that 1% of people who do not end up having a good experience dating on the internet.

There are three general categories of individuals (villains) you can encounter on the web who represent a danger or threat to your web safety, and to some extent to your psychological and even physical well being. These people are the basic scum of the earth and require your ongoing vigilance. We have divided them into three categories based not on the type of activity they engage in, which is similarly fraudulent activity based upon lies and deceit, but is rather divided according to the degree of harm they may be prepared or intending to inflict upon you. They are, from the most harmful to least harmful, the following:

1. Predators

These people are truly one in a million, and there is scant evidence that any of the serious predator crimes discussed under this heading have ever taken place in connection with a web dating site. But there is legitimate concern that it may happen someday. It is of course a major concern with similarly styled predators (pedophiles) preying on children on the internet. So don’t panic please, as owners of an International Online Dating Site, we just feel it our duty to advise you of any risks to be on the lookout for.

Predators have no conscience and are prepared, indeed planning, to do you grievous harm. They include men who have intentions of sexual assaults on unsuspecting women, and individuals, couples or groups who may wish to lure you, be you male or female, halfway around the world in order rob you, kidnap you, enslave you or worse. Of course they are a few individuals out of millions, and your chances of encountering one of them are extremely low, perhaps lower than being struck by lightning, but if you do you should know the signs to look for and the precautions to take.

Of course their plans are detailed and well thought out, so they will always have a good story to tell. Watch out for too good a story. They have an agenda, so watch out for someone who doesn’t want to adapt to your needs. They need to be in control and want to get you on their turf, so don’t let them set all the guidelines as to where your first meeting will take place, or when. If you aren’t easily controlled you make a difficult victim – it becomes easier to just pass on you and look for someone who does what they’re told. However, we are not experts on this subject. If you wish to know more one place you might start is a book called “Web Stalkers – Protect Yourself from Internet Criminals and Psychopaths”, written by Donald Andert & Donald K. Burleson.

2. Scammers

Scammers are individuals who do not have intentions of inflicting any physical damage upon you; they just want your money. Unfortunately these people abound on web dating sites. Quality Online Dating Sites are taking as many steps as possible to weed this type of member out. Unfortunately, it isn’t possible to catch them all in advance and we require some evidence that a member is scamming before we can refuse them or terminate their memberships. Websites that charge for services are going to be far more diligent about guarding against Scammers, and in fact the so called “Free” sites have some reason to welcome Scammers as they are the ones that really are best at appealing to many members and keeping the site busy. If you find someone clearly trying to scam you, report their activities to the website. If you aren’t satisfied with their response condsider moving on to another site. A Quality Site will also notify all members when a Scammer has been discovered to ensure that no one else is caught in their web.

Scammers are almost invariably (probably 95% of the time) registered on a dating site as a female member. That doesn’t mean they are female, frequently the person behind the female profile is a man, and just as frequently a couple, one man and one woman. The scammer will develop your interest in her, and then start to need your assistance, financial assistance specifically. At first, usually the amount she needs seems so small to you that you can’t believe it is a scam. In your mind it just isn’t enough to bother with. Maybe she developed a computer problem, and if she can’t get it fixed how can she continue to communicate with you? Maybe her Mom is ill and needs some medicine. She hates to place her problems in your lap, but she feels so close to you already, and she has nowhere else to turn. Of course you’ll send her the $50 needed to solve this problem. You love that she would ask you to help.

The tricky part is that it could easily be true, maybe her computer really did break down, maybe her Mom really is sick. You can’t be sure and to turn her down may just cost you the most wonderful chance at happiness you’ve had in years. It could all be true, and the scammer knows that, that’s why her/his story is so good. But it may not be true, and there may be 19 other guys falling for the same story at the same time. Suddenly that $50 is actually $1,000 and that’s a nice monthly income in China, and a small fortune in a place like Russia, Vietnam and most other third world countries.

And it could just be stage one of a plan to eventually invade your bank account or turn you into a monthly supporter. We have heard from good sources of female members on some Russian sites who have 4 or more “fianc├ęs”, each of whom is supporting her with a good monthly income.

Other scams involve simply getting you to provide your email address, which batched in with hundreds of others is a saleable commodity. Or to have you click on a link that will ultimately allow her/him full access to your computer, your identity, your personal information and ultimately, your bank account.

Watch out for a member who too quickly wants you to go directly to personal email contact. If in that first or second message you are already being asked to email her address from your own, ask yourself why? You can continue to message her from your Web Dating site for a long time at no additional cost. One of your greatest protections is just to stay on the dating site for communications until you are confident she is for real. The scammer desperately wants off site as quickly as possible, to avoid being caught and to get more personal. Usually a scammer will tire after maintaining contact on the site for even a few messages, because she/he wants easier targets to deal with. She/he will drop you and move on to easier fish to catch.

Of course watch out for someone who too quickly asks for money. In the case of our website, which focuses on Chinese women and International Men, we can confidently say that genuine and sincere Chinese ladies do not wish to lose face with you, and to ask a stranger for money is a loss of face. She will do almost anything to find other sources of money, friends or family, a second job, even selling something she owns, before she will lose face with you if she is genuinely interested in you for the right reasons. And we bet this is true of all women who really are interested in you, not only Chinese women.

3. Game Players

Game Players are website members who are not after your money, but they are after something of value – your pride, your psyche, your sense of well being. They are usually male members, but that statistic is becoming less true all the time. These are people who, for some reason, stroke their own egos by damaging yours. It’s okay to play games if the person on the other side is also playing games, and both sides are aware of it. But it’s quite another thing to deceive someone into trusting you just so you can deflate their pride or even break their heart. But for some reason the game player thinks that a “loss” for you is a “win” for him/her.

The variety of games being played is endless, far too varied for us to provide a list. In the case of male game players, probably the ultimate goal is a consensual sexual conquest. But it might be a final giving in to a request for sexy pictures, or something more innocent, like simply having a number of women’s interest, all wanting him at the same time. For the female game player the goal might be receipt of nice gifts, especially from several men at the same time, or maybe she finds self worth in being told she is loved and admired by as many men as possible. The point is, don’t let your self worth suffer at the hands of these people.

As the dating site it is almost impossible for us to control this behavior. We can’t terminate someone’s membership because another person complains of ill treatment unless that is backed up by solid evidence, and solid evidence is almost impossible to provide. Given undeniably clear evidence of improper behavior we will terminate a member’s status, but it almost always becomes one member’s word against another, and we cannot be the one to judge on that basis. However, we do offer one excellent tool to protect you from another member’s unwanted attention, your Blacklist. On Quality Online Dating sites you are entitled to place any other member you wish on your Blacklist and once on your Blacklist that other member is unable to contact you in any manner.

Watch out for someone who is too quick to express real love (why would someone seriously searching for a life partner jump into “love” overnight), someone who seems preoccupied while chatting with you (maybe he/she is chatting with several members at once), someone who doesn’t remember the things you’ve written in your profile or told him/her in a previous message (maybe he/she is juggling too many dates) or someone who says something in a chat or a message that doesn’t seem to be directed at you, like asking you about Sidney, Australia, when you live in Vancouver, Canada (maybe you’re being confused with someone else on his/her list of conquests).

Most importantly of all, when you find yourself the victim of a game player, remember that it is his/her fragile sense of self worth that brought you there, not your own. He/she is truly the “loser”. Don’t give up on the rest of the members of your favorite site because most of them are truly, sincerely and honestly searching for you. Take care to avoid the Predators, Scammers and Game Players, and Online Dating can be great fun and it can lead to a true and lasting relationship.

Online Dating Guide – How to Choose Your Best Screen Name to Attract Love on Internet Dating Sites

There are millions of singles seeking love in online dating sites. If you’d like to stand out among the crowd of great singles, learn how to choose your best screen name that helps you attract the great love of your life on internet dating sites.

What is a screen name?

This is a catchy name that you choose to identify yourself in your photo and dating profile. You will be known by this name in each communication you post with members of your online dating site.

No one will learn your real name, unless you reach a friendly point in communication and decide that you want to reveal it.

Your screen name helps you stand out among the crowd of great singles and create a great first impression, so it is important to choose wisely.

How do you choose wisely?

Think of your screen name as the name of your own radio show. The name you choose catches the attention of your ideal audience and makes them want to tune into you.

Like attracts like, so choose a screen name that attracts a love match who likes what you have to offer. This is your chance to focus on your weaknesses or your strengths.

If you choose the name, MRLONELYHEART, you will attract a match who shares your loneliness.

If you choose the name, GREATGUY4U, you will attract a match who is seeking a great guy.

What if you were deciding between the names QUEENOFDIAMONDS or QUEENOFHEARTS? Is money or love most important to you? This is what your choice of screen name reveals to your match.

Imagine the type of match you will attract with two variations of a screen name: 1KnightStand, versus YourIntimateKnight.

If you seek a healthy relationship with lasting love, which screen name would you choose?

Your best screen name reflects what you truly seek or offer and it attracts a potential love match who values this. Those who don’t will pass you by and that’s okay. No need to waste your precious time with someone who doesn’t appreciate what you have to offer. Your best screen name attracts a match who is on your wavelength.

How do you choose your best screen name?

To discover your best screen name, focus on your strengths. Make a list of your best qualities, talents, hobbies, passions and special contributions that you bring to a new relationship.

What are your top three favorites? Can you add “4U” to show what you offer your love match?

How do you want to introduce yourself to the great love of your life? Now that is the best screen name for you to choose!

The Psychology of Online Dating: The Psychologist’s Viewpoint

Psychologists interested in dating and attraction have learned a great deal by reading and examining the personal advertisements and ‘lonely hearts’ pages of local and national newspapers. Since we psychologists have benefited from the people who use these services it seems only right that some of the things we’ve found should be given back. In this series of articles I will outline some of the more practically useful findings that have come from this research and provide a summary of the results reported in academic psychology journals, written for those who probably have the greatest interest in this knowledge: the daters themselves.

There is quite a bit of material to cover so I have organised it into a series of six articles:

The Psychologist’s Viewpoint

This article gives an idea of the scope of research using personal advertisements, the way personal profiles are used in research, and the kind of things psychologists can find out when they put their minds to it.

He wants and she is

This outlines research into the things that men say they are looking for in a partner. Alongside this we look at how women describe themselves. Combining these we can assess how accurately women understand what men want and use the right kind of language to attract a man’s interest. This one is particularly useful for the girls and should help you write something for the ‘in your own words’ bit of your profile.

She wants and he is

This article gives the opposite perspective to the previous one, looking at the things that women say they want in a partner and the way that men describe themselves. Do these match up? Have men got it right or are they missing the point completely? This one might help the boys rethink the content of their ‘own words’ parts of their dating profiles.

Like for Like or Opposites Attract?

This article summarises the results in the previous two and uses these to outline the current psychological theories of attraction. It explains how ‘like attracts like’ and ‘opposites attract’ can both be true and how this can help you when you are first making contact with someone after reading their profile.

Blitzers, Boasters and Being Choosy

This article looks at research into general approaches to dating including the results found by researchers who experimentally placed different versions of personal advertisements and then sat back to see how many and what kind of responses they got.

Summary and Practical Uses

The final article of this series summarises all that has gone before and places this new knowledge firmly in the context of online dating, describing how these results can be constructively used to make fewer mistakes and to improve your chances of attracting responses to your profile and getting a positive response to your first approach to someone.

Before getting into the results of the research we need to take a brief tour around the ways in which research psychologists use personal advertisements and the kinds of things they can find, so we have some idea of the sort of things that psychologists can and cannot say about personal advertisements and internet dating profiles.

Content Analysis

Personal advertisements have been a rich source of information for social scientists investigating dating behaviours. To give an idea of the scale of this enterprise, my own research in this area is based on the analysis of nearly five thousand advertisements collected from UK local newspapers. Apart from this I have copies of more than sixty research reports published by colleagues in Brazil, Canada, Hungary, Japan, Poland, UK and USA. This adds up to about thirty thousand individual profiles that have been analysed by psychologists, sociologists and other professional researchers. Most of this research has used printed personal ads extracted from newspapers and magazines as these are more useful to us (as explained below) but the information and insights gained can be applied to any situation where first impressions come from written descriptions, so these results are directly relevant and useful to people using internet dating sites.

Creating a profile for an internet dating site usually involves describing yourself on a whole host of listed options such as eye colour (blue, green etc.), smoking habit, attractiveness, salary etc. This information is usually entered into the site using a form. Within this form each person makes their own choices from the options available but because it is a form, everyone has to mention the same kinds of things. In a sense, the dating site has already decided what the important features are and you simply tick the correct boxes when describing yourself and describing the sort of person you want to meet.

With printed personal advertisements there is no detailed form to fill in and you can write whatever you want. The only restriction is on the number of words with an escalating charge per word up to a maximum limit. As a result these advertisements are quite short, averaging about 22 words. This is typically enough space to mention about nine things, whether these are your own attributes (age, hair and eye colour, looks) or things you are looking for in a partner (sense of humour, marital status, age range, personality, height). Given these restrictions we can reasonably expect that people mention the most important things as they see it, so the content of these advertisements tell us what characteristics the writers think are important to the other sex, and what key things they are looking for themselves. For example, a personal advertisement that says “Stunning, curvy and adventurous 22 year old blonde female is looking for a financially secure older man, ideally with own hair and teeth, who will spoil her rotten.” gives a pretty clear indication of what matters to this person and what she is offering in return.

Researchers have taken thousands of personal advertisements and analysed them to look for general patterns. From this, they have identified some very clear differences between the kinds of things that are important to men and women when looking for a partner. They have also looked at how well the self descriptions of each sex matches the features that the other sex says they want, giving an indication of how much each sex understands about what the other sex is looking for. Results from this kind of research are discussed in the articles He wants and she is, and She wants and he is.

Apart from the specific attributes and features mentioned, there are also more general differences in how people write these descriptions. For example women tend to give more detailed information about the sort of person they are looking for than men, while men are more focussed on describing themselves. Looking at a profile from this perspective tells us quite a lot about the approach people take to dating, including whether they are looking for a few high quality matches or just want as many dates as they can possibly get. This research is summarised in the article Blitzers, Boasters and Being Choosy.

Knowing how people describe themselves and the sort of thing they are looking for also allows us to look at broader questions such as whether people are looking for others who are similar to themselves or would prefer a partner who is different but, in some sense, complementary. This is discussed in the article Like for Like or Opposites Attract where we find that both are true once we understand a more basic and useful theory of attraction.

Experimental Research

Apart from examining the advertisements that real people have written in the hope of finding a partner, psychologists have occasionally become active researchers and have placed experimental personal advertisements to see how many and what type of response they get. For example, if two almost identical advertisements are placed and one receives twice as many responses as the other, this tells us that the difference between these ads (which may be as small as one word) has a big effect on the chances of attracting a date.

Some psychologists have also used this type of research to investigate the sort of things that men and women write when responding to an advertisement. This has given researchers another way to classify the different approaches to dating and to identify groups such as the ‘blitzers’ who send responses to everyone in the hope that some of them will score a hit. Results from this experimental research are presented in the article Blitzers, Boasters and Being Choosy.

This article has outlined the organisation and content of this series, has introduced the ways in which psychologists approach dating research, and has indicated the sort of things they may be able to see from their viewpoint as researchers.

In the next article we move on to looking at some actual findings. He wants and she is looks at the features that women tend to emphasis when advertising themselves, the things that men are actually looking for, and whether or not womens’ self descriptions suggest they are marketing themselves well and have an accurate insight into what men want.