There is no question that the popularity of online dating has revolutionized the way potential couples meet each other. These days, it is not uncommon for the average single person to participate in an online dating service. In fact, this trend is fast becoming the norm. In 2004, it was estimated that residents in the U.S. spent more than $460 million on online dating services.
It goes without saying that online dating is big business in America. There are many reasons why people find this method of meeting new people so appealing. For one thing, everyone is doing it! The number of online dating services on the internet is so abundant, many of which offer services, absolutely for free.
The combination of curiosity and the desire to meet new, exciting people is what usually lure individuals to be a part of an online dating service community. But this new activity doesn’t come without a price.
Sure it doesn’t happen all the time, but just every now and then horror stories about online dating services would arise. Some of them are scary enough to send casual observers away from these online dating services for good.
One of the problems facing the industry of online dating service is that its participants often misrepresent themselves in the profiles that they create. Not everyone tells the truth. People have been known to lie about everything, including their marital status. Some married individuals try to pass themselves off as single; while others lie about their physical appearance, age, economic status, and even gender.
For an inexperienced online dater, the danger lurks at every corner. But there are some safety measures prospective participants can take to help guide them through a safe online dating experience.
Rule of the thumb: most online dating services the offer subscription are relatively safer than those individuals that can be accessed for free. Those sites that require membership offer a set of requirements, and guidelines that aspiring members would have to meet before they become subscribers.
There are even some sites that are so exclusive, that anyone who wants to join has to undergo an intensive screening process first. Background checks are done on aspiring members to make sure that the information they have given checks out.
Some more safety tips when it comes to online dating:
1. Participants should pay attention to the consistency of the information given to them by the persons they are corresponding with. This way, they’d be able to detect if they’re lying.
2. Online daters should protect their identity. One of the greatest things about online dating is that it offers participants anonymity. Personal information like: address, last name, phone number, is not revealed until the participant decides to do so. Participants should be extremely careful about divulging personal information that will make it possible for the people they are communicating with to directly locate them.
3. Participants should abruptly cease communication with people who are obsessed with acquiring personal information about them.
4. Participants should always keep a look out for warning signs when they are talking to people, such as: the use of foul language, signs of anger for no apparent reason, elusiveness in answering direct questions, makes disrespectful remarks, etc. These are some of the symptoms that spell something could terribly go wrong. The person that is exhibiting these types of behavior may not be trustworthy, and may lead others to danger.
5. Once an online dater has decided to meet his or her date, they should agree to have a meeting place. Individuals should never allow their dates to meet them at home.
Online dating is similar to real life dating in the sense that individuals should always practice common sense and caution, whenever they meet someone new. Even though, the interaction takes place online, once people have revealed personal information about them to others, they won’t be able to take them back.
It is best to always use one’s instincts and logic when it comes to dealing with other people, even when it comes to online dating. This is where some people fall prey to cheaters, deceivers, and even sexual offenders. They go against their better judgment. If something feels amiss, like there is something not quite right, then this is probably a sign that something can go terribly wrong.
It is best to get out of this situation whenever this occurs. As the saying goes: “Better be safe than be sorry”. A saying that online dating service participant should always remember.