Author: has written 7 posts for this blog.

Return to: Homepage | Blog Index

26 Responses

  1. AtheistChick
    AtheistChick August 9, 2011 at 10:36 pm |

    I like this post. While I, too, am a “judgmental bitch” about the bad spelling and grammar (especially misuse of “your”), I did manage to meet my husband online. I had always worried about dating military, and especially military that lived two hours away, but after we met several months after we had exchanged numbers, we totally clicked. I probably wouldn’t have given my now-husband a second look had I met him in person first.

  2. Sara
    Sara August 9, 2011 at 10:58 pm |

    Plus, OKCupid permits you to view a number of questions each user has answered, including ones which would reveal sometimes-hidden dealbreakers like various forms of social prejudice.

    I, too, have met quite a number of perfectly nice, friendly people through OKCupid, some of which I’m still friends with. I also met my current partner on the site (our first anniversary is coming up soon!), and I might not have given him a second look had I met him in person first, either.

  3. Kendra
    Kendra August 10, 2011 at 1:27 am |

    I hate to be saying this but aren’t trivial things like ‘u’ vs ‘you’ a subtle form of classism and racism? Kids from lower class backgrounds are far more likely to use text messaging kind of language in email communications possibly since they aren’t exposed to formal written language as much and there isn’t anyone to correct them. In fact, the whole filter of education is basically a class filter and little more.

    1. Jill
      Jill August 10, 2011 at 8:11 am | *

      I hate to be saying this but aren’t trivial things like ‘u’ vs ‘you’ a subtle form of classism and racism? Kids from lower class backgrounds are far more likely to use text messaging kind of language in email communications possibly since they aren’t exposed to formal written language as much and there isn’t anyone to correct them. In fact, the whole filter of education is basically a class filter and little more.

      I mean… maybe? But I dunno, my mom writes emails like that too. And I actually think it’s a little condescending to suggest that kids from lower-class backgrounds aren’t exposed to formal written language.

      That said, I also don’t think anyone has an obligation to date someone who can’t put together a coherent message just because that lack of coherency might indicate a lower class background.

  4. Rare Vos
    Rare Vos August 10, 2011 at 8:17 am |

    I hate to be saying this but aren’t trivial things like ‘u’ vs ‘you’ a subtle form of classism and racism?

    . . . and racism? Fucking seriously?

    I mean… maybe?

    No, it isn’t. Despite the obvious implication here that if you’re poor and/or black you obviously don’t know proper spelling and grammar, someone filing out an online profile should, presumably, be *TRYING*.

    if they can’t be arsed to put even minimum effort, then you can probably safely assume that they don’t put even the minimum effort into relationships either.

  5. Esti
    Esti August 10, 2011 at 8:24 am |

    Kendra: In fact, the whole filter of education is basically a class filter and little more.

    I don’t understand this — are you saying that restricting your dating pool to those with a certain level of education is just a way of weeding out low income people? Because I have a bunch of lawyer friends earning very little money (and for that matter, some unemployed friends with PhDs) who would disagree with you there.

  6. Ann
    Ann August 10, 2011 at 8:31 am |

    I met my husband online on EHarmony, which is amusing and ironic because we are different races and neither of us are Christian. We are not expecting to be asked to be on one of their commercials. :)

    I was totally a judgmental bitch – why not? I don’t want to be with someone who says his main hobby is lifting weights or who posts a photo of themselves shirtless with some cheesy tribal tattoos.

  7. Rare Vos
    Rare Vos August 10, 2011 at 8:39 am |

    There are plenty of fratstars out there who attended Ivy League schools who use these abbreviations. I think it comes from being lazy more than anything

    Exactly. That laziness says something about that person. Some won’t care, some will. And, to echo the OP, one advantage of online dating is that you don’t even have to suffer through a conversation with this person to discover they’re incompatible. Just click on by.

    That said, (like I said at Pandagon about this), online date’s biggest disadvantage is that a reasonable and/or positive sounding profile can still be covering a Nice Guy ™ douche and there can be no warning UNTIL you meet them.

  8. Sheelzebub
    Sheelzebub August 10, 2011 at 8:40 am |

    I worked with engineers with Ph.D.’s who used “u” instead of “you,” etc. Not to mention people with Master’s Degrees (one with an MA in English) who does this. And I have a lot of friends in my town who are blue-collar, not college educated, and really HATE text speak in anything other than texts.

    I also know people who do it when they text, but who write out full words and sentences in emails and letters (unless they’re being ironic or being obvious in a snarky “I’m engaging in netspeak naow, srsly he needs to lurk moar amirite??”)

    I’ll admit that mixing up “you’re” and “your” (and misuse of apostrophes) gets on my last nerve (and I do it and then HATE MYSELF FOR IT OH GOD SHEELZEBUB WHY OH WHY DID YOU MAKE SUCH A BASIC MISTAKE???) but I try to overlook it. What sets *my* teeth on edge is overuse of emoticons. My personal experience with people I know who use them a lot is that they’re masking rage and/or bullying issues, or are just plain being patronizing. So now my knee-jerk reaction when I see lots of emoticons in an email is to wince–which I suppose isn’t fair since not everyone who does it has those issues. But gah. It really turns me off.

  9. Miriam
    Miriam August 10, 2011 at 8:50 am |

    I can definitely relate, especially about the spelling. And many other things. For instance, I can’t STAND it when someone writes, “I’m a pretty chill guy.” What does that even mean? Ugh.

    At the same time, I’ve gone on dates with guys that I might never have approached in real life and I’m glad I did.

  10. Rare Vos
    Rare Vos August 10, 2011 at 9:29 am |

    I can’t STAND it when someone writes, “I’m a pretty chill guy.”

    My favorite is “I hate filling these things out. Message me if you want to know more.”

    Always makes me thinks there’s absolutely nothing more to learn, apart from the fact that he’s too boring and lazy to spend 10 minutes typing ABOUT HIMSELF.

  11. Andie
    Andie August 10, 2011 at 9:29 am |

    I’ve started trying to still read some of the mis-spelled profiles while trying to differentiate between guys who seem to be just too fucking lazy to spell properly and those who may still be intelligent, but just crappy spellers. I’ve known people who are ridiculously thoughtful and intelligent but may be dealing with a learning disability.

    There are tells though. I can forgive a your/you’re mistake (because I do it too, and like Sheezlebub, I friggin’ HATE myself when I do) but if I start seeing ur or u r then CLICK I’m on to the next guy.

  12. Andie
    Andie August 10, 2011 at 9:30 am |

    Rare Vos: My favorite is “I hate filling these things out.Message me if you want to know more.”

    Always makes me thinks there’s absolutely nothing more to learn, apart from the fact that he’s too boring and lazy to spend 10 minutes typing ABOUT HIMSELF.

    Oh. My. God. THIS.

    Or the messages that just say “Hi.” *facepalm*

  13. Tei Tetua
    Tei Tetua August 10, 2011 at 10:45 am |

    “Online dating makes it easier to be a judgmental bitch…
    Sing it, sister!”

    Sing it, sisters!

    If certain kinds of things tick you off, like casual misuse of language, you can skip someone’s profile or their message, and just say, “Reject. Next!” I totally agree that in an online pre-dating setup, you want to project yourself realistically but attractively. If you do that with textspeak and imaginative spelling, many people will pass by with a shudder. On the other hand, perhaps someone else will say, “Hey, here’s someone who isn’t stuffy and snobbish about writing, lol. Think I’ll send a reply, lol.” So let us not to the marriage of true minds admit impediments. Lol.

    My SO and I met through a personal ad online, and we still refer to it occasionally. As in “But your ad said…” or “You can’t complain about that if you replied to an ad that said…”

  14. Comrade Kevin
    Comrade Kevin August 10, 2011 at 11:30 am |

    Based on my limited experience, every city, state, or region will differ. The motifs present in NYC will be nothing like those in Kansas City. People always tell me that dating is hell for young professional women in New York City and for Washington, DC. This may not be the case otherwise.

    I do agree with the premise of this article, but often personality alone isn’t sufficient to have a successful experience. The prevailing culture is often more influential.

  15. zuzu
    zuzu August 10, 2011 at 11:33 am |

    Rare Vos: My favorite is “I hate filling these things out. Message me if you want to know more.”

    OH FUCK YES.

    Or the ones who act like they’re so above it all, that it’s a waste of their precious time to be filling out an online dating profile, because you should just sense their studliness and awesomeness through the intertoobs. And I’m not talking about the ones who run out of steam at some point, because those things take forever to fill out, but the ones who don’t bother because they think they’re too good for it, and they want you to know that as well.

    Sheelzebub: I worked with engineers with Ph.D.’s who used “u” instead of “you,” etc. Not to mention people with Master’s Degrees (one with an MA in English) who does this. And I have a lot of friends in my town who are blue-collar, not college educated, and really HATE text speak in anything other than texts.

    You know, I recently had to hire a teaching assistant for my legal research and writing class. I approached a student whose professor had recommended her as a good candidate. She lost the job when she used “u” in her email to me. I don’t feel sorry about that at all.

  16. Hershele Ostropoler
    Hershele Ostropoler August 10, 2011 at 12:20 pm |

    Really, anyone who is negative about the idea of online dating is probably not going to be a good match for someone who is, you know, on a dating site.

    If that was true when I was last single, in 2004, it’s gotta be even truer now.

  17. DP
    DP August 10, 2011 at 12:29 pm |

    Kendra:
    I hate to be saying this but aren’t trivial things like ‘u’ vs ‘you’ a subtle form of classism and racism? Kids from lower class backgrounds are far more likely to use text messaging kind of language in email communications possibly since they aren’t exposed to formal written language as much and there isn’t anyone to correct them. In fact, the whole filter of education is basically a class filter and little more.

    I don’t actually think personal relationships and dating are a good place to practice affirmative action-type things. In a workplace, it would be unacceptable to reject someone based on attractiveness, some cultural practice, personal opinions, race.

    In the dating world, you’re totally in your rights to do so, and forcing it won’t be helpful (race is a bit trickier, I guess. People shouldn’t be racist, but they might be more ‘attracted’ to their own – or other – racial phenotypes).

  18. Rare Vos
    Rare Vos August 10, 2011 at 4:23 pm |

    but the ones who don’t bother because they think they’re too good for it, and they want you to know that as well

    And I’m sure they’re just absolutely mystified that they’re single and so few women respond.

    Another personal favorite is when, after looking at your questionnaire answers, they DEMAND you EXPLAIN your answer to such and such. Not ask, DEMAND.

    LOL. Yeah, dude, I’ll get right on that.

    NEXT!

  19. addy
    addy August 10, 2011 at 5:12 pm |

    Tei Tetua: On the other hand, perhaps someone else will say, “Hey, here’s someone who isn’t stuffy and snobbish about writing[..."]

    Yes. I am a grad student in Classics (Greek and Latin). I know very well how to use “your” and “you’re” correctly, and I did proofread my own OkCupid profile carefully. But if I make a silly spelling or punctuation mistake in a quick message that I dashed off on my phone because I wanted to make sure I got back to you before I had to go to work, and you judge me for that, then good riddance. I have some standards when it comes to language usage, but I do not want to date someone who will think less of me because I make mistakes now and then. Go ahead and pass me by.

  20. Trish
    Trish August 10, 2011 at 6:05 pm |

    Rare Vos: My favorite is “I hate filling these things out.Message me if you want to know more.”

    Always makes me thinks there’s absolutely nothing more to learn, apart from the fact that he’s too boring and lazy to spend 10 minutes typing ABOUT HIMSELF.

    THIS! So much.

    Or you get the ones from POF that say “blah blah blah trying to fill up the space blah blah blah” because they didn’t type enough characters in their profile.

    My other pet peeve is when I dude I am chatting with will say “You can talk about feminism if you want.” like it’s some cute hobby like knitting or something.

  21. Bonn
    Bonn August 11, 2011 at 1:54 am |

    Sometimes that awful way of writing can be cultural, too. I have a few Singaporean friends, and (thankfully not to me or I’d go nuts) between each other they slip into the more Singlish style of writing, which includes a lot of dun u no type of language. It’s awful to read. I guess that no matter who’s writing it (whether from Singapore or Denver) I imagine it read like kind of … caveman speak. Kind of a “me Tarzan” sort of voice in my head. I hear words as I read them, so it never comes out very good.

    I used to use OKC just to meet people in the area. There are plenty of options for folks who aren’t looking for dates and I’ve known plenty of folks who use the site to make friends, so I just clicked on those options and that was that. Then had to argue with guys who said, “lol y r u on a dating site if u dun want dates lol.” You know, ARGUING with me isn’t going to change my mind about why I’m on the site.

    Anyway, it just got to be too painful. Too many of the guys who messaged me thought they were being super clever. I said I wouldn’t reply to “hi hru” so every guy opened up with “hi hru lol neway …”

  22. GumbyAnne
    GumbyAnne August 11, 2011 at 12:59 pm |

    I once had a guy message me that he hated my profile because he can tell from it that I feel bad about slavery (?!?!).

    I also had a guy once send a message that just said “wanna go dancing sometime?” then when I didn’t reply within a week sent me a follow-up message that said “go f*** yourself”

    Who knows whether either of them would have so perfectly exposed their assholishness right of the bat if we had met in real life?

  23. Jenna
    Jenna August 11, 2011 at 5:50 pm |

    I have met some really wonderful people through OKCupid, and gone on some great dates…..there have also been a couple dates that revealed the shortcomings of online dating.

    Someone can be completely truthful on their profile, and still leave out things that turn out to be important details. There was the guy who seemed to be interesting online, but, in person only talked about his ex. There was also the guy who was too cheap to buy a cup of drip coffee on a coffee date. I bought my own coffee, and he was late and ended up not buying any drink at all.

    I also don’t appreciate the guys that message me with just, “Hi” or “How are u. Like ur pix.” I don’t care how you spell that sentence, or don’t spell it. It is not a good start.

    The first messages that were interesting and easy to reply to(seriously, make the message easy to reply to if you actually want a reply!) all contained direct but polite questions about something on my profile.

  24. Sunday Hustle 14/8/11 | Girls Are Made From Pepsi

    [...] Have you tried online dating before? Venturing into the cyber-world of courtship is one of the most frustrating, hilarious and uncomfortable aspects of the world-wide-web. I wonder if Tim Berners-Lee (that’s the Grand Poombah of the Web, FYI) envisioned that his baby would be connecting would-be casanovas with unsuspecting young ladies? I feel as though online dating is only socially acceptable (and only just!) within the 25+ crowd and the gay scene. But what’s it really like? Tyla from Feministe dishes the dirt. (Feministe) …online dating has also given me the chance to date outside my comfort zone. Okay, to be fair, getting approached by a man in real life almost always puts me outside my comfort zone, and I very rarely give out my number. But anyway, online dating has allowed me to look at a man I might not be interested in based on a short meeting in real life, notice all the awesome things we have in common, and eventually, give out my number. He likes Scrabble? One point. He likes this random, obscure book that I’m obsessed with? Two points. He likes cheese? Five points. Oh my god, he works for NPR?! That’s like a million points. Yes, a million. Come on! He could be the next Ira Glass! No? A girl can dream. [...]

Comments are closed.

The commenting period has expired for this post. If you wish to re-open the discussion, please do so in the latest Open Thread.