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The New Rules of Web Dating

The New Rules of Web Dating

Date 2012-12-11 07:00:23

Forget everything you’ve heard about digital dating.

When it comes to love online, all the rules have changed.

It started innocently enough, you read the profile, liked the photo, checked the website’s compatibility score to see if you were a match and voila!  You’re with said soul mate for the rest of your life, living gloriously and happily ever after…

Too bad it didn’t pan out quite like that, huh?

Could it be that “happily ever after” didn’t pan out so well, because said soul mate, wasn’t a good match for you in the first place? In fact, beyond the rock star good looks and charming virtual flirts, Mr./Mrs. Right and you had little in common from the start, correct?  And, if you’re being completely honest with yourself, when things fell apart, you may have even felt slightly reassured that the process of finding the right person and falling in love is less strategic and calculated than a computer generated algorithm. 

So if you’re starting over, take heart - online dating sites are moving further away from “you should be a match” and closer to the “you decide if it’s a match” business model.  As for Oliver Andreas founder of, an online dating site specifically for fit and active singles, this couldn’t be better news for soulmate seekers.  

“Personally, I find the antiquated, technologically mediated pursuit of love feels a little forced,” says Andreas. “My wife and I have found that it is isolating to share beliefs in a world that is so contrary to what we believe in. We have seen marriages and relationships dissolve because of the realization that a partner does not share the same beliefs and are not willing to support one and other on their journey.”  In that respect, Andreas and his wife presented their online dating solution for members of their active yoga community who wanted to find a like-minded match. touts itself to having perfected the art and Zen of thoughtful and conscious matchmaking. Our approach is simple says Andreas, “We want to help singles find lasting happiness in another, where their spiritual beliefs, core values, and conscious lifestyle are shared and deeply appreciated.”

A radical approach to finding love?  Not really. Long before the web had inextricably woven itself into the fabric of society, and started making matches based on useless algorithms and random digital matches, soulmates were often found at local events or activities of like-minded singles. Many of us fell in love for the first time in the age of dances, friendly parties and local hang-out points.  Nowadays, technologically mediated hyperlinked social media gets us connected – and keeps us there - in more ways than one.

When it comes to the internet feeding cupid, social networks help to provide a great context for a potential match. It’s rather simple to see a similarity with another single based on the number of shared connections, social “likes” and even status updates and online photo albums.  Digital dating nowadays, gives singles a good sense of who they’re getting involved with thanks to subject-specific commanlities that are key to sparking that initial flame. 

As for all that common ground amping the relationship with a better chance of success, studies show that’s exactly what most singles are looking for in a potential mate.  In fact, researchers at the University of Chicago found that people were twice as likely to find a date through friends and family than through the bar scene.  In another study, researchers found that ninety-two percent of single parents would rather date other single parents. And, in a study of married folks, 8 out of 10 believe that having similar interests is a good indication of how successful a relationship will be in the long run.

So, if you’re in the market of finding love in the digital world, you’d be well advised to follow the sage counsel of financial advisors and bankers alike: Diversify your portfolio.  Be as specific about your values, goals and dreams as you can in your profile.  You don’t want someone who loves pythons and thinks that wrestlers are cool, if those things don’t blow your hair back.  And don’t neglect Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare either. Those types of social networking sites are a great way to notice commonalities between individuals long before getting involved. In fact, with the help of virtual connection, you’ll soon see that there are usually no more than six degrees of separation between many of us.  For many singles out there, it’s a start.  



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