Pick your prospective dating partners with care

It may be fun and exciting to look for love online, but you need to keep in mind that there are far too many nutters out there – and that if you let them into your life, you could end up getting seriously hurt.

One particularly fine and upstanding citizen, 36 year old Sean Melville, was recently convicted of raping a woman he met through an online dating service. The incident occurred after a night out in Bathgate, West Lothian, where the convicted rapist consumed  both lager and vodka to excess before he and his victim, a mother of two, to the woman’s home.

Melville soon became belligerent and abusive towards the woman, starting a row because she neglected to fix him something to eat, according to Susanne Tanner, the advocate depute that prosecuted the case in court. The intoxicated man interrogated the victim on whether she had been taking other men to the pub, insulting her and then physically assaulting her by pushing her down on a nearby couch; the woman, who had had quite enough at that point, told the man to sleep in the spare room before going to bed herself.

Unfortunately, this did not dissuade Melville, who followed the 37 year old mother upstairs a moment or two later, demanding sex from her. Ms Tanner then described how the man raped the woman repeatedly throughout the night; the abused woman only reported the rape once she discovered that her assailant was looking for new women to assault on the dating website where they had originally met.

Melville admitted to the rape at Edinburgh’s High Court. The man remains in custody until his sentencing next month.

eHarmony security compromised

For those of you feeling safe and secure in your own little world, convinced that no one would bother hacking a dating site after going after one of the largest business-related social networking sites, think again: eHarmony has announced they’ve fallen victim to the same hacker or hackers that compromised the security of LinkedIn and posted th results on a Russian internet forum.

It was confirmed earlier this week that there was a breach of the online dating site. A ‘small fraction’ of the dating site’s users has been affected, according to eHarmony corporate communications representative, Becky Teraoka, but the number of users that might have been put at risk was not specified – though the website did confirm it had reset the passwords of anyone whose security had been breached.

Truth be told, the hackers didn’t break in and abscond with a bundle of raw passwords but a number of ‘hashes,’ which are versions of the passwords that have been encrypted with a computer algorithm.  However, the passwords can be uncovered with decoding software available to anyone for free, with the only thing standing in between a Russian hacker reading your online dating profile the relative length of your password, as longer ones take more time to crack.

Around 1.5 million of these password hashes were compromised, as they were posted on InsidePro, a password-cracking website hosted in Russia.  The same website is also allegedly responsible for the LinkedIn security breach where anywhere between 5.8 million and 6.5 million hashes were purloined and posted, though business networking site has also announced it was changing passwords and informing its members.

Cheryl Cole runner up in dating poll

Apparently, Cheryl Cole may turn to internet dating sites to find her perfect match after the split from her husband – British soccer player, Ashley, two years ago. Friends have recommended several dating sites for her, but not the sugar daddy site, SeekingArrangement.com, much to that dating site’s disappointment.

The website’s main business involves linking up pretty young women with rich old men and has been running an online poll of its (male) members to find out who their perfect “girlfriend” might be. Cheryl tuned up as number two in the list just after the person who took on her role in the TV series, the X factor, Tulisa Conostavlos.

Not to be seen to be one sided, the sometimes controversial dating website also ran a poll amongst its female members to find out who might be their favourite “sugar daddy”.

Surprise, surprise, Cheryl’s old boss, Simon Cowell turned up as the top candidate for their sugary attention. Perhaps a bit more surprising considering the average age of the sugar daddies was that Prince Harry was the runner up to Cowell at number two – hardly a daddy!

Tom Jones (is he still alive?) crept in at number five.

The two online polls sought the opinions of the 50,000 members that have signed up for SeekingArrangement.com.

Never far from the media limelight, Brandon Wade, who is the founder and CEO of SeekingArrangement, has offered Cheryl Cole a life membership for free. He didn’t quite specify at what age as a “life” member she would naturally stop being a sugar “baby” and turn into a sugar “matron”.

According to Wade, Cowell is the perfect sugar daddy as he is not only stinking rich but over generous to boot. His last fling with Mezhgan Hussainy ended quite amicably recently and to show nohard feelings he gave her a £5 million house in Beverly Hills in token appreciation of their relationship.

Perhaps SeekingArrangement is simply seeking some media attention for its European launch this month. It started up only 6 years ago and has done phenomenally well. A quick look around the online tabloids in Britain at the moment and the dating website gets a lot of mention, with apparently thousands of hard up young women all attempting to enrich their bank accounts by meeting up with rich old codgers using Mr Wade’s website.

Zoosk steps up marketing profile

Online dating site Zoosk is seeking out a consumer agency to market it to become the leading romantic dating website online and on a mobile.

The site has requested that interested parties should send proposals by 30th April. The expanding dating website is on the lookout for creative and proactive local professional assistance to assist it with communication to the British market in a dynamic, forward looking and original manner that mirrors Zoosk’s fundamental personality.

The British market is the website’s second biggest membership after the USA and the time is right to put more investment into promotional tactics to follow its large marketing campaign late last year in order to wage war with rivals such as eHarmony and Match.com.

The company reveals that its survey news has not been able to achieve much in Britain and that it is trying to transform itself from its current flavour of being a social dating community to a base for more romantic social networking, but this has to be advertised through a consumer consciousness and education campaign.

The website executive is intending upon choosing an agency that will set up a strategy of communication to the site’s main audience in the 25 to 49 age group to get them to create and discuss their romantic encounters, whether they are already married or still single.

Zoosk’s communications team is about to fly to London from San Francisco, where it is based, on the 10th and 11th May to conduct face-to-face interviews with interested agencies.

Zoosk currently has a 50 million membership, which is spread across more than seventy countries and members can make arrangements for dates by using the business’s website, mobile applications, a Facebook app and the desktop application.

Sexual corruption takes over girls on the internet

Lacking in security and vying for male attention, Rebecca was only 15 when she started meeting complete strangers for sex using internet based dating sites.
As a teenager, Rebecca suffered low self-esteem and sadly became obsessed with having sex with unknown men she met online to enhance her self-confidence.

Being on her own in a hotel room with a male she had only spoken to 30 minutes before, Becky knew she could not back away. For six months, the teenager had been chatting regularly online to Stuart after coming into contact with him on an internet dating site.

A part of virtual courting involved sending Stuart, who said he was 24 years old, provocative photos of her self. She didn’t question this and just complied.

Once he had bought Becky’s train ticket to travel 200 miles to meet him, it was obvious he was going to expect her to have sex with him. She didn’t want this to happen, but she couldn’t stop herself.

Rebecca said that they had been chatting for several months and had sent sexual messages to one another. She thought this would have to be the next step.

It was her first real life encounter that shocked her as he looked like nothing in the photo. He was certainly not attractive and was a 40-year-old not a 24 year old as he had originally said. Fortunately, the sexual encounter was over quickly.

He paid up for the room and then they said their goodbyes at the station, never to see each other again.

It appears that more and more children are growing up with an addiction to online pornography sites.

One would assume that the degrading experience that Becky went through would put her off internet dating. However, because she is an insecure, overweight teenager, she sought out any type of compliment that might be favourable in return for sex.

Her first encounter with Stuart was the beginning of a 5-year addiction to engaging in sex with males she had met through online dating sites.

Wax lyrical on your dating site profile for greater exposure

The art of creating the perfect dating site profile takes time, patience, constant tweaking and hard work. Certainly for it to work in a way that attracts the type of person you want to get to know, on and off line, from your online dating experience, anyway. And it’s an aspect that many singles overlook in their desperation to be swiftly online and actively chatting in the forums.

But let me ask you this: Once you have started chatting to someone on the dating site forum, or perhaps even before, what do you do? You check out their profile to ensure this is the type of partner you could envision yourself with. Do you not think that the majority of the singles on your dating site do exactly the same before they open conversations with you? Of course they do.

The temptation for many singles who have not taken the time out to craft a dating site profile that they can simply cut and paste, after tweaking their base document to suit the mood on the dating site they’re joining, is to get straight into browsing without providing enough information about themselves that the other members can appraise.

But even that step may be one too soon, as singles rush like the Pamplona Bulls to check out the talent after final taking the plunge to start online dating. Before you upload any personal information about yourself, you have to create a user name, again something that is oft overlooked. But user names are important, even more so if using European dating sites, where as much weight is attributed to the written word, including the user id, as is the profile photograph.

There have been many studies looking into dating site names that do and don’t work, both in the northern and southern hemispheres. So choosing a name that will illicit responses is imperative; tying that name up with incidental data in your profile is an even better.

Julia Spira, she of much dating site renown, recently wrote of her experience choosing a user name from a song she’d heard on the radio; she then set the lead in to her profile as a query to anyone who clicked through in relation to the song from which she derived her dating site id.

The results were astounding. Even if people were not necessarily coming on to her for a date, it did inspire fans of the musician, someone who saw fit to change his name from Reg Dwight – that ought to tell you something about the power of choosing a suitable public moniker – the other dating site members were contacting her to answer the profile query. In fact, her inbox was full of winkers.

So the moral really is, choose a user name that reflects your personality but other members can also identify with and respond to. Pair that with a well-prepared profile, and you, too, can hope to be poked by a whole host of winkers, wanting to get to know you better.

Stick within your league for best dating site results

If you’re new to online dating, you may be apprehensive about sharing some of your personal information due to the hairy stories that make their way into the media. These reports can be from everything to the guy turning out to be a sex offender, the woman demanding money to even get to the first date or your potential partner singing Brotherhood of Man songs all the way through the date. All scary enough in their own rite, it’s true.

But before you get to that meeting up stage, there is plenty of other critical information you need to know about the entities that patrol dating sites under the guise of genuine singles looking for love online, whereas all they are really after is your money and they have developed some ingenious ways of doing it.

Even the most steadfast of singles get caught up in a fantasy web spun by these (generally) organised criminal gangs. But if you know beforehand what you’re looking out for, the telltale signs that you’re being approached by a scammer will stand out like a sore thumb.

Getting the best out of your online dating experience is all about being honest with yourself, not setting your expectations, not getting carried away by trying to impress another single who has caught your eye by pretending to be someone you’re not and, at all times, keep things in perspective by being totally honest with yourself and with anyone who shows interest in you. But not too much heavy personal stuff, at first – that type of information will have everyone on the dating site running for cover. Remember, many dating sites have seven-figure memberships: you are not the be all and all – there are thousands of others members that a single can move on to if you either come on too heavy or do not act within the parameters of dating site etiquette.

That said, you have a vague idea of who is in your league, if you go on the ‘like attract like’ unwritten rule. So if an absolutely stunning blonde of Scandinavian origin or chisel-chinned hunk with bulging biceps approaches you and you are by no means expecting to be contacted by someone of that calibre, start asking yourself: why? Not being funny, there is a 99.9% chance that the photo is not that of the person getting in touch, no matter how much they protest that they are Erika or Brad, rather, the image has been lifted from elsewhere, possibly even another dating site, on t’Internet and there’s an African national hiding behind the dating site profile with a rod and some heavy gauge line just waiting to reel you in.

Another giveaway is the opening line when someone new contacts you for the first time. It won’t open with a coy ‘Hi, there, I was wondering…’ or a ‘Just happened to see your profile…’. It will go straight for the jugular in ill-conceived English. The fraudster will open up with ‘My most beautiful darling,’ or ‘My most gorgeous sweetheart,’. All true enough sentiment when you’ve known someone for a while but, due to the foreign national’s lack of understanding of etiquette – they’ve probably lifted the text from a well-thumbed Mills & Boon – they make this fatal error (if you know to look out for it) upon first contact.

Stick with us; more over the weekend about what to look out for – and, more importantly, to report to the webmaster – to weed out the scammers from the genuine single looking to find you via the medium of online dating.

Is it our dating profile ageing or has the mirror cracked?

There is a very real difference between what dating site owners perceive their users’ experience of their facility is and what the dating site member actually gets from the service. This is personified by a blog I read earlier that backs up something we wrote about here on dating.org.uk only last week, but sheds a little more light on the matter. Today’s other post will back this up further, too.

Earlier this week we reported that nine out of ten people lie on their dating site profile. And that one in ten profiles are made up. Now that figure assumed that the ten percent were sickos, wierdos or perverts. However, having seen evidence today to the contrary, it seems that people are creating multiple profiles purely to extend the net of who they can attract if their existing personals are starting to seem a bit dowdy and not attracting as many hits, messages or coming up in the ‘popular’ search results as often as they did when the dating site member first joined the site.

Now, what does this do to the numbers of members that dating sites claim to have? What makes the story worse for the blogger in question who’d contemplated setting up a second account was that she was already in a relationship with someone she’d met online. By her own admission, she’d been away from the dating site for six months and hadn’t been hit upon as much recently since she stopped using the facility on a regular basis. It seems that, for vanity’s sake only, she was now going to create another persona.

There was no suggestion that she and ‘Banjo Boy’ had stopped dating, just that she liked popping back for a ‘quickie’ but had got the impression that her profile had reached an expiry date. The complex had been brought on by the fact that she’d sent four first messages (an art in which she was prolific, if her self-appraisal is accurate) to singles with PhD’s and none of them had replied. Was she punching above her weight or, by her own admission, were they just not interested in being hunted by the cougar?

Is it right to create another profile just because you want a little more attention than your real information is attracting? Or should she, as another dating site regular commenting on her blog suggested she’d done recently, re-write her profile to reflect her current circumstances, throw out all the old pictures, refresh the words and the photos? Although, it has to be said, she’s not on her own in this; profile photos is one area that both men and women fail at on dating sites. The fairer sex tend to be the worse of the two, using a profile photo eighteen months old and mens a mere six months in comparison, according to one recent survey.

The concluding question was along the line of: “has anyone experienced a similar profile ageing process?” I don’t think it’s the dating site profile that’s got the issue with ageing, do you?

Dating site dementors officially vanquished

The stigma that surrounds the world of online dating has officially been put to bed, according to recent reports coming out of the US, following both scientific research and the success of iDate Miami 2012.

No sooner has dating land shed its undesirable cloak, however, than matchmaking sites are finding themselves coming under attack from some corners of the scientific world on two counts.

At the recent iDate Miami conference – the first of three meetings by the giants of online dating scheduled for this year – there was a heated panel discussion surrounding the merits of calculations and algorithms that were used to select potential partners based on information provided by the individual single when he/she signs up.

The doubt has been cast upon the relevance of how this information is used to couple the dating site members, especially when the volumes of singles looking to fall in love online are so immense. According to Julie Spira in a recent article she wrote for the Huffington Post, everyone now knows a couple who got together via on online dating site or another.

Furthermore, she went on to add in the article that, whilst attending a recent Super Bowl bash, two of the three couples she became engaged with were together thanks to two of the more niche dating sites, namely Jdate and Fitness Singles.

The crux of the current debate, as far as one can make out, is that the professors are now viewing matchmaking sites, who present a range of probable complimentary suitors to any given single based on the information they enter on their hit-list requirement, as a supermarket sweep rather than a way to find ‘the one’, which is how it all began. To be fair, I don’t think anyone in their wildest dreams, when dating sites started to go mainstream, ever hoped for a global $2bn turnover, but that’s where we are with it, now.

Of course, there is objection from those who claim to have dreamt up the strings of logic to produce the matches, both from the CEO’s trying to deflect harm from their brand and the dating site scientists who have achieved prominence on the back of algorithmic love.

There’s an absolute ton of stuff on this topic, so join me for the rest of the week when we’ll be dissecting the frogging life out of all the mumbo jumbo and see what it means for you, the dater.

Sex and its perceived importance in new relationships

You can guarantee that if there’s a survey in the US for singles about the off- and online dating behaviour and it comprises 135 questions, there are going to be a fair few questions about sex thrown. Bless ’em, the latest Singles in America quiz, posed to 5,000 dating site members by Match.com, didn’t disappoint.

There were the theoretical questions on the subject, such as: would you commit to someone you weren’t chemically attracted to? And there were the practical aspects for the genre, referring to limp libidos or just downright amateurish between the sheet experience transposing itself into the act. We’ll look at the theory side another day, but for this exercise, we’ll concentrate on the latter two physical aspects that could seriously jeopardise the longevity of an intimate association.

Would bad sex kill your relationship?

The jury were surprisingly split on this question with no runaway verdict either, in heterosexual or same sex relationships. However, the scenario of being with a lover who just didn’t do it for you between the sheets was slightly more of an issue for the women in both cases, according to the dating site survey.

Sorry, but here’s a bit of maths-exam stylee statistics to back that claim up.

Exactly half of straight women answered that a man who thought a G-spot may be a helping hand from a gay guy down the gym or similar asexual answer would be out the door before they got their slippers beneath the sofa. And 55% of lesbian women questioned said that if their partner was incapable of delivering the big O they would be out the door.  No excuse, really, is there?

Men were slightly less concerned, with only 44% of straight fellas saying they’d terminate proceedings if their partner turned out to be motionless and non experimental whilst they were making the grandest of gestures to satisfy their carnal cravings. And slightly more than half of gay men attested that bad sex was the be-all and end-all, with 52% reckoning they’d be on their way if their man didn’t measure up on that score.

Again, as in Darling, dirty sex doesn’t mean you don’t have to wash it, there is disparity between the age ranges taken to task over the questions.

From the mix of those surveyed, the answers point towards bad sex being more of a deal breaker to the older generation than the young. Whilst less than four in ten people in their twenties said that bad sex meant bye-bye, nearly half of those in the sixties couldn’t live without their regular supply of quality sexual attention.

Is this because, whilst you’re so young, any shortcomings and misdemeanours are overlooked in the hope that there is time to improve? Or could it be that, by the time you reach your sixties, you’ve either learnt all you’re ever going to about the art of making love and/or you know it but can no longer deliver the necessary because of physical or emotional limitations?

Whatever the underlying reason, the first step to not letting poor sex ruin a relationship that can be otherwise quite beautiful is to be able to talk freely about the matter, and not let it become a taboo subject, easier just not to talk about and lock away in a cupboard than face head on. Take the problem at hand in hand, coax it, love it, nurture it and see what grows as a result.

Grindr hacked, sensitive men’s bits slipped into wrong hands

If you’ve followed dating.org.uk‘s ‘news’ for some time, you’ll know that we’re hot on dating site security. If there’s a new app or extension we learn about, we try to let you know about it as soon as we do.

So when we saw this latest post about a breach of dating site security, we naturally checked it out. However, we were quite surprised when we comprehended the nature and depth of this particular security breach; it wasn’t directly another story of woe about an innocent victim who’d been taken in by a false dating site profile purporting to be a genuine love seeker and given them their life savings.

This breach of security was on a much larger scale and targeted a dating app rather than an online dating site. And we’re not just talking one or two people – according to one recent report, 100,000 users on gay dating site Grindr not only had their dating profile hacked by one unscrupulous individual but also then had the indignity of the identity thief pretend to be them on the dating site.

This is the second such report of dating site hacking on a large scale this year. Grindr is specifically for gay gentlemen who can download the app on their Smartphone and be notified when another subscriber to the service is in the vicinity. A little bit like a booster to their inherent gaydar, if you like.

As well as any financial information the hacker may have had access to, the hacker was able to see all of their tagged ‘favourites’, update, delete and amend details of their dating profile and user photo, chat to other members pretending to be the registered member as well as seeing who’d been sending them what photos and actually impersonate their favourite and hold a conversation with them.

Needless to say, Grindr got to work on their security system as the amount of damaging information that was accessed – well, in the wrong hands personal chats, photos and adventures into the land of promiscuity could be lethal if it belonged to an authoritative figure. A mandatory update was issued, after the Sydney Morning Herald interviewed an anonymous dating site security expert who revealed that Grindr – and its lesbian/heterosexual offshoot Blendr – had hardly any security whatsoever. As such, it was no surprise that such large scale penetration was easy on the gay site. Ooh, err.

The other dating site to recently have had its security breached was Tuff Scruff, a site ran by the fairer sex on Tumblr (has evryone forgotten their e’s?) who like a bit of fluff around their men’s chins. After being hacked, the ladies logged on to find that photos of their facially-haired fancy-men had been switched for women revealing bearded clams, rather than the bearded faces of their dreamboats.

No security system is 100% safe. If you want to keep your dating life online completely separate from the real you, we have some excellent advice coming next from around the world of online security that you can impart on your dating site, or for any other online persona you wish to create.

Okay – found a dating site. What next?

One of the key deciding factors about the dating site you choose is if it’s a facility that allows you to do a local search. Most, even the free dating sites (a word about them later), have give you the option to locate a prospective partner within easy reach. It’s no use falling in love with someone from Adelaide in time for Valentine’s Day. Even if you can stretch to the cost of the flight, getting the time off work and even booking a flight so late in the day may be an issue to get you there in a week.

In all honesty, we would not advise jetting off half way around the world to meet someone you’ve only known for a few days chatting on a dating site anyway, purely because of the risk factor involved and the danger you may be unwittingly putting yourself in. You will soon learn, either by using your dating site directly, from the forums or via the bounteous knowledge we have posted on dating.org.uk under the tag online dating security that not everyone you meet online is in fact who they say they are

How serious are you about dating online?

There are, in essence, three main types of dating site, with regard to cost. There are free dating sites, mainstream paid dating sites and high-end dating sites, whereby as long as you have the money, your dating site will do everything apart from actually go on the date for you.

We’ll conclude today’s articles with a look at free online dating, it’s positives and negatives and then take a peep at the two types that you’d need to shell out for tomorrow: Should I pay to find my love online?

Free dating sites are great for getting to know the ropes, availing yourself of the types of facilities that you’d expect to find to help you find your Valentine’s Day date online for zero cost. If you’re only looking for a partner for a special occasion and you’re not a paid member of any other dating facility (or the one you’re on is not cutting the mustard), then these sites can be your get-out-of-jail-free card.

Many paid dating sites also have a free section, where you can check out the calibre of their membership (you may only get access to one photo at this level, though), perhaps who’s in your area and, quite obviously, they’ll show you just enough of their website to entice you to put your hand in your pocket and pay for the upgraded facility.

The pitfalls of free dating up next: The common downsides of the free online dating service

Economy fears brushed aside for loaded daters

It’s not only the monotony of Christmas spent with the family that’s driving singles to the dating sites, as their volumes reach record figures, week on week.

A fear of being alone as the recession strikes is driving singles with more money than sense to high-end dating sites in the metropolis that is New York.

Being able to seek out and afford that latest little number from Gucci appears to be no qualification for being able (or willing) to find love for those who can afford to sign up to the growing number of dating sites willing to relieve you of $1,000 per month or more for the privilege of searching their database for your suitable match.

In a recent interview with Crains New York, one such proprietor has reported that they have doubled their client base in the last two years and how, during that time, the number of exclusive dating sites of this nature has trebled.

Based in Manhattan (where else), Lisa Clampett’s ‘VIP Life’ is a high-profile dating agency which serves the male population only in their quest for the perfect partner.

In order to preserve that personal touch that is demanded by a $12,000/per annum membership fee, she restricts the client base to a maximum of 30 persons at any given time. Okay, it probably doesn’t pan out this way but, that’s one man per day in an average month, each paying $1,000/month for that one day’s service…
…money for old rope, you may think, if you’re a seasoned dating site user.

But this is where the similarities between your mainstream dating site and this level of service end.

According to the report in Crains, for that monthly dating membership fee, dating sites and agencies of this nature do not only match you based on an algorithm they’ve created against a set of pre-defined search terms, oh no.

These niche sites serve businessmen who have not come by the money to afford this service by clocking on 9-5 but rather have thrown themselves into their respective industries and dating has sort of passed them by.

As such, the relationship experts who work for these sort of dating sites can be expected to teach their clients across a whole range of aspects relating to courting a new beau.

This can mean that the dating site professional chooses the date for the member, picks the setting and the time, grooms the gentleman in the art of wooing, picks out suitable attire to attend the liaison and may even have to educate on keeping a conversation going at the dinner table and provide instruction (theoretical, one assumes) on the elements of what may come to pass in the bedroom if the date is an absolute success.

Needless to say, usual rules of first dates do not apply when there’s this much cash and this level of vetting of clientele involved, a marked difference from some of the more suspect advances one receives on free dating sites.

I wonder if they’d give me a discount for a one-month membership if I gave them a glowing review…?

Don’t let the millions of dating sites grind you down

For those of you new to the world of online dating, the plethora of dating sites spattered across the internet can be daunting. Once your profile is keyed in, and that can be a task in its own rite, there are so many other new facilities to get used to.

What you absolutely do not want, after spending possibly hours tweeking your profile so that it is the real you people can approach, is then having to wait for hours for your first bite.

One of the absolute key elements about making your online dating experience work for you is deciding what you want to get out of the experience.

Are you just testing the water?

Dating sites can be as fun or as serious as you want them to be. How you use them will be as much as an influence on the results you get back as the effort you’re putting in.

For example, you may only want to use the faclity as a contact website. If you’ve been in a long-term relationship or are recently divorced, the odds are you will not have dated for a length of time. Boy, how things have changed.

You may only want to use your service to pick up hints and tips that you can take into the realm of offline dating. This, of course, is fine, but you may exclude a sector of the dating site membership if you actually write that you’re only using their community to do a bit of flirting. Keep that bit to yourself to encourage the most overall response.

Check out the wild side of online dating

When you’re in a long term relationship, the blinkers are off; many couples experiment with sex as a way to bring their closeness together and find out about themselves in a way they never thought imaginable.

If you’ve missed out on letting your hair down there are many adult dating sites that can accomodate your every need – and some you never thought possible, or even legal.

It is important, however, to wait until you’ve built someone’s trust before mentionging this type of activity or alternatively join a site that expressly allows you to divulge that nature of information.

Your profile for the world to see

Now, this is gonna be hard to believe, but one or both halves of a married couple have been known to use dating sites.

Yep, it’s true – the sacred vow of marriage can be no barrier to accessing singles looking for a fling, or even other married folk looking for a little extra-curricular dating activity.

If you do not want your significant other to find out about your website activity, choose a dating site that keeps your information private and does not display your personal information for the world to see. This may mean you have to join a paid site as free dating sites use any means possible to increase their revenue, which may mean selling your information.

The downside to joining a paid dating site facility, especially if you have a joint banking account, is that your monthly subscription will show on the statement – be sure to create an account elsewhere to ensure you don’t get caught out this way.

In order to get the best results from your dating site, be true to your own personality from the outset. If you are looking for something a little out of the ordinary, but are wary of adult dating sites, build up trust with other members before you either get a reputation on the site or the site admin choose to suspend your membership if enough of the dating community complain.

Dating tips by the people for the people

There are very few diamonds in the rough in the world of online dating news. As alluded to in previous posts, there is too much black-hat ‘keyword stuffing‘ from poor-quality dating websites looking to fill their pages with ‘news’ illegible to anyone but the Google spiders; and then there are the global dating sites whose content is specific to their own product and does little to represent the online dating community outside of their own domain.

Lovestruck.com, however, is neither, providing quality, readable content that, as well as being insightful leaves you feeling better informed when you leave the site than before you first logged on.

In a recent post, they produced a guide for both sexes to literally hold your hand through the dating process, including tips for the build-up, the during and the after (to a point). So as not to totally plagiarise the writer’s content, the next few articles will compile a his, a hers, and a mutual ‘how-to-date-guide’ to ensure that, when you do meet that special someone on your dating site, you won’t let yourself down when your wooing hits the tarmac of reality.

So, without further ado, let’s take a look at what the guys and girls recommend in light of their own extensive (by their own admission) experience from the world of UK dating.

why should there be two sets of rules?

It is harder for gents to get dates, it has to be said. Yes, they have a reputation of actually being less fussy, but the flip side is that women are, by their very nature, more choosy. There are plenty of arguments as to why this should be, but the favourite answer seems to be one akin to the theory of natural selection. The female of the species, as well as being more deadly than the male, has to carry the offspring produced by any physical liaison.

According to those who know about such things, there exists a switch that dates back to Neanderthal times buried deep within the female psyche, nearly as hard to find as that infamous place first defined by Regnier de Graaf way back in 1672.  This mystical node maintains a standard below which women will not drop when appraising any potential father to their future children. Much like the G-Spot, this switch can, and often is, flipped on or off by the application of Vodka and/or Stella Artois.

However, that is not a subject for the first date – that will come much, much later (no, don’t say it, don’t even think it!). First, we’ll see how we can guide the ‘him’ through that first date, flicking all the right switches to warrant a second encounter…