Sometimes the words will just fizzle out but occasionally things will sizzle; their jokes, stories and attitudes will capture your attention and ultimately your heart.
Whether your online communication is formal or flirty it should always be safe. Read on for important information and tips about safe, successful online dating communication.
Online Chat Quick Tips
ONLINE DATING SECRET AGENTS
It is important to guard your identity and personal details at all times when using online dating services. While you don’t have to wear a fake moustache and dark glasses every time you sit down at the computer, you should keep your full name, address, phone number and specific details of your place of work confidential if you have just met online. If you’ve told an online dating acquaintance that your name is Bob and you live in Example City, why should they need your last name, suburb or street address if you’ve just met online? They don’t. Equally important is keeping your bank and credit card details safe. NEVER give your financial details to someone you’ve met through an online dating service and NEVER send any money to anyone that you met online.
DON'T CALL ME BABY
If someone gives you their personal email address, phone number or snail mail address you are not obliged to use it. You are certainly not obliged to reciprocate. Take a direct approach by saying “Thanks for giving me your details but I’d rather communicate through the online dating service”.
Communicating with people from other towns, states and countries will introduce you to an exciting new world but one in which things can easily be lost in translation. It’s important to be aware of cultural, religious and political differences and sensitivities. Be cautious when discussing things you’ve heard about someone else’s country or national character; stereotypes often cause offense and even distress.
Politics is basically a no-go zone of online dating conversation and discussing anything of a sexual nature will put you on thin ice. Make sure you consider different attitudes to sexual relations and know where your online dating partner stands before anything kinky leaves your outbox.
Don’t feel pressured into topics of discussion that you’re not comfortable with. For example, if an online dating acquaintance shares all the gory details of past relationships you are not obliged to do the same. In face to face conversation it is easy to pick up someone’s discomfort but online dating communication is devoid of physical and aural clues. Chances are your online dating buddy has no idea that talking about your ex girlfriend makes you uncomfortable, so just tell them by saying, “Thanks for sharing your stories but I’m not comfortable discussing that topic just yet”.
BUILD A PRETTY PICTURE
Ask for a series of photos from different times in your online dating partner’s life. This will build a better understanding of who they are while ensuring that the photo posted with their profile is actually them. Be highly suspicious of someone who claims to have only one photo or only has photos that look like professional shots. Who doesn’t have photos of birthdays, graduations, school classes, parties etc? Scammers don’t. If your online dating partner only has modeling photos and glamour shots then they may have downloaded them from the internet. If nothing else, having a range of older photos will give you the chance to laugh at your online dating partner’s bad 80s haircut or the goofy smile they had as a kid.
GETTING THEIR STORY STRAIGHT
Funny, you thought their uncle was named Bob not Joe. Are you noticing inconsistencies in their stories? Are things not adding up? It’s an unfortunate fact of reality that some people use the internet to create new identities, often for unsavory reasons. If your online dating partner is getting themselves stuck in a web of lies be extremely cautious.
LOVE AT FIRST LINK? UNLIKELY
Be suspicious of online dating acquaintances who profess their love for you after just a few emails or instant messages; love is generally an acquired feeling. Claiming instant, undying love for someone is a ploy often used by scammers who prey on the emotions of online dating users.
DON'T LET LOVE ROB YOU BLIND
Never send money to someone you’ve met through an online dating service. A quick internet search of online dating scams will turn up thousands of stories ranging from the loss of a few hundred dollars to the endangerment of lives. A search will also show the multitude of ways in which scammers extract money from innocent, unsuspecting online dating users. Scammers claim to have sick grandmothers, need money to pay household bills, say they’re stranded in a foreign country, need to pay for visas or travel expenses to visit you…the list goes on an on. Do not send money, bank or credit card details and report anyone who requests them to the online dating service provider.
REPORT BAD BEHAVIOR
Reputable online dating services will have a way for members to report inappropriate, offensive or suspicious behavior. If you encounter any of the following do not hesitate to report the offender:
- Offensive behavior such as racism
- Unwelcome sexual advances
- Spam or solicitation (someone trying to sell something)
- Fraudulent profile or photo
- Finding that an online dating member is underage
- Requests for money or material goods
- Anything that makes you uncomfortable or suspicious