Is online dating worthwhile? What’s up with speed dating? People care a lot about how they meet new people. As our society pushes speed, efficiency, and isolation, it gets harder for singles to find each other and spark a conversation. Online dating and speed dating both overcome those obstacles. But which is better, and which is the right choice for you? We’ll review some of the best parts of both practice, consider the hazards, and then see how they measure up. Which do you think is better?
Perks of Online Dating
Probably the biggest advantage of online dating is access. Want to go on a date tonight? Just open the app and start checking out your options. You’re ability to make new connections travels with you wherever you go, so you can set up a date while you’re on vacation as easily as you can at home.
Since most adults in the US have smart phones, you enjoy a huge range of potential dates. You get millions of options. Anyone on the app who’s willing to talk represents a potential partner. They may live on the other side of the country, but if you’re both game for a long-distance relationship, there’s nothing stopping you. You can look local, too. If you want to stay in a particular clump of suburbs to ensure you don’t have a dating commute, online dating gives you access to nearby matches. Most services work like remote ordering. You decide what you’re looking for and you get to see the available options. Of course, those options have to choose, you, too. It’s not exactly the same as ordering off a menu. The orange chicken and eggroll combo can’t say no.
Drawbacks of Online Dating
The Internet allows many people to live secret lives. Often, these lives take on fantastic characteristics that may or may not match up with real life. While there is a time and place for fantasy – through Sims or IMVU – the prep point for physical dating isn’t it. Unfortunately, plenty of people still use fake or distorted pictures and outright lies to convince other singles to go on a date. This means wasted time for the person who thought they would be dating the fantasy persona. It also creates a seriously risky situation.
Women know all about dating violence, and plenty men do, too. Meeting a stranger alone is dangerous. And make no mistake; anyone you meet online is a stranger, no matter how many social media messages you share. Lots of people have perfectly safe relationships through online dating, of course. It’s just a matter of planning, risk assessment, and luck.
There’s also a disproportionate amount of chaff you have to cut through to get to the wheat. Unsolicited erotic photos, demeaning ‘compliments,’ and other hazards of the online world plague users on a regular basis. These issues are so widespread they’re a common joke. Ask any girl who uses dating apps what she’ll do to the next guy to send her a rude photo and she’ll have a ready answer.
Perks of Speed Dating
One of the best aspects of speed dating is how quickly you get to meet new people. Instead of getting to know a single individual over the weekend, you meet an entire array of interested partners. Unlike online dating, these partners can’t lie about their face, either. They’re very real. You see their real faces, hear their real voices, and engage in real conversation. Although people can still lie about things like work and hobbies, it isn’t as easy to deceive someone when they’re looking you straight in the eye.
Speed dating is also very safe. Since an organizer is on hand to actually run the event, you always have someone to turn to if things go sour. Someone getting too clingy? Inform the organizer. Recognize an ex who threatened you? The organizer can help. Often, the best solutions are simple, and they’ll just reorganize a few points to prevent further contact. Organizers often come with security, too. It’s important for the organizer that the event goes well. An incident might chase off clients, after all. They don’t want anyone to feel uncomfortable, and they don’t tolerate any kind of harassment.
Drawbacks of Speed Dating
Speed dating is a local event. Although some national events, like major conventions, may have speed dating events so like-minded individuals from around the world can meet, most events focus on a particular region, city, or town.
Your access to other singles is limited by turnout and availability. You can meet more in one night, but you can’t access millions of prospective dates at will.
Some people may also not find three to five minutes sufficient time to make a connection. Although speed dating does allow you to meet the same people multiple times at different events, and there’s usually a mingling time to enhance connections, many people aren’t comfortable expressing definite interest in a stranger after a few minutes.
The Better Choice
Is one option really better than the other? As far as safety goes – probably speed dating. As far as range goes – probably online dating. However, neither option replaces the unique advantages the other provides. Although people can lie more easily online, slow-moving flirts may like the pace of a drawn-out online conversation more than the rapid nature of speed dating. Others enjoy the pace and variety speed dating offers and know how to build on those connections. It all comes down to individual preference and personality.
Find what works best for you and pursue it. You may find you like both options, and that’s great! Maybe you can combine the two. Invite an online connection to a speed dating event. See how you do around other singles and whether the person really matches the profile without risking time and safety. Dating is personal, and you should enjoy finding the unique blend of experiences that bring out your flirty side.