The Top Ten Rules of Netiquette for Online Dating
1. The Google Rule ? Googling your date. We all do it. It’s just too easy to find out the juicy details of the person you have on your date card. If you do decide to do a search, please don?t tell your date he or she has been ?Googled? on your first date. ?Can you believe some actually brag about the fact that they did a background check on you before your first date? If you choose to ?Google? a date, it?s best to keep it to yourself.
2. The Cut-Off Rule ? Authenticity Matters. I urge singles to be honest about their age and weight in their profiles. However, we all know that some people want to fit into a search and age is one of the biggest misrepresentations in a profile. If you feel compelled to stretch it, please don?t subtract more than 5-pounds off your actual weight or 5-years from your age on your online dating profile. I can?t force the universe to tell their correct age online, so If you do choose to subscribe to this cut-off rule, please come clean about your age either on the phone, in your profile, or on your first date– especially if you want to make it to a second date.
3. The Food and Beverage Rule – A man should not suggest sharing an appetizer on a first date, nor should he meet his date for coffee without the intention of ordering a beverage. I once went on a date where the man brought his own bottle of water to the coffee bar. Another date made a point of asking what my favorite cuisine was so he could select the perfect restaurant for dinner. He refused to order food after we sat down at the table. Neither of them made it to a second date.
4. The Valet Parking Rule – It?s just gentlemanly and chivalrous to offer to pay for the woman?s valet parking on a first date, especially if you like her and want to get to the second date. Is it worth standing on ceremony and not paying $5 for parking? It?s typically much less than the cost of the next cosmopolitan. You’ll get extra bonus points if you ask the valet parking attendant to bring her car first. Even if you aren?t interested in a second date, she will remember this kind gesture and
may have a friend to introduce you to. Make a great first impression.
5. The Ex Rule – Never discuss an ex-boyfriend, ex-girlfriend, or ex-spouse on a first date. If your date insists on talking about spousal support or how happy they are that their payments are about to end, change the subject, or run. He’s just not over her or him.
6. The Body Parts Rule – Don?t discuss cosmetic surgery, vasectomies, or anything that personal in nature regarding your body parts. Yes, this does come up on first dates, and it should not.
7. The To Go Bag Rule – Don?t EVER, take your food from a first date to go in a doggy bag. And even more importantly, don?t request your date?s food to go in your doggy bag as well. The man who asked for the remains of his pizza crust to go along with the scraps of my salad didn’t make a good impression.
8. The Send Button Rule – When in doubt, don?t push the send button in an angry or emotional email that you?ve written when you are upset at your date. Sleep on it or send it to yourself instead. You can?t take it back. Your date’s revenge could be in forwarding your email all over the Internet. If it gets indexed by Google, you’ll have a hard time finding another date.
9. The Marriage Proposal Rule – Don?t give or accept a marriage proposal online or in a text message. If you think this hasn?t been done this before, give me a call! Falling in love from your keyboard or iPhone isn’t really love. It’s a false fantasy that you are in a relationship.
10. The Break Up Rule ? Never break up with a significant other in an email or a text message. It?s just common courtesy to have a conversation and preferably in person. Do you really want to go down in history as the one who frequently dumps their dates in an email or text? Sure, celebrities are ending relationships in text messages these days. But is it right?
Excerpts from the bestselling book, The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online by Julie Spira
?2008 Julie Spira ? Cyber Dating Expert, LLC All Rights Reserved