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How to Avoid The Perils of Cyber-Dating


In a recent interview with Erin Darling from, we talked about The Perils of Cyber-Dating, the advantages of being able to screen your dates, and how to sift through your overflowing Inbox while searching for love on your favorite online dating site.

Written by Erin Darling

Monday, October 12, 2009 Being a 21st century girl certainly has its advantages and being able to screen your dates is one of them. Although signing up for a website that allows you to sift through a pool of pre-screened men seems almost too good to be true, there are drawbacks and downsides to meeting your next boyfriend through an online dating site. We’ve all seen the commercials featuring smiling, seemingly perfect couples, holding hands and walking barefoot along a private beach telling the camera that they wouldn’t have found true love if it weren’t for (insert dating site name here).com. But is finding Mr. Right online as easy as it seems? Not according to dating coach and cyber-dating expert, Julie Spira who penned the book, The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online. Spira believes that although finding a match on is definitely possible, it’s more than likely you’ll hit a few roadblocks. Spira sat down with The Smart & Pretty to share her wisdom and advice for finding love online.

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Peril of the Week – In Second Place


I recently heard the story from a man who treated his cyber-date to a lovely evening of fine wining and dining. He thought the evening was going well, but he couldn’t help but notice that his date was taking notes on the napkin during the entire evening.

Finally, she slid the note over to him, face down. He wondered if it was a “love note” or if she was writing some poetry to express her desire for him.

When he turned the paper napkin over, the man was stunned. It was a break up note that said, “I can’t date you anymore.?There is another man that I must find out about that I met a week ago. If there isn’t anything there, or if he doesn’t like me, then maybe we can get back together.” ?

He wasn’t interesting in being the sloppy second and went home laughing about the experience.

Ah, those who think the grass is greener may come up empty handed. Time will tell. But it is she who won’t get the second chance.

The Peril of the Week was contributed by VIP Social Events. For consideration for The Peril of the Week, please send your submissions to

For more Peril of the Week stories, click here

Book Review – SHE KNOWS


Book Review: The Perils of Cyber-Dating


by Margeaux Baulch Klein

Author Julie Spira encounters every breed of man in her new tell-all memoir, The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online.

Online since 1994, Spira is a self-proclaimed internet dating pioneer, having gone on over 250 blind dates, receiving several marriage proposals and then marrying (and later divorcing) someone she met online. Spira has turned her dating horror stories and romantic journeys, both the good, bad, and, quite literally, ugly into a witty memoir that every woman whose ever dipped her toe into the online dating pool will appreciate.

For starters, Spira compares a woman’s online dating profile to a real estate listing:

“In real estate, the first week that your house in on the market is important because if it’s priced correctly, professionally staged, and marketed well, it generates a lot of leads. Hopefully a qualified buyer will show.”

She also offers a “Top Ten Rules of Cyber Dating Netiquette” in Chapter 9 that is one of the best parts of the book. Here are a few tips she endorses:


Don’t knock-off more than 5-10 pounds off of your weight or 5-10 years off of your age on your dating profile. “It’s always best to be authentic and tell the truth,” she says, “but anything more than that is just too noticeable. You will find yourself meeting someone who won’t be so happy to see you.” In her list of common profile definitions, she also notes that if a man lists his age as 40-something, it means that he’s a 50-something who wants a 30-year-old female.


Don’t Google a potential date before having the opportunity to see if there is a connection.?Partly due to her own embarrassment over a New York Times wedding announcement that she wishes didn’t come up when people searched for her, Spira believes that it’s too easy to misconstrue or jump to an incorrect conclusion about a piece of information without knowing its context.


A man should not suggest sharing an appetizer on the first date, nor should he meet his date for coffee without the intention of ordering a beverage.” Spira hates cheap men.


Don’t discuss ex-boyfriends, ex-husbands, or anything to do with body parts, extramarital affairs, and long lost loves on a first date. Spira declares that information should be rationed over the course of getting to know someone.


Don’t cyber-fight. Although it’s tempting to hit ‘send’ and launch an angry missive into cyberspace, Spira recommends sleeping on any upset or hurt feelings. “When in doubt, pick up the phone to get that real connection,” she says.

Even after two failed marriages and four engagements, Spira believes in remaining a “hopeful romantic.” She is still in search of her happily ever after.

For more info on The Perils of Cyber-Dating, visit

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Are You a Cyber Dating Cougar?

cougarwomanTonight, the new television series Cougar Town, starring Courtney Cox will premiere on ABC Television. As I drove down Sunset Boulevard the past few weeks, I noticed billboards and signs at bus stops in a town that is getting ready for the official arrival of the cougars.

With all of the cougar mania, the online dating industry is also jumping on the bandwagon.There’s even an Internet dating site,?, where they claim the web’s hottest cougars hang out. It’s simple with the age search functionality on most Internet dating sites for one to specifically choose their cougar mate, assuming that one is accurately describing their age in their profile.

Cougar dating has been around for a long time. It is now chic and acceptable for an older woman to be seen out in public and in a romantic relationship with a much younger man.?Think about Ashton and Demi, Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins, Juliet Mills and Maxwell Caulfield. There’s even a ?California Cougar Convention scheduled for November 6th in Beverly Hills where the first-ever Miss California Cougar will be crowned. Are you ready to sign up?

On a personal note, just about a week ago, a gentleman asked me out on a date who was 25-years younger than me. I was a bit flattered as well as stunned. I asked him if he liked Cougars. After all, it’s the buzz word in the dating world now. He replied that he was accustomed to dating older women, he said. As he is still in his 20s, I had to wonder why? I politely told him I preferred dating men closer in age to myself and wished him the best.

So, I’ll ask you, “Are you a Cyber dating Cougar?” If so, I’d like to hear your stories.

Julie Spira is the author of The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online. Visit her at

Cyber Love Story of the Week – Jayden and Sigmund

jaydenandsigmund1In August of 2006, Jayden was sitting in her home in Florida and was browsing in the live chat room of the online dating site,

She noticed a very handsome man named Sigmund, who resided in the island of Curacao. They started communicating, but she didn’t want anyone to know that she was spending time in a chat room.

When Jayden needed medical care, she flew to Curacao and Sigmund was by her side the entire time.

Three years later, the couple got married in the Bahamas.

Although this is a long-distance relationship where Jayden resides in Florida and Sigmund still lives in Curacao, they want the world to know that you shouldn’t let distance get in the way of love.

Congratulations to Jayden and Sigmund, our Cyber Love Story of the Week who met on

For consideration in the Cyber Love Story of the Week, send your stories to

Read More Cyber Love Stories

Ask the Cyber-Dating Expert Radio Show


Are you ready to find out which online dating sites are the most popular?

Join Cyber-Dating Expert, Julie Spira on Saturday, September 19, 2009 as she welcomes her guest, David Evans to Ask the Cyber-Dating Expert Radio Show.

David is the editor of and has been covering the online dating industry since 2002.?

We will be discussing the latest in Internet dating trends and you will learn about some of the newest online dating sites to hit the scene. ?

Call in at 2pm, Eastern time/11am Pacific at 646-929-0012.

Listen to Cyber-dating Expert on Blog Talk Radio

Cyber Wedding Album – Nancy and Ron

Nancy and Ron – Hartford, CT
Met in June, 2003
Engaged in August, 2003
Married on New Year’s Eve, 2003
Met on

Here’s a very romantic online dating story that I have to share. Nancy and Ron met on Nancy was a single mother of two, and Ron had two children of his own.

After an enjoyable first date, Ron asked Nancy what her favorite flowers and flavors were. He arrived on their second date with a bouquet of flowers that included every flower ?she mentioned during their phone call. He also stopped at Godiva Chocolatier and selected one chocolate for each of her favorite flavors, along with a bottle of champagne.

By the end of their second date, the two knew without a doubt that they would get married someday.

Ron proposed to Nancy while on a beach walk with her and her two daughters. He asked Nancy’s children first if he could have permission to marry their mother. According to Nancy, she felt that Ron knew the fabric of her life like a quilt. They have been happily married for six years.

Congratulations to Nancy and Ron, our Cyber Wedding Album couple from your friends at

Peril of the Week – The Stolen Car

carkeysThey say you dream of a man who will find the key to your heart. As a hopeful romantic, I like this optimistic way of thinking.

But in this true-life police story, a man actually went on a date with a woman, and when it was time to pay for the meal, he told her he left his wallet in her car. Now, I don’t recommend going in the same car with someone on a first date. It’s just not a safe thing to do.

When asked for her keys to retrieve the wallet, not only did he stiff her for the meal, he took off and actually stole her car as well. The incident was reported to the police and the 23-year old Michigan man was charged with a five year felony.

In a previous Peril of the Week – Where’s my Car? a woman also lost her car on her first date. In that story, it wasn’t a police crime.?

The moral of the story, drive alone and hang on to your keys!

Do you have a Peril to share? Send your entries to SUBMIT STORY at

Read More Peril of the Week Stories

Cyber-Dating Expert Weekly Flirt: September 9 – 15, 2009

Book Review – Date Daily

Book Review, The Perils of Cyber Dating
By Julie Spira
By DateDaily Staff

Online dating has become the norm for many people seeking a soul mate. With full-time jobs and the like, it’s hard to devote every weekend to finding the perfect person. That’s why Julie Spira wrote The Perils of Cyber Dating.

The book is so interesting you’ll probably read The Perils of Cyber-Dating in one day. From the second I picked it up, I knew it was going to be an interesting read. I was sucked in right away. Julie Spira has a way of describing her experiences that makes the reader feel like they were there with her, experiencing her feelings. You’ll laugh at times and open your mouth in amazement at others.

Although Julie Spira offers up a real-life guide to help others who want to get their feet wet in online dating via stories that might send others running in the other direction, her objective is to help readers hone their skills on the World Wide Web and come out unscathed.

Having experienced over 250 dates in almost 15 years, some marriage proposals and a divorce to boot, Julie Spira takes readers on her journey, which started in the mid ?90s.

From the “Investment Banker” to the “Plastic Surgeon,” Julie Spira allows us to be that fly on the wall as she vividly describes her dating experiences. But that
is not all Julie Spira does; she also provides us with her “Rules of Netiquette.”

Some of the Netiquette rules include:

The Google Rule – Don’t tell your date that you did a Google search before the first date.  She was Googled by a date and learned more about herself than she even knew.

The Body Parts Rule – Don’t discuss body parts. One date went into great detail about a colonoscopy that he had while they were eating lunch.

So if you’re a single looking for love online without much success, use Julie Spira’s The Perils of Cyber Dating as your guide to get over some of your worst dates and to look at online dating as an adventure, rather than yet another chore.

Highly recommended for both men and women.

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