Sex & the Campus

Sex and the Campus: Value in Online Dating

In our technological age, it is no wonder that dating has jumped from across the table onto our computer screen. The power of technology continues to expand, allowing fewer limitations as time progresses. We can order pizza, shop, bank, tour museums, even stalk someone online. Thus, it is only natural that we have transitioned other parts of life into a virtual setting.

There are countless ways to meet someone online. Our conservations are no longer static. We can engage with web cams, chat rooms, even Skype. However, have we gone too far? Are we losing something when we replace touch with sight and nearness with convenience?

The advantages of meeting someone through an online dating site is you can be confident the people you meet are interested in pursuing a relationship, instead of having a short-term fling. Not only is there is an assurance that they are serious in meeting someone they are compatible with, but you’re also able to pre-screen who you meet. It’s as if you skipped ahead to the third date, you see what their interests and traits are. In fact, some dating facilities match you upon similarities they find, minimizing the amount of searching you have to do. However, some online dating sites use “ghost” profiles to lure potential members in; a controversial tactic. Another benefit of dating online is matches tend to be based on how well personalities mesh instead of being based solely on physical attraction. You can be fairly certain the profile information you read is as accurate as the conversation you would have on an actual first date, when everyone is on their best behavior and skeletons have yet to be revealed.

Not to mention there is something to be said about having convenience when it comes to dating. Finding someone you are truly compatible with is no easy feat, nor are the awkward first dates you have to endure. Someone who barely has time to pick up their dry cleaning may find it helpful to be able to date online in the comfort of their own home. Although, there is some risk you will base decisions and trust off of false information. However, there are ways to be proactive by verifying before investing completely in the relationship. Besides the risk of uncertainty, where do other pitfalls lie? Some may steer away from online dating sites to avoid potential fraud or having to pay a membership fee. There is also the temptation to avoid physically meeting, due to the potential danger of shattering the allusion.

There is an unspoken value in sharing a moment with someone who is in the same room. There is an implied trust when you are within reach to that special someone. Anyone in a long-distance relationship will agree: No matter the convenience or time spent in a virtual world, there is no compensation to touch or closeness. The question is not how you meet, but how you spend your time together. If you don’t learn how to move past the computer screen into a real setting, you will lose something worth having that no virus or computer crash can ruin.

 

By Jill Mahler

Jill Mahler is a former Editor-in-Chief of the Commuter.

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