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The Rules of Online Dating Etiquette

As online dating sites become more and more popular, thousands of people are still hesitant as to what to expect and what exactly is expected of themselves in return. The general rules and etiquette of dating in the offline world are taught to us at a young age, but in today’s digital age, it has left many of us scratching our heads wondering what is acceptable, and what is not. Here are a few times to help you with proper online dating etiquette.

Online dating etiquette states that it is perfectly OK to be involved with more than one conversation at any given time, and that there is nothing wrong with writing emails back and forth with those that contact you. It is estimated that you will get responses from one in every four to five messages that you send out. Based on this, logic dictates that if you contact someone you are interested in knowing more about, you need not wait for them to contact you back before initiated contact with others. This same rule applies on the flipside – you may not feel inclined to write back to someone that has written to you.

It’s completely reasonable that you may ignore an email should you feel that the sender isn’t the right one for you. In real life, situations such as this are much more delicate to deal with and typically need an explanation as to why your not interested. In the online world, you are not breaking any online dating etiquette by simply not responding back. It may even be considered offensive to write someone and state that you do not wish to continue. However, it’s a very different issue when you actually break up via emails.

Let’s say, for instance, that you met someone online, went out on an actual date, but it didn’t go well. You may simply send them an email stating that you do want to continue. But, you would certainly go against the online dating etiquette should you meet online, go out a few times, and then send an email ending the relationship. After a few dates, you really do owe the person an explanation for choosing not to continue. Remember to do it nicely and as friendly as you can. Of course, you may keep writing to others even while you’re dating someone, as long as it has not turned serious.

It’s completely against all online dating etiquette to allow your profile to be up and visible if you are getting serious with someone. You may still continue with your online membership and keep your profile open, but take it off the active and looking list. Should you not follow this basic guideline, you could actually spoil your chances of meeting the love of your life.

Many of the online dating etiquette rules refer to the general correspondence rules. Dishonesty, profanity and rudeness are completely unacceptable in all situations. Unfortunately, it is difficult for the site owners to control behavior. Heavily moderated websites will offer you better protection from offensive encounters, but typically every single online dating website have a few shady characters that will pop up at some point.