Archive for February, 2013

Navigating the Valentine’s Day dating onslaught

bookworm valentineHappy almost Valentine’s Day, everyone. As usual, the TV, radio and interwebs are lousy with advertisements for flowers, jewelry, candy, cars, and yes, even that horrible chocolate wine. Just as clotted is my long-suffering inbox — with dozens of news releases about potential Valentine’s Day stories.

Interested in relationship advice from a Divorce Court judge? Click here for a link to Judge Lynn Toler’s website (and yes, there’s a book!). Curious as to whether numerology will help you find the love of your life? Yogi “Love by the Numbers” Akal is here to help. Wondering what’s new in digital dating? You might want to ask your phone, since mobile dating apps like Let’s Date are becoming more and more prevalent.

Also prevalent this time of year? Long think pieces about dating, particularly that sweet spot where technology and dating meet. One of the best researched stories I’ve seen on the topic in a while was published last week by the Wall Street Journal’s MarketWatch. 10 things dating sites won’t tell you: the risks and rewards of looking for love online, by Quentin Fottrell, delves into the rising costs of online dating; the trends (boomers and gay men are growing markets, apparently); the likelihood your potential matches are lying about something (more than 50%); the likelihood your potential matches are married (not so much, adulterers have their own “dating” sites now – hurray!); the ease with which photos can be doctored and tons more.

The author quotes a number of online dating movers and shakers in his piece, including Mark Brooks of the dating industry news site, Online Personals Watch, a great spot to learn what’s hot and what’s not in the world of digital romance. Also tapped, two authors who’ve recently published their own excellent essays (and books) on the topic of love in the time of algorithms. Writer Dan Slater’s piece in The Atlantic, A Million First Dates, asked whether online romance was threatening monogamy (for more on this, check out his book), launching a flurry of responses (yes! no! what, are you nuts?). Amy Webb, author of the new Data, a Love Story: How I Gamed Dating to Meet My Match, has also recently joined the dating advice fray with a story of “reverse-engineering” JDate in order to find her perfect match (click here to read a couple of excerpts on Huffington Post).

Will reading all of these essays help you connect with the person of your dreams? Probably not, although this link might give you some ideas as to how to find them. Reading up on the online dating beast will fill you in on a rapidly-changing industry, though, and perhaps give you something to talk about when you finally decide to share that bottle of chocolate wine. Have a great week, everybody.


What’s the story?

Meet Diane Mapes, your friendly neighborhood freelance writer. My beats include health (with an emphasis on cancer prevention, treatment and survivorship) and lifestyle and singles issues, but I also love writing about history, natural history, pop culture and TV/film. On this site, you'll find links to stories, praise for my writing (*blush*) and the odd bit of social commentary about the single life. Also here, a few shameless plugs for my books (hint: see links below). Have fun, glad you're here and hope to hear from you soon.

Oh! And if you're looking for my breast cancer blog, go to Double_Whammied

Check out my books!

How to Date in a Post-Dating World A dating manual for the modern, mangled single.

Single State of the Union
Single women speak out on life, love and the pursuit of happiness.

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