Online dating etiquette

 

With dating comes an unwritten code of behaviour, which is more commonly known as ‘Dating Etiquette’. The internet may have revolutionised age-old rituals of courtship and created an entirely new etiquette for online dating, but just because you’re sat behind a computer, doesn’t mean you should abandon them altogether. Dating etiquette still applies online so in order to succeed, here are some basic principles that must still be adhered to.

What not to say in a first message

I can’t tell you how many times I have seen guys (and it's always guys) crash and burn with an inane ‘wanna chat’ first message - just those two words, nothing else. The obvious response to this message is ‘no’, because quite frankly, if ‘wanna chat’ is the best you can come up with in an attempt to stand out from the competition then you're going to get nowhere fast.

Your first message, your first point of contact with someone you like the look of on the site, needs to stand out and catch their eye. So refrain from the likes of ‘hi beautiful’, ‘you look nice’ and ‘let’s chat’, and put together a thought-out message that won’t end up in the trash. Something that says ‘Hey, I took the time to read your profile, we seem to have things in common and I’d like to know more about you, if you like my profile too’ (not literally though!).

How to say ‘thanks, but no thanks’

If you were approached in a bar by someone you weren’t that interested in you wouldn’t just ignore them, would you? Most likely you would think of a polite way to let them down, for example ‘sorry I’m not looking for a relationship’ or ‘I’ve already got a boyfriend/girlfriend’ sort of thing. Unfortunately, you can’t get away with these excuses online because, well, let’s face it, you are looking for a relationship and that’s entirely why you’ve come here.

So if someone contacts you and they aren't your type or don’t tick your boxes, don’t just ignore them. Respond to them in a way you would like to be responded to. Simply be polite and let them down gently by saying ‘sorry, you’re out of my age range’ or ‘I’m looking for someone who lives a little closer’ and then wish them well in their continued search.

How to cope if you get the ‘thanks, but no thanks’ message

From time to time you may receive the odd ‘thanks, but no thanks’. Now, I’ve seen people respond badly to this kind of message almost in a child-like ‘yeah well I didn’t fancy you anyway’ manner. Please, whatever you do, do not do this. It will only make you look silly.

Rejection is never easy for anyone to take, but it does happen to everyone at some point in their lives. Be grateful that the person has taken the time to actually respond and do the only thing you can do in this situation. Scrape your ego up off the floor, dust yourself down, and continue in your search. After all, you know how the saying goes, there’re plenty more fish...

When should you remove your profile

So you’ve met someone online who you’re interested in, things are going well and you’re not using the site anymore. The question is, do you delete your profile or is it too soon? It can be hard to know what to do in these early stages as you neither want to tempt fate by removing your profile or worse, come across as too eager, nor do you want to keep your profile on the site all the while ignoring messages that you are receiving. The best thing to do here it is to talk it through with your new partner. As you both met online you will both be in the same predicament, so talk it through together and make a joint decision. Most sites will usually let you put your profile on hold or let you delete it and re-activate it should you need it again in the future.

So next time you’re online remember these basics principles, because they could be the difference between fluffing things up and finding something special.

Happy Dating

Independent Dating





News
The surrealist comedian at the Q Awards in 2010
people
News
Russell Brand arriving for the book launch in East London
peopleRussell Brand cancels his book launch debate due to concerns about the make-up of the panel
Sport
Christiano Ronaldo enjoys his opening goal
champions leagueLiverpool 0 Real Madrid 3: Ronaldo and Benzema run Reds ragged to avenge thrashing from their last visit to Anfield
Arts and Entertainment
Awesome foursome: Sam Smith shows off his awards
music22-year-old confirms he is 2014’s breakout British music success
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebooksA superb mix of recipes serving up the freshest of local produce in a delicious range of styles
Life and Style
ebooksFrom the lifespan of a slug to the distance to the Sun: answers to 500 questions from readers
Life and Style
Six of the 76 Goats' cheese samples contained a significant amount of sheep's cheese
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Contestants during this summer's Celebrity Big Brother grand finale
tvBroadcaster attempts to change its image following sale to American media group
Extras
indybest
News
Wilko Johnson is currently on his farewell tour
people
Arts and Entertainment
Sarah Dales attempts to sell British Breeze in the luxury scent task
tvReview: 'Apprentice' candidate on the verge of tears as they were ejected from the boardroom
News
Call me Superman: one of many unusual names chosen by Chinese students
newsChinese state TV offers advice for citizens picking a Western moniker
Voices
New look: Zellweger at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday
voicesRenée Zellweger's real crime has been to age in an industry that prizes women's youth over humanity, says Amanda Hess
Arts and Entertainment
Julianne Moore and Ellen Page are starring together in civil rights drama Freeheld
film
Voices
'Irritatingly Disneyfied': fashion vlogger Zoella
voicesVicky Chandler: Zoella shows us that feminism can come in all forms
Life and Style
health
Arts and Entertainment
Pink Floyd on stage at Live 8 in 2005. From left to right: David Gilmour, Roger Waters, Nick Mason and Rick Wright
music New album The Endless River set to overtake boyband for most pre-ordered of all-time
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker
Renée Zellweger's real crime has been to age in an industry that prizes women's youth over humanity

'Renée Zellweger's real crime was to age'

The actress's altered appearance raised eyebrows at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday
The 10 best smartphone accessories

Make the most of your mobile: 10 best smartphone accessories

Try these add-ons for everything from secret charging to making sure you never lose your keys again
West Indies tour of India: Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Decision to pull out of India tour leaves the WICB fighting for its existence with an off-field storm building
Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals

'You need me, I don’t need you'

Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals
How to Get Away with Murder: Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama

How to Get Away with Murder

Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama
A cup of tea is every worker's right

Hard to swallow

Three hospitals in Leicester have banned their staff from drinking tea and coffee in public areas. Christopher Hirst explains why he thinks that a cuppa is every worker's right
Which animals are nearly extinct?

Which animals are nearly extinct?

Conservationists in Kenya are in mourning after the death of a white northern rhino, which has left the species with a single male. These are the other species on the brink