Jewish World Review Sept. 29, 2003 / 3 Tishrei, 5764
Rejected by a dating site
The Wall Street Journal informed me recently that the online dating
scene is getting a little choosy. I'd assumed that dating sites welcomed
with anybody with a credit card and desperate longing. But one Nik
Bosyk, after taking the eHarmony site's compulsory 45 minute personality
test, was rejected. Rejected by the Internet? Mr. Bosyk wondered,
according to the WSJ, "Is that even possible?"
Not only possible, it is a grim reality. And eHarmony is not alone.
TheSquare.com demands that its members have a degree from "an elite
college," and you must provide transcripts to prove it. Match.com has a
personality test that "includes brutally frank assessments," even
listing the applicant's "quirks" that might leave you potentially dateless.
Friendster.com, the hipster's favorite dating site, won't let you in
without an invitation from a member. According to the San Francisco
Weekly, however, Friendster has been having its own unique problems:
"fakesters." The site was intended as a place for people with mutual
interests to find each other, preferably people who know each other in
the real world. It has a strict policy: "You must agree to be yourself
in your profile."
A bunch of members willfully violate this policy, calling themselves
things like Retarded Raver, Pure Evil, and G-d Almighty. Many have
joined what they call a "Borg Collective," determined to evade the
site's censors and change its policies.
One fakester, who calls himself "Roy Batty," after the replicant leader
in BLADE RUNNER, told the Weekly that he uses a fake identity on
Friendster.com because "Identity is provisional. It's fluid."
That's not much of a pickup line, in my opinion, but then again, if "Roy
Batty" believes that who he is changes from moment to moment, then he
not only can't know what he wants (like a date), he can't even know for
sure who the "he" is who is wanting.
Well, this kind of thinking makes the provisional "I" of me reach for
the Tylenol. Happiness is provisional? Identity is provisional? If word
gets out, nobody will ever date again --- at least not without first
administering the Voight-Kampf empathy test (again, see BLADE RUNNER for
And if it reveals that your potential significant other is a replicant
or a dating site hacker with too much time on his or her hands? You're
on your own, I'm afraid, whoever "you" are.
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JWR contributor Ian Shoales is the author of, among others, Not Wet Yet: An Anthology of Commentary. Comment by clicking here.
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© 2003, Ian Shoales