aNewDomain commentary — One of my favorite jokes is to say something that places me in time, say, a 1989s pop reference, and then follow it up with: “I really shouldn’t date myself, but my wife won’t let me date other people anymore.”
But let’s talk about dating. These days, you have your choice between general dating sites and those aimed at specific populations. OkCupid is fun and full of silly personality tests. EHarmony touts itself as scientific, using less silly assessments to estimate your compatibility. That’s mostly a serious attachment kind of site if the advertising is genuine: they cite the number of marriages arising from their contacts. There are flingier sites, too. AdultFriendFinder probably doesn’t count, and neither does AshleyMadison.
Both are plagued with problems of fake profiles, overstated claims and entertainment for hire..
Outside of these general interest sites, though, you can get into dating sites with increasingly narrow specifications.
Christian Mingle, for example, lets you sift through a dating pool of people who share that belief system. There is also JDate.
I find this to be a puzzling phenomenon. Any of the main dating sites can provide categories for religiosity. Even OkCupid can do that.
Do we really need whole sites to prevent any possible contact with people of differing faiths as though such faiths or, god forbid, atheism, were a communicable disease you could catch by an ally browsing an unbeliever’s profile?
Don’t be silly.
These are just ways for webmasters to monetize your bigotry.
God’s plan for you seems to be contingent on your having good enough Wi-Fi.
There are other ways to pre-narrow your searches, though. OurTime is maybe the most rational of these. This is a site for people whose hair is naturally white. It’s very difficult to compete on the general interest dating sites. Browsers’ standards are psychotic sometimes. You have to have a profile picture to get any attention at all, and then people are very, very judgy about attractiveness – as well as faith, weight and age.
Someone looking for a mature relationship with someone in their own general age bracket might have quite good reasons to go to a specialty site.
But what about farmers?
FarmersOnly is a dating site for, well, farmers only. Do people working in agriculture have lives so different and distinct from the rest of us that they need their own dating site?
Democrats and Republicans can date within the confines of their own narrow beliefs, too, without all the hassle of clicking a check-box on a form on a more general interest site. BDSM aficionados might need their own site — the people that put out AshleyMadison.com actually offer one.
What about geeks? Apple fans? Linux nuts? Prison inmates? Tall people?
You know you can specify on a general-interest site, right? What do we need any of this for?
And where is all this going?
Well, follow it to its natural conclusion. As the sites cater to ever narrower interests, with all the exclusions up front, we can pick sites that eliminate differences. As the people we are looking for are allowed fewer differences from us, eventually we can specify someone exactly like us.
But nobody on Earth is more like you than you are.
So the only natural conclusion is that you wind up dating yourself.
Which you really shouldn’t ought to do. I mean, isn’t one of you enough?
For aNewDomain, I’m Jason Dias.
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