What good modern-day love story doesn't begin with a slide in the DMs? In the 99's and 2000's, online dating may have been reserved for thrill-seekers and hopeless romantics, but now, dating apps like Tinder and Bumble have made your local dating pool much more accessible to people from all walks of life.
We've come a long way from the days of eharmony and Black Planet, and recently one social media giant stepped into the romance industry and promises to make finding love easier than ever.
Last year, Tinder had an estimated 3.8 million users worldwide, which indicates that people from all walks of life are looking for love, but have we been swiping in the wrong places? While in the past, we may have been limited to carefully curated profile images and brief bios that are vastly ineffective in giving us the deets on potential suitors, Facebook's new dating feature wants to change that.
For women who, like me, are tired of pulling up at Applebee's hoping the man you met online isn't a catfishing serial killer who came to kidnap you and harvest your organs, Facebook Dating claims to be the answer to your romantic needs in a more personal way. The social media platform's new dating service, which was announced last year, has already been released in Argentina, Canada, Chile, Mexico, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, and as of last Thursday, the United States.
While there is no "swipe left, or right" option, people who use apps like Tinder, Bumble, and Hinge will find some similarities that will make Facebook Dating much easier to navigate, but there are a few key differences that differentiate the app from others on the market.
Facebook Dating, unlike other apps, gives users the opportunity to match with other singles based on location, but Facebook activity, like interests, events, and groups and offers a "Secret Crush" feature where you can select up to nine Facebook friends who you have a crush on without them knowing. The service acts as an app within an app that can be accessed in the tabs in your menu bar and has a number of safety features that will protect your privacy at all costs.
Although looking for romance online may be intimidating, Facebook's new feature may be your chance to dip your toe in the digital dating pool. Computer love isn't for everyone, but a lot of people who say that just aren't doing it right. It's reported that today, almost one-third of marrying couples met online, proving that your soulmate may just be swipe away. I can say without shame that pretty much every date I've been on in the past two years has been a result of online dating.
Some were good and most were bad, but there were a number of tips I picked up along the way. While Facebook Dating hasn't launched in every state just yet, I have a few tips and tricks to get you prepared. As a certified single and dedicated swiper, I've compiled a list of digital dating tips that you'll want to carry with you on this new and exciting journey:
Connect On Social Media
This tip will become less and less necessary thanks to Facebook Dating, but nevertheless, it's never a bad idea to get to know someone before you link up, and what better way to do that than lurking on their social media profiles? In my opinion, a person's social media presence can tell you things about them that they won't always verbalize.
Pro-Tip: Don't be weird about it. Be forthcoming about your lurking and allow him that same courtesy. Try to avoid jumping to conclusions before consulting with him about your findings.
Set Deal Breakers
One of the most horrible bosses I've ever had was also one of the wisest business women I've ever met. She told me to "set my non-negotiables", and this advice has proved to be more than effective in my romantic life. "Nah" is a whole sentence and that also has to be your mentality when choosing a potential suitor. Choosing 3-5 non-negotiable deal-breakers is an amazing way to narrow down your matches when seeking Mr. Right (or Mr. Right For Now).
Slow Down, Sis
I know your biological clock is ticking and you don't have time to waste, but when it comes to online dating, rushing things is a surefire way to create a toxic environment in your newfound relationship. Before you consider meeting up with a match, Facetime, talk on the phone, ask a few hard questions, because there's nothing worse than spending an hour alone with someone you have nothing in common with but mutual physical attraction.
Featured image by Giphy.