Love has found a new way to carve a niche in the hearts of millions of Australians with the advent of the digital landscape. Whether you hate it or love it, the reality of this technology prone society is that currently there are about 1.5 million profiles of Australians dating online which are predicted to surge up to an astonishing 2 million by the end of 2020. Relationship communication occurring online is now deeply embedded in our culture.
With Valentine’s day right around the corner many hopeful singles are desperately seeking their soul mate in the convenience of their homes with a computer. But can this digital medium of finding love be trusted? Many queries seem to trouble Relationship Experts and enthusiastic singles as the cases of online dating scams are soaring with every passing year. But even with the dark side of this unpredictable dating medium there is no stopping various Smartphone applications now readily available on the Internet.
It all gained momentum in 2010 when former Miss World Australia, Caroline Pemberton decided to become the dating guru for young girls in search of an ideal partner. The application known as ‘I’m Dating’ was her way of helping out young girls with the last-minute tantrums of a first date from deciding what to wear to dating etiquette check-lists. When she was questioned over the phone in an interview as to what motivated her to make this application she said “I went online and there weren’t many iPhone apps for girls and I thought: ‘Hey, there’s a market there.”
Recently a Melbourne woman named, Audrey Melnik, launched a dating application with the name of ‘WotWentWrong’ that helps first date failures to be rectified and reduce the inaccurate assumptions that people make.. The WotWentWrong press release stated, “People who thought the first date was awesome or saw no signs anything was wrong with the relationship can end up blaming themselves. It can cause lasting damage to someone’s self-esteem and future relationships. Closure can be hard to find on your own.” The application helps the user figure out the different reasons that went unnoticed, but contributed in causing a hindrance in the occurrence of a second date.
Despite various applications in the market to assist you in finding the right match or guiding you for a perfect date evening, the harsh reality of being rejected cannot be ignored. Grindr (for gay men), iDate, Zoosk, Flirtomatic and Four Square are few of the top-ten list of dating applications today. But despite the increasing user-rate one will need guidelines to protect themselves from the possibility of online scams. iiNet, Australia’s second largest DSL network, has issued its online dating-themed fact sheet as part of its ‘Online Safety Series’.
For those who have been unfortunate enough to be deceived by fake profiles do not need to meet the same fate this Valentine’s day.“The latest fact sheet in the Online Safety Series provides some useful tips for those looking for their dream date online” said iiNet’s Compliance Manager, Rebecca Moonen. Through their effort they strive to lay the foundations of a secure online dating environment.
What are your experiences of online dating in Australia? Has technology helped you find love or has it been a frustrating and futile exercise? Share your thoughts in the comment box below.