The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by BasedBuzzed on Fri Oct 03, 2014 4:25 pm

I'd try to opt for pictures with a smile that has you with a closed mouth, or at least a lopsided grin. The current ones look a bit constipated, for lack of a better word.

Also, expand a bit on your hobbies. What kind of dancing are you doing? What kind of data do you work with? Sprinkle it with observational humour(just stating it falls under nonA's criticism, methinks) while doing so.

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Gentleman Johnny on Fri Oct 03, 2014 4:55 pm

nonA wrote:
Let's go right back to the drawing board.  Who are you hoping to find?  What are you doing to make them be interested in you?  

Also, as a personal incitement to rage pet peeve, never say you're funny.  If you are funny, be funny.  If you're not, all you're doing is calling attention to your lack of skill.

This is some good stuff for everyone here. Who's the match you're looking for? Write something that highlights your comparability with her. This isn't a Facebook profile, its ad copy. Its honest ad copy because why try to be something you're not but you can certainly pick and choose which assets to put front and center. Personally, I need to take another pass at mine.
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by IntelligentDice on Fri Oct 03, 2014 5:22 pm

BasedBuzzed wrote:I'd try to opt for pictures with a smile that has you with a closed mouth, or at least a lopsided grin. The current ones look a bit constipated, for lack of a better word.

Also, expand a bit on your hobbies. What kind of dancing are you doing? What kind of data do you work with? Sprinkle it with observational humour(just stating it falls under nonA's criticism, methinks) while doing so.  

Yeah I truly hate photographs of myself. I'd much rather be behind the camera.

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by BasedBuzzed on Fri Oct 03, 2014 8:07 pm

IntelligentDice wrote:
BasedBuzzed wrote:I'd try to opt for pictures with a smile that has you with a closed mouth, or at least a lopsided grin. The current ones look a bit constipated, for lack of a better word.

Also, expand a bit on your hobbies. What kind of dancing are you doing? What kind of data do you work with? Sprinkle it with observational humour(just stating it falls under nonA's criticism, methinks) while doing so.  

Yeah I truly hate photographs of myself.  I'd much rather be behind the camera.

Smiles, like everything, are trainable. I myself can't really give a full smile without looking like I'm plotting something, so I opt for a closed-mouth smile or a grin.

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Gentleman Johnny on Fri Oct 03, 2014 11:25 pm

I cant' say this makes a huge difference but its something on OKC that's fun for me:
Remember that every time you update your profile, it pops up in the recent changes feed on appropriate people's home page. There's a section for "On a typical Friday Night I am. . ."
Every week I update that with a sentence about what I am doing this Friday. It keeps me visible but just as important, it makes me take stock of the things I get out and do on the weekend. I don't pick activities specifically to put in my update but thinlking about it reminds me not to just crawl into bed and watch Netflix all weekend.

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by kath on Sat Oct 04, 2014 12:21 am

nearly_takuan wrote: "I see by your outfit that you are asexual / I see by your outfit that you're asexual too / We see by our outfits that we are asexual"

Now I'm imagining OKC message conversations as song and dance routines in cowboy clothes. And if the person who messages you it isn't dying of a shot to the chest, count it as a good day! Also now I want to listen to cowboy ballads.

ON topic, for photos, I think DNL had an article with tips to look good in photos. One was to kinda stick your head forward a tiny bit to emphasize your jawline, and pair that with thinking about the classic shoulders-back, string-through-head-to-ceiling thing and I find that helps a lot. Here we go: http://www.doctornerdlove.com/2014/06/leveling-up-how-to-look-good-in-photos/

P_Johnston, I think in your Typical Friday Night, giving some idea of what this: "I chance to take lovely ladies out for a night of splendid entertainment." means would be cool. I sort of think it's some really delicate euphemism. Or you are taking them to the Alhambra, the saloon from the musical The Harvey Girls.
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by nearly_takuan on Sat Oct 04, 2014 12:38 am

Credit where it's due: 'twas a Smothers Brothers joke before I twisted it once more. Wink
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Ron Ritzman on Sat Oct 04, 2014 10:04 am

On OKC, I think there needs to be a 4th option for question importance, "deal breaker". Don't even show me matches from those. This would be useful for "entitlement" related questions such as "are there any situations where someone is obligated to have sex with someone else.

In any case here's mine for what it's worth.

http://www.okcupid.com/profile/RonRitzman/
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Guest on Sat Oct 04, 2014 10:12 am

IntelligentDice wrote:Well I can throw another shrimp on this barbie:

Skewer away

When I finished reading your profile, I felt like I knew what you liked, but not like I really knew you at all. I don't have an sense at all of what spending time with you would be like, which, if I came across your profile or got a message from you and went to check you out, would make me move on without sending anything.

I know brevity is good, but I'd try to add more to almost every answer (except the favorites section). The about me section in particular seems to need more. Imagine that a close friend or family member was trying to describe you to someone they were trying to set you up with. What would they say about you?

Another piece of advice is that if you have a hard time talking about yourself, but an easier time talking about your interests, talk about why you like them in more detail, in a way that makes your enthusiasm catching. I can see you like ballroom dancing, but I don't have any sense of why. Is it the formalism of the moves, the joy of feeling like you're part of the music, the chance to connect with another person? Try to make other people feel the same pleasure you do, and they'll feel warmer towards you.

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Guest on Sat Oct 04, 2014 10:22 am

Ron Ritzman wrote:On OKC, I think there needs to be a 4th option for question importance, "deal breaker". Don't even show me matches from those. This would be useful for "entitlement" related questions such as "are there any situations where someone is obligated to have sex with someone else.

In any case here's mine for what it's worth.

http://www.okcupid.com/profile/RonRitzman/

Okay, I have possibly the weirdest piece of feedback ever to start off... your main profile pic feels like it's judging me. There's just something about the expression and the direct eye contact and the angle of it that is a little bit intimidating. Can I suggest either a pic where you're not looking straight into the camera or one where you're smiling a bit more?

The About me section is really long. Unless I was really liking what I read in the first paragraph or two, I probably wouldn't stick it out to the end. There's some good stuff in there -- honest, open, and real -- but it's getting lost in the noise, some of which reads a bit defensively. I'd chop out in particular the part about the PUA community and the "numbers game" parts, which read a bit defensively. I really like the second and 4th paragraphs best, and might be tempted to cut down to just those and see what happens.

I like the Friday night answer as half of a Friday night answer, but I'd add something that shows you do things on other nights or days that are interesting, because otherwise it reads a bit as "I never do anything except work."

The crying answer as a private fact is interesting, but I'd add detail if you can: "I cry at XYZ" or "I cry when ABC".

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Ron Ritzman on Sat Oct 04, 2014 10:31 am

Yea, the profile picture was a "selfie" I took after a haircut. It's the same one I use for my FB cover photo and I use because it's the most recent picture of me. I really need a better one. :(
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by nonA on Sat Oct 04, 2014 8:28 pm

PJ:  Go out with friends and try to have some more pictures taken.  You want some variety to show that you do a variety of stuff, and that you look decent instead of just a handful of picks from a bunch of selfies.

Only other problem I see is inherent to where you are.  Attractive young women in Vegas are going to get a crapton of attention, and attractive young geeky women will be deluged with geekboys.  You're not bad, but high competition situations like that require constantly keeping an eye on the competition to make sure you stay in the upper tier of geekboy.

ID:  I want you to mull over the idea of message hooks.  Things that could easily springboard a conversation.  Right now you're just a nebulous mass of "I'm a geek".

Conversations are more likely to happen if you make conversations easier.  Sounds simple, but a lot of people bung it at both the profile and message levels.  Focus on how you can get better at that.

Ron:  Who are you hoping will find your profile attractive?  More to the point, who are you expecting to find your profile attractive?

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by The Wisp on Sat Oct 04, 2014 8:47 pm

I just want to plug this nifty (and free!) Chrome extension for OkCupid that I found a few months ago that I think some here would find useful. You can select up to four qualities that you really are interested in (veganism, polyamory, views on race, views on consent, etc.) and it will display little bar graphs based on the person's answers to questions relevant to these categories (if they answered any). You can mouse over each bar and it will display the question and their answer right there. You can edit which categories it displays right in OkCupid; the extension blends into the site very well.

I think people here with specific preferences in a partner on certain issues will find it useful!

Check it out: http://benjaffe.me/projects/date/
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by nearly_takuan on Sat Oct 04, 2014 9:52 pm

Ben Jaffe wrote:You could manually look at the questions you have in common with the user, but who does that?

Um, I do. I go straight to "Unacceptable Answers" and almost always see two of these three:

  • If you turn a left-handed glove inside out, it fits... (do you even think before answering a question)
  • What was the duration of your longest romantic relationship? (what are your expectations for other people and what's your favorite insult)
  • Should evolution and creationism be taught side-by-side in school? (are you under the impression that evolutionary theory is in doubt)


Of course, I'm beginning to wonder how accurately any question measures anything given that it seems like even the most precisely-worded questions have different interpretations for different people. I've seen several women answer "how many children would you like to have" with "none", mark "1-2" as unacceptable, and then explain that they'd prefer to adopt. Whereas when I initially answered the question, I was thinking I would probably end up adopting a kid, but I would still consider that to be having a child. Due to unreliability, I un-answered that question.

I leave a lot of the logic questions alone for the same reason. One's enough to manually sort out whether someone outright didn't spend five seconds considering before clicking something; too many others just fill up space.

I've also seen "do you think it is possible for someone to be an Atheist and still have a solid moral framework by which to live?" answered with "No", and the explanation: "Possible though depending on the person, but there wasn't a maybe option."

I dunno, seems like there are problems with relying on just a few specific questions, and there are also problems with answering too many. The other day an "83% match" popped up in my inbox and when I looked, I'd answered 50 of her 1720 questions—so even though we'd answered differently on almost everything there was enough uncertainty to stick us together. And apparently she "liked" my profile. scratch

ETA: Hm. I like the idea of this kind of tool, but I still feel like the metrics are a little off. For example, if you say you'd consider dating someone else if they were in an open relationship, that goes into an umbrella metric judging how "monogamous" you are. The fractional scoring system in general is pretty opaque—which I guess relieves the temptation to reverse-engineer or otherwise load the questions even more, but it also leaves me wondering if I've only gone from shooting in the dark with a pistol to shooting in the dark with a semi-auto.
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by IntelligentDice on Sun Oct 05, 2014 11:14 pm

nonA wrote:ID:  I want you to mull over the idea of message hooks.  Things that could easily springboard a conversation.  Right now you're just a nebulous mass of "I'm a geek".

Conversations are more likely to happen if you make conversations easier.  Sounds simple, but a lot of people bung it at both the profile and message levels.  Focus on how you can get better at that.

I tried to do that by interspersing questions in my answers. Obviously they didn't stand out enough. I've tried to make them more apparent. Can you give me an example of a 'message hook' as I'm struggling to grok it.

And in the process of doing all that, I've added more depth at ElizaJane's suggestion. Kind of a win-win there.

Thanks everybody! It's kinda cool to open your page and see 'Your profile has X visitors."

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Guest on Sun Oct 05, 2014 11:25 pm

ID: I like this version a lot better. I feel like you're coming through a lot more in the profile. I especially like the "I'm good at" section, which shows a lot of personality and feels like someone a person could connect with. Smile

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by IntelligentDice on Sun Oct 05, 2014 11:27 pm

ElizaJane wrote:ID: I like this version a lot better.  I feel like you're coming through a lot more in the profile.  I especially like the "I'm good at" section, which shows a lot of personality and feels like someone a person could connect with. Smile

Thanks! cheers

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Guest on Sun Oct 05, 2014 11:28 pm

And since I've been commenting a lot here, I'll throw mine open:

http://www.okcupid.com/profile/glishara

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by nearly_takuan on Mon Oct 06, 2014 12:30 am

ElizaJane: Not sure if others will agree, but "don't judge" always reads really defensive to me, like you're insecure or argumentative about diet soda.

I know it's also common to advise not talking about the kids too much, but some indication of their ages/maturity level might help tune the kinds of people who respond to your profile a bit further. (Is one of them very small, or are they all "tweens"-ish? Do you take them with you on your going-out-adventuring nights or do you generally make other arrangements? Etc.) Though I guess this also depends on whether you are getting too much unwanted attention or too little wanted attention.

Not sure how much of an effect this actually has, but I noticed this:
It makes me sad that I no longer have the time or the social circle to play GURPS.

I haven't written fanfic in nearly two years, and this makes me sad, but not quite sad enough to start writing it again.
One instance is playful, two makes me wonder if you really are feeling down a lot. Three of the six lines in your self-summary are about things you have an interest in but don't actually do anything about. Because you very reasonably don't have time/resources for them, but still... I'm having trouble deciding whether that will generally read more as "these are things I would enjoy sharing with a partner if some day we are close enough to share the load of other responsibilities and thus have time for activities" (good) or "my life is already really packed full of responsibilities so I don't even have time for things I really like" (not so good).

As for what can go there instead, ...I think I still need to ponder that a bit more. I'm hoping these remarks get some gears turning elsewhere in the mean time, though.
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by Guest on Mon Oct 06, 2014 12:33 pm

By the way, if any of you Americans are wondering why a 35-year-old Brit in a corset making Princess Bride jokes is viewing your profile.... that would be me.

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by WJMorris3 on Mon Oct 06, 2014 4:26 pm

embertine wrote:By the way, if any of you Americans are wondering why a 35-year-old Brit in a corset making Princess Bride jokes is viewing your profile.... that would be me.
Questioning things like that just seems inconceivable to me.

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by MetropolisFan on Tue Oct 07, 2014 10:04 am

Guess I'm a little late to the party but I thought I'd chip in too; would love some advice since I'm getting a bunch of visitors but almost NO replies...

*throws cards on table*

http://www.okcupid.com/profile/ihatesilverfish/?cf=profile
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by BasedBuzzed on Tue Oct 07, 2014 10:44 am

Looks swell, but you sound a bit "all work and no play". I'd put more an emphasis on what you love about working towards your degree, and less on the dilemmas you run into. If you're a busy person, make it clear in available time("I work on either grad school or a job in X on most weekdays and Saturday, but still make time to wind down with hobby Y"), and not in vague references which give the impression you're just terrible at planning, like the Friday night part.

The Messag Me If is also a tad too deprecating of everything you wrote beforehand. Your profile isn't weird in the slightest(especially with the crowd you're aiming at) and your profile's not overdosed on references. If you want to have good conversations, give the users some prompts on topics.

On pics, I'd put the picture of you and the guitar forward, especially since music is such a large part of your life.

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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by kleenestar on Tue Oct 07, 2014 10:54 am

"I'm quite confused and conflicted in life" sounds like you might be a drag to spend time around, particularly when combined with "I'm an introvert who doesn't want to be an introvert anymore." If I were on the dating market, I wouldn't even bother to read further. I think you can say both those things without sounding quite so negative. For example, "It turns out it's hard to balance loving music and making money - who knew?" or "I've been an introvert for a long time, so I'm giving my inner extrovert a chance to shine."

Under things you're good at, you put "I'm terrible at phone calls though, never really got the hang of them." I share this trait, but it seems weird that you felt you need to include it. Maybe say "Texting. I'm terrible at phone calls though, never really got the hang of them." Then it's contextualizing what you're bad at with what you're good at.

Please lord cut the "duuuddeee."

Everything else here looks good to me!!
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Re: The Same OLD Stories: Dating Profile/Message Advice

Post by MetropolisFan on Tue Oct 07, 2014 11:26 am

Thanks people! I appreciate the advice; will be sure to change things around!
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