Personal essay: writing authentic profiles

I’m sure you’re shaking your head at this title. So am I!

Here’s a bit of background before I lock this essay behind the paywall: I have friends and read blogs of people on dating apps. Mostly, I’m entertained, but simultaneously I’m intrigued by all that they share. What is clear however is this: there are a lot of lonely people out there, and in places with high lockdown periods (such as in my region), people took to the dating apps in droves.

It hurts my heart, truth be told, to know just how many people were socially isolated for so long. And remained this way during the slow and awkward lifting of restrictions in the subsequent months.

I watched all this with a heavy heart.

One day about half a year ago I loaded some apps myself. I was curious how they were set up and what their algorithm might look/feel like. As you probably know, I’m an active user of social media, especially since the launch of my jewelry business, so I had a general idea how things might work in terms of matching up people.

I looked at three apps. Each one had unique methods of registration, but all have limited displays of the date-seekers unless you upgraded to the paid version.

There are a few key differences though: One has a 4000 character limit in which you can advertise yourself in the “in your own words” profile.

Another has a much smaller spot to disclose, in short snippets, things about yourself. I think the limit is 160 characters if I remember correctly.

I can’t remember what the third one was like, but I do remember they have a large survey-type questionnaire where you slide your like or dislike on a bar. It was more personality based than marketing based (which would feed into their algorithm to match up liked-minded people).

It’s important to remember that these apps are businesses. To use them properly you have to pay. They lure you with certain free versions (I can see the men on some of them but I don’t pay for the privilege to respond to messages). But to connect with or respond to any of them, you have to upgrade (pay).

Don’t think these apps care about you – it’s an algorithm attached to taking your money, no matter how much they advertise how they will help you find blissful, enduring and passionate love. ๐Ÿ™„

Like I said, I was curious. Words are important to me, and mostly I wanted to see how the words inside these profiles were crafted.

How did people advertise themselves to a market of other date-seekers?

It took me some time to come up with a profile myself. It was extremely difficult to write, initially, but after a while, I got the the hang of it.

Point is, I wrote what I thought was an eloquent profile and posted it as an experiment.

What happened next was a little surprising. I’ll write about this another time.

Today, I rewrote a new profile. I will post both under Premium Content which you can access for a small fee.

Note: I hid/snoozed my profiles on the dating apps, meaning, they are not currently visible to the date-seekers (or you if you’re curious). I didn’t know this feature existed until after some things happened, but it is a handy feature to use if you need a break/have met someone/are unsure if the time is right to proceed.

For me, writing a profile was a lesson in self-esteem building and, there it that word again, marketing and advertising.

This content is highly personal and available to read for a small fee.

Thank you for understanding and your support.

12 thoughts on “Personal essay: writing authentic profiles

  1. Are you on dating apps or apps geared towards friendship? I understand you want to do research, but no guy truly on a dating app is only looking for friendship. I’m not saying they only want sex, there are a lot of slimy guys that only want hookups, but a relationship is a relationship, if someone invests time in establishing something close and it never goes to the next step, there will be heartache. Your profiles come across as incredibly genuine and direct but also a tad bit high maintenance.

    Meeting through dating services, ads, phone calls, and apps never worked for me. The day I said the hell with Go fish (or whatever it was called) I met my future wife.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Husband complained a lot about online dating. The challenge of gauging interest when the free versions of the account didn’t allow for sending and receiving messages. Writing profiles no one read. Reading profiles that weren’t sincere (eg. matches writing about interest in hobbies they really were not interested in). And this was before the apps.

    I never tried online dating. I met Husband at a party. But this was in pre-COVID times where you could do crazy things like have a party with people you don’t know.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I heard of 70+ women looking for boy-toys. I heard from men who are 60+ who put in their profiles that the only women who are interested in them is the 70+ crowd. I find this so… strange. Really? So the guy in question lowered his age to 51 (from 61) so he can get a bunch of women in their 40s and 50s to show interest in him.

      Funny thing is, he put the fake age in the algorithmic spot, but ‘came out’ with this real age in the “in your own words” profile in the first sentence.

      See what I mean about the background workings of these apps? Kind of fascinating.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. A ton of likes? A great ego boost! Then I’d be suspicious. Of course, I’m always surprised that people find me interesting. Childhood baggage๐Ÿคท๐Ÿผโ€โ™€๏ธ

    I’m with you about putting the hearing loss out there right away. I tell people all time, as soon as I have to ask them to repeat themselves. I warn them that if they want me to answer their questions they have to make themselves heard, or they’re gonna get a smile and a blank look.

    The dating scene, apps or the old fashioned way, like talking to people in coffee shops, or grocery stores, wherever… feels ucky to even think about. I guess I’m still out of the market๐Ÿคท๐Ÿผโ€โ™€๏ธ I don’t have time for it anyway.

    It IS sad that so many people feel so alone. Craving simple companionship, touch, hugs… โ˜น

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The likes and messages are insane. I can see some of them but I can’t do anything with them, which is just as well because I’d have to set aside countless hours just to deal with that.

      It doesn’t seem real, somehow…

      Like

    1. I found the exercise, to write the profile(s), enlightening. Even though I suspect the majority of the masses of men (hah) don’t read beyond the first sentence, if at all. It’s all about pictures anyway I think. The elusive ‘is there a spark, will there be sex’ is the prevalent theme. Ugh.

      Just ignore people who told you that and do what you want. You can write a profile for yourself (in some private place) and go back and modify it every few weeks or so. It helps with self-esteem. Take it from someone who knows and understands this. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Like

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