The truth about lies

There’s a recent study out about how a bunch of guys tell a bunch of lies in their dating profiles.  Specifically, the creepy-to-me auction-style online dating site What’s Your Price conducted a “study” which found that 30% of men in NYC lied in their online dating profile. They go on to rank truthfulness by major metro areas across the country.

This Salon.com piece is the best summary and response I’ve seen. In a nutshell, yes, people tell little white lies on their dating profiles, and men and women tell different types of little white lies. But realistically, most people practice some form of self-deception and self-aggrandization in any type of dating scene. The Internet doesn’t cause this behavior, it merely documents it.

Image from the DigitalTrends.com analysis of this study.

It’s also worth nothing that I don’t think this was the most scientific study ever conducted. :P Heck, Cupid PLC was recently accused of faking profiles to entice membership, and frankly, studies conducted by an online dating site (however weird) are simply not using trustworthy, unbiased methodology. We need another Duke or Harvard sociology study, given how much the marketplace has shifted!

In short, don’t read too much into this “men are such total liars omg” survey. Maintain a grain of healthy skepticism in dating anyone, online or not, and in meeting anyone for the first time, male or female. Learn to spot red flags and practice basic safety with Internet dates. Don’t let statistics block you from trying to find love, and don’t assume any one person is a sack of lies or a beacon of truth. The sooner you move from profile to in-person interaction, the sooner you’ll get a decent read on a person and know whether there’s any potential romantic connection. And if you still need some guidance, drop me a line. ♥

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