COMMUNITY: How to hook up online – what girls think
A while ago we approached guys to tackle one of the most fundamental questions of online communities, namely, how do guys and girls start talking. Having interrogated them, we’re here to harvest the insight of the fairer sex – expect some home truths here guys!
It was one of the more intense forum discussions that made us want to share our insights on how best to approach girls, and what not to say! These are the ladies who gave their opinions to the other half of the story (and staying consistent to our previous post, we’re not giving out their usernames, either).
Chris (25, São Paulo) – Makes bad jokes.
Ellen, (25, London) – Librarian and food lover!
Jezebel (22, Rockville Centre) – college student who spends most of my money on shows, always looking for the good in all people.
Bella Roja (33, London) – Fun, flirty 33 year old Kiwi girl who says it like it is -fan of drum & bass, broken beats, and soul music.
Carmen (25, Fort Worth) – advisor in the Higher Education sector, who loves music and would love to play in a band one day.
Ellie (20, Northampton) – an English student who likes to spend her free time listening to a wide variety of music, playing video games and reading books..
Naomi (27, Los Angeles) – Top bands? Slum Village, Sade, Flying Lotus..
THIS IS WHAT YOU TOLD US
DO YOU THINK A GUY SHOULD WRITE TO A GIRL FIRST?
Consensus would usually go for guys sending the first message – with a few ladies who say such gender roles are needless in 2013.
Chris (25, São Paulo): I do think the guy should make the first move, but I show my interest in visiting the profile.
Bella Roja (33, London): Depends. I am all for girls sending the first message. Instead of a function to “like” the profile, it would be good to have a “smile” or “send a song” or a poke or something, which is temporary… that would work nicely I think. I think a lot of people check each other out, but to test the waters a smile, poke or nudge would be good perhaps?
Jezebel (22, Rockville Centre): I typically think a guy should write to a girl first but it really depends. I most likely won’t message a guy first. If I was interested in them at all, I’d only go to their profile so they see that I looked and/or like their profile song.
Carmen (25, Fort Worth): Yes. I’m quite traditional and believe that the guy should always approach the woman first, when he is interested in her profile and what she has to say. Subconsciously, I believe that men like to pursue even though they say they’d enjoy being contacted by a woman. Any woman that contacted them, I feel they’d have less interest in. I don’t ever poke or mail anybody. Unless, they are women that I am interested in going to shows with.
HOW DO YOU DETECT COPY-PASTE MESSAGES?
Strong consensus – if there is no inquiry about specific details, message could likely be a copypaste one.
Ellie (20, Northampton): You can usually tell when someone is copypasting a message because there is never anything specific in what they’ve said, or if it’s just a compliment on your appearance, it’s probably been said exactly to another girl. Also, they don’t really pick up on key parts of dialogue, so you know they’re not really reading what you’ve put.
You can usually tell they’re not interested when they offer nothing to the conversation, if they’re giving bland answers or just take a long time to respond (I’m talking days, even if they’ve been online.) You can tell that they’re not into you.
Ellen, (25, London): I guess the messages that get someone engaged are when they have questions relating to the profile; “I see you like X. Did you see them play last year?”… If someone messages me something really generic then there’s nothing I could really respond too and I usually ignore those messages.
Chris (25, São Paulo): When the messages are too neutral and dont say anything specific about my profile. Already caught two guys who were doing that.
WHAT ARE TYPICAL THINGS THAT PUT YOU OFF?
Consensus would say it’s either compliments on their pictures or very, very bland questions.
Carmen (25, Fort Worth): I am most often turned off by men who comment on my looks. Saying things like..”I love your eyes, your smile is so beautiful, you’re so pretty” is pretty generic and sounds disingenuous. If you’re a somewhat attractive girl, you’ve heard it all before. It’s better for a guy to commend a girl for liking a hobby that they share. Shows that he’s paying attention.
Chris (25, São Paulo): Mostly be yourself, don’t try to fit in just to look more attractive for a bigger number of girls. I really dont like when the first message i receive is something about how I look, it looks so shallow and shows me that the guy don’t care about get to know me.
Ellie (20, Northampton): I have no idea what being unique in that sense means, I guess it means be different and don’t say the same thing and ask the same questions: i.e ‘how are you’ ‘you look cute’ ‘what’s up?’. It becomes boring, someone that actually engaged with your profile, picking up on a quote or a certain band, is way more interesting.
MR. NICE GUY vs. THE BAD BOY
Consensus? Different types for different people.
Bella Roja (33, London): Ah – this is a good question. We know that girls love assholes in some ways. They say they want nice guys, but they seriously do go for bastards a lot of the time. Women seem to confuse arrogance with confidence. There is a difference and often there is a fine line between the two.
Me? I love strong, confident guys. It works well for me. I also like playful guys with a fun/cheeky sense of humour as I am also that way inclined. I can dish it out as good as I get it – but it takes time to get to know if someone is a bit of a joker.
Likewise, I also like the strong, introverted and silent or creative types. I tend to see them as a challenge or something, haha. So… direct and confident works well for me… but I haven’t really had that too much on here. I am pretty open-minded to be honest. I am also a strong female personality myself, so you know… not everyone can handle that *g*
Carmen (25, Fort Worth): I’m pretty sarcastic and blunt, myself so I tend to enjoy that kind of banter, but when it comes to getting to know someone on a more personal level when the intent is to spark a romantic connection…I prefer the nice guy. I wouldn’t want to end up falling for an asshole. When guys talk about themselves or are arrogant, I quit replying. I would only meet a guy who I’ve had frequent conversations with and only in a public place.
Jezebel (22, Rockville Centre): I like guys who seem bad on the outside and look tough but are soft and sweet on the inside. It’s hard to detect that online though. I honestly don’t go on here that much. I would probably want to talk for a little while before meeting because I would want to make sure that it’s even worth it to meet them. Sometimes guys seem ok at first and then after you talk to them a little bit they say something that’s kind of a deal breaker.
Ellie (20, Northampton): I’m quite sarcastic so I do prefer a guy with that sort of sense of humour, but I can’t see why you can’t find sarcastic nice guys? I can’t stand the whole macho “get back to the kitchen” sort of personality, it’s not flattering or clever. I try to answer everyone so that I’m giving them a fair chance, but anyone who gets annoyed at me for no replying instantly is off the list. I’m busy, so I can’t be expected to reply all the time, so when I get “prompt” messages to reply, that just makes them look desperate. I’d continue to talk to anyone who didn’t seem over the top, constantly flattering me or insulting me, but when it comes to actually meeting them I’d have to carefully consider what we’ve spoken and about and if there is a possible connection there.
HOW ABOUT IGNORING MESSAGES?
No interest, too many emails. So guys, if you get no reply, time to move on. She’s not interested, or she’s getting too many emails.
Ellen, (25, London): I know that the sort of music I listen to probably has much more male listeners, so obviously I get a lot of messages. If I ignore a message I’m probably too busy, not interested, seeing someone else, etc. I don’t really like the follow up messages, apart from if you have been having a long conversation and have stopped replying…if the message is along the lines of telling you something new, “I heard a new band yesterday X, have you heard them?” then that is fine…if it’s “Why haven’t you replied?” or “oh so you don’t like me anymore” then I will think they are a bit of a twat and won’t reply.
Jezebel (22, Rockville Centre): When a girl doesn’t reply to a guy, she is not interested. It is a way of rejecting him nicely, without having to come up with an excuse for not being interested. I do it all the time. If a guy kept messaging me more than once or twice and I hadn’t replied, I’d get annoyed. Clearly it means I don’t want to talk to them.
Bella Roja (33, London): Ah interesting. I would say that online dating isn’t so good for the confidence! I used to always reply to people, but now I don’t if they say something dumb or insipid. I will always reply to someone who says something genuine, even if I don’t fancy them, because I can tell they have made the effort. I think it goes both ways.
I guess some girls – is it an English thing? – choose to deal with things, by not dealing with things. I have experienced this a lot with English culture, although I shouldn’t make sweeping generalisations. 8 out of 10 times I will reply unless it’s a weird/creepy/insipid message. So I don’t know what the answer is. I think some girls are just rude bitches haha. Fact. And guys can be rude assholes – or it’s “too hard” to reply. So it works both ways.
HOW DO YOU DECIDE? TEXT OR PICS?
Both. Abs, bathroom mirrors and cars just don’t cut it anymore.
Ellen, (25, London): No matter how good looking or interesting someone looks in their photos, I wouldn’t message someone with images alone. Also it probably shows that they think they can just rely on their looks and they might be a bit vain?
Carmen (25, Fort Worth): Both. I think it’s in our human nature to look at someone’s physical features first, and if we find them physically attractive, move on to what they have to say. If they are not attractive to me, I read their profile, but not in as much depth. But even if he is attractive, if he’s arrogant, dramatic, or uneducated, I lose interest.
Bella Roja (33, London): It’s both for me. I really really appreciate a profile which has good grammar (if English is their first language this is especially important!) And as I AM indeed a grammar geek, I have to say… it’s points off if you can’t write me mostly error free messages and use capital i’s or know the difference between you’re and your. Wow, I sound like a real bitch now!? Haha.
Bottom line: PICTURES ARE IMPORTANT. Don’t post retarded pictures of you getting wasted with your mates, or maybe do… if that’s how you are… at least you’re being honest. It’s good to see people’s eyes. I did start chatting with someone who didn’t have a photo but said he would send one if it was requested and I did, so he did. That was totally cool.
HOW DOES TASTEBUDS’ MUSIC MATCHING MATTER TO YOU?
Ellen, (25, London): Quite a lot. If someone messages me who has no shared musical interests then I think it’s really creepy. Why are they even on this site? Same if someone messages me and our only shared music tastes are really generic bands. I like talking to people about music and, hopefully like most people on this site, it’s something important to me, so I look for people that I can talk to about music.
Carmen (25, Fort Worth): It changes a whole lot. Someone whose into gangster rap, I personally don’t feel would have the qualities of someone who likes Ray LaMontagne or Bon Iver. I think that musical tastes really say a lot about an individual’s personality. I think that’s why I really like the site. If we share musical tastes, then I’m almost sure we’d get along.
Bella Roja (33, London): I haven’t had much luck with the people who are my top buds or music matches… in fact, due to my music taste, the guys who are my top matches musically are probably not my type and vice versa. I know that’s because I like music that appeals to a certain type I guess… although I’m always hoping that’s not the case! *g* If a guy is rating Skrillex as one of their top artists, chances are, we’re not really going to get along in a big way. But if they’re older, they probably wouldn’t be doing that anyway. I have judged people based on their music tastes, yes. Of course I’m probably not that keen on dating someone who’s really into heavy metal. But I don’t mind if they include that in a wider range of tastes. It’s all about variety I think and I am a huge music consumer and was once a huge music geek (my geekiness is less now). I don’t think there are too many girls around like me although I do know a few. I know my stuff when it comes to dnb especially! Haha.
Chris (25, São Paulo): Not much, to be honest. Of course having a similar musical taste is better for ice breaking, but i can find other things in common.
Naomi (27, Los Angeles): I really like this one in particular because I have always wanted to find someone who listens to similar music as me. I really feel that music says a lot about someone. The positive experiences I have had were meeting folks with the same interests as me, and actually having a genuine/exciting conversation. I love how Tastebuds will allow you to add your Facebook link or any other personal contact info where as other sites don’t (not to mention paying a fee).
HOW DO YOU THINK GUYS BEHAVE AND REPRESENT THEMSELVES ON DATING SITES?
The world is huge. The internet makes is look like quite small, but actually it is quite big. There is someone out there for all of you.
Ellen, (25, London): Too many guys have ‘nice guy complex’. They think if they play you compliments or spend the time messaging you, then you owe them something?
Carmen (25, Fort Worth): I think the some guys try too hard, posting a million picture of themselves in the mirror with their camera. In fact, girls hate those pictures. It makes you look insecure and needy. Some other guys, lay out their personality right there and then, and well…if you don’t like it…they tell you to move on. Guys should just be themselves and if they get a response great, if not, then that person really isnt interested in who they are. And no one wants that.
Ellie (20, Northampton): I think most guys are too eager to talk, send too many messages and can sometimes become a bit clingy, which gives off a desperate vibe. However, you do get some guys who seem to know how to hold a conversation, keep it interesting and not push you to reply all the time. It’s a mixed bag.
Naomi (27, Los Angeles): I sense that some men might shy away, because they may be afraid of rejection or the too good to be true thoughts. I also prefer a man to be themselves and not lie about what they like or dislike just to impress a lady.
WHAT SORT OF MEN DO YOU THINK USE ONLINE DATING?
Ellen, (25, London): All sorts. I think it’s lost it’s negative stigma. I know I use it because I am stupidly busy with work and university and friends, so it’s convenient.
Carmen (25, Fort Worth): I used to think it was guys that were genuinely interested in meeting a nice girl that possessed similar qualities, but after dating online briefly, and speaking to friends who use online sites…I feel like most men who use these sites are just looking to hook up. They enjoy the multitude of women that they have available to talk to and flirt with, and always have back ups.
Chris (25, São Paulo): Guys who are busy or insecure about their looks.
Ellie (20, Northampton): I think there is a few number of men using online dating because they struggle with meeting and speaking to a woman face-to-face, doing it over the screen becomes easier. However, I think there’s guys of every kind that use online dating, for example Guys that can’t find anyone they’re interested in offline turn to online dating, as it is an easier way to discover people, rather than just walking down the street.
ANY ADVICE FOR GUYS?
Listen up. Words of wisdom ahead!
Carmen (25, Fort Worth): Show interest in the girl, in her hobbies and in her values. Don’t focus so much on the physical.
Bella Roja (33, London): Just be courteous. Do make the first move. Read the girl’s profile. If you just want to hook up, use another site. Do ask the girl out for a coffee or drink or something if you genuinely think you like the look of her. Otherwise after several messages it just becomes a waste of time. Be genuine!
Jezebel (22, Rockville Centre): Be yourself, if you are an asshole, it will show. If you’re not an asshole, that will come through too. The worst thing you can do is fake it. Don’t pretend to be something or someone you’re not.
Ellie (20, Northampton): Don’t be pushy. If you’ve sent her 2 messages, don’t send another. Wait for her to get back to you. She could not have replied for any number of reasons, don’t assume it’s because of you. Also if you’re messaging multiple girls, don’t send them all the same message. Actually look at their profile and find something on there you can talk about, it’s way more interesting.
Naomi (27, Los Angeles): I would definitely say to be respectful. It’s ok to pay a woman a compliment, but do it in a respectful manner. Do not say or ask any vulgar/inappropriate questions mainly pertaining to sex at the beginning of trying to get to know someone, also do not be pushy if she does not respond right away (give her time). Women are emotional creatures and we like someone to listen and care about who we are as an individual. Making us laugh and smile are always pointers *g*
The Tastebuds Team
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