When Social Networks Bring Us Together, For Keeps

hawaii, social networking, social mediaA couple weeks ago I had the honor of attending the wedding of a great lady I learned a lot from in the year I worked for her. Katie met her now husband Rich on a little site called Match.com. She actually ended up on the site because a close friend of hers finally convinced her to put it up. After a little while on the site she came in contact with Rich.

They had they first date a short time later, referring to that first meeting as more of a ‘photo validation’ session than an actual date. It was pretty obvious to everyone around them that had an immediate connection and the stories told at the wedding about their dating experience and type of relationship really matched (no pun intended) what you would expect given both their personalities.

As I watching the service I was mulling the idea of dating and meeting people online. It isn’t something that is totally new, but certainly it is a relatively recent development in the human dating world. I hear people say negative things about the idea of meeting online, but after seeing Katie and Rich so happy together and knowing that they would have never met had it not been for the online connection, I solidified my own opinion on dating via networks like Match.com.

That is, it may be better than whatever it is we do now. I think of dating as very dependent on location, luck, and the people around you. It seems really inefficient and difficult to try floating around looking for someone that aligns with your values and personality. With the online method you skip all that and meet only people that you already have some things in common with.

My next door neighbors are happily married 8 years, an eHarmony couple. The power of the online method is that it doesn’t rely on so many random factors, it matches you with people that make sense and provides a platform to communicate without the pressure of a first date where you may not actually learn that much.

The bottom line is, online dating makes a ton of sense, way more sense than the random methods we employ now like bar and party hopping. Whatever stigma it still has will wear off soon and I won’t be surprised if a study comes out that online made couples are statistically happier and have longer relationships. Really, it’s a natural progression, we do nearly everything else online and it adds value to our life, why shouldn’t this be the same?

Congratulations to Katie and Rich, they are currently enjoying their honeymoon, beginning a very happy life together. It’s a beautiful thing when social networks play for keeps isn’t it?

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