So yesterday was the day that everyone wrote about Match.com’s new screening policy: Starting soon, they’ll be checking their users against the sex offender registry. So not so much du jour as d’hier.
Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t see this as a huge deal. I’m not going to feel any safer knowing that all of Match’s millions of members have been cross-checked and that they’ve tossed out the sex-offenders (which is, I assume, what they’re planning to do). I won’t date any differently.
I mean, I assume there are a few criminals lurking in the datapool, and that most-likely, some of them have never been caught. And I date accordingly.
1) The email address I use for my online dating communications is not connected to my name and/or business in any way. I am untraceable until I choose to be traced.
2) I do not give out my last name or phone number to everyone who asks. I am very picky about who gets complete access to me.
3) I do not connect with dates via facebook or twitter right away.
4) I use an online dating username that is unique, not the same as my username on any other site(s).
5) I always meet first/second dates in public places.
Will doing all of these things guarantee that nothing bad will ever happen to me on a date? Nope. But I am reducing my exposure to harm and making it really hard for a man to get more access to me/my life than I’m comfortable with.
Which touches on my issue with the Match.com screening thing. My concern is that there might be people who suddenly assume they’re safe and let their guard down. Which would be the wrong assumption. There are bad people in this world. Bad things happen. That’s a fact.
Anyway, I felt like I had to write something about this.. being that it was everywhere. I’d love to know what other people think of this. Will this move make you feel safer? Do you think other companies should similarly screen? Would it affect your choice of an online dating provider?
For more on this topic:
Sex Offender Screening on Dating Sites is Messy – But it Needs to Happen; Gizmondo
Match Sex Offender Check: Online Dating Site to Check Users Against Registry; Huffpo
Match.com bans sex offenders – feel safe now?; Salon
Tags: facebook, Match, Online dating, online dating safety tips