Monday, September 17, 2012

Date My School: Creepy or Comforting?

If you’ve gotten off campus and onto Broadway over the past few days, you’ve probably seen the Date My School truck parked in front of Barnard and Columbia.

Some questions may develop when you see this truck:

What the hell is that truck doing there?
Isn't Date My School creepy? 
What even is Date My School? 

Over the past few days, I’ve tried to demystify Date My School by actually using myself as a "dating guinea pig."

Step 1: The Introduction
When first logging onto DateMySchool.com, you watch a video that defines what this dating game is all about. From the video, you find out Date My School is a service for finding people (possible friends or more than friends) within your university or university area. In order to even be able to use the site, you have to use a university email account. The video also stresses the website’s level of privacy: only the groups of people that you specify can see your profile. After the initial signing-in process, you pick from a series options to create your ideal “friend,” like his/her gender, age, school, nationality, and major.

Step 2: The Experiment
After punching in my university email and answering a few questions, I was able to set up a profile where I could add pictures of myself and write small descriptions about my personality. I browsed carefully through people from the category I selected, which in my case was men who are interested in women who come from the NYC area. Not long after, I came across a cute boy who goes to Columbia. I clicked on his profile and his interests and personality seemed to really fit mine. I then had the option to IM or message him. I messaged him and he kindly responded rather quickly! Online conversation quickly ensued and it was a great experience. Where you take it from there is your choice!


Things to keep in mind when using Date My School

It is a little creepy.
When I first started exploring the site, things were not weird at all--to be honest, it seemed like Facebook. But then, I realized people could see when I looked at their profile and I could see when people looked at mine. Date My School also keeps track of how many views your profile gets, so if a person keeps looking at your profile, you will be notified every time. Which sort of freaked me out. Also, at one point, a random boy IM’d me, and I won’t lie... it was weird. Personally, I wasn't a fan of either the tracked pageviews or the potential of being hit up by strangers.

You can either delete or de-activate your account.
Deleting your account is truly getting rid of everything about you on the site, and you are not allowed to create a profile for three months. De-activating is a little more lenient, like the Facebook option.

It’s all about your comfort level.
If the whole idea of online dating freaks you out, don’t do it. If you are open, even just slightly, to the idea, I’d say go for it. You may find someone, like I did, who was super nice (and not creepy) and find yourself in a great conversation.

Images courtesy of The Frisky and The Triangle.

2 comments:

  1. If you didn't want to get hit up on by strangers, why would you get online? Isn't that the point? The founders say they lament that this generation is too wired so there is no serendipity anymore, but then they create yet another online dating site, only this one is is exclusive to kids rich enough for the top schools? It's just kind of a little hypocritical, although Match.com and OkCupid do have tons of bad people on them to wade throughh. I had success and failure online. I'd say, get on, choose the first person that really strikes a chord without thinking too much like you saw them in a crowd at a party and they stood out. Every week you stay on, hoping to find the bigger better deal, the further away it will get. You'll chase infinity, and that's the problem with online dating as a whole. The best dating site idea would be to let you sign up for one month, only one month, and then bar you forever from joining again.

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