General Etiquette > Dating

Small misrepresentations- marketing, or deceit?

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whiterose:
I am not talking about misrepresenting big things on dating site profiles, such as gender/race/age/height/weight. I am talking about smaller things that a platonic friend/neighbor/colleague would likely not even notice (or care about), but that may affect romantic chemistry (including, but not limited to, physical attraction).

For example, hiding teeth and body proportions in these two cases:

http://www.abadcaseofthedates.com/2012/11/long-in-tooth.html

http://www.abadcaseofthedates.com/2013/05/last-in-superhero-naming-line.html

Or like these:

A) Emma has big upper arms- especially fleshy on top of her elbows. All of her profile pictures show her wearing long loose sleeves, wearing a shawl, or as part of a group with her arms hidden. Her pictures show her otherwise pretty face, nice hourglass figure of average build, and toned legs. Emma wears a nice dress with long loose sleeves to first dates (that otherwise shows her nice figure and legs) and does not show her upper arms till at least the second date. Emma does not want her "fat" arms to scare guys off, when she is otherwise very good looking.

B) Claudia states her ethnicity as "White/Caucasian/European". From her pics, it is obvious that her features are Caucasoid (I don't know if this term is archaic); however,  her exact ancestry is tougher for site users to pin down: French? Greek? Croatian? Claudia is from Argentina- and she is of Italian ancestry. She is fluent in English- her spelling/grammar/punctuation/capitalization are impeccable, and her vocabulary is very erudite, showing her advanced education- but she does speak with a Spanish accent. Claudia is a US citizen, so immigration/legality is NOT an issue. Claudia does not give any actual clues to her ancestry or nationality on her profile- it is not let out until you talk to her and hear her voice. Claudia does not want guys to assume she has a "Latin temper" and thus lose interest without getting to know her.

C) The dating site has a category asking the length of longest relationship. Suzanne checked the option stating "between 6 months and a year". Suzanne's longest relationship (if you could call it that) was 10 dates across the span of 6 months. And that was 5 years ago. There was a "less than 6 months" option available- but Suzanne marked the "between 6 months and a year" one. Suzanne does not want to be labeled a "loser" simply because she is 30 years old and has not been in a long-term/serious/marriage-has-been-discussed relationship- she has a very successful life otherwise.

Did any of these ladies commit deceit? Or is it just strategic marketing? 

Margo:
I don't see how any of them are even remotely deceitful.

A - Emma didn't show her upper arms because she was self-conscious about them. She didn't lie about them, she didn't photoshop someone else's thinner arms onto her picture, she just chose to cover up something she feels is not her best feature.

B-  It sounds as though Claudia is of European original. I think issues such as someone's ethnicity are deeply personal. She may see her Italian origin as the most important part of her heritage. She could equally have defined herself as an Argentinian, or as an American, without in any way being untruthful or deceitful. (And if you are having to pick from a list of choices, you go with what feels closest to the truth, often there isn't a box which is exactly accurate)

C- again, this is a personal matter. Who defines what is, or isn't a realtionship? It sounds as though Suzanne had a relationship which lasted for 6 months. Just because it remained one in which she was dating rather than (say) cohabiting doesn't mean that it was not a realtionship.

I also think that while these things *might* affect physical / romantic attraction for some, it's highly unlikely that they would affect it for everyone. After all, to take one example, if someone has a 'thing' for women with skinny arms, then he/she is likely to focus of profile pictures of women who are showing off their skinny arms, and so is probably less likely to approach Emma in the first place.

After all, there are lots of thing which would not appear on a dating site profile which might easily be 'make or break' for a potential partner - that's why you go on the date.

Yvaine:

--- Quote from: Margo on May 21, 2013, 07:50:31 AM ---I don't see how any of them are even remotely deceitful.

A - Emma didn't show her upper arms because she was self-conscious about them. She didn't lie about them, she didn't photoshop someone else's thinner arms onto her picture, she just chose to cover up something she feels is not her best feature.

B-  It sounds as though Claudia is of European original. I think issues such as someone's ethnicity are deeply personal. She may see her Italian origin as the most important part of her heritage. She could equally have defined herself as an Argentinian, or as an American, without in any way being untruthful or deceitful. (And if you are having to pick from a list of choices, you go with what feels closest to the truth, often there isn't a box which is exactly accurate)

C- again, this is a personal matter. Who defines what is, or isn't a realtionship? It sounds as though Suzanne had a relationship which lasted for 6 months. Just because it remained one in which she was dating rather than (say) cohabiting doesn't mean that it was not a realtionship.

I also think that while these things *might* affect physical / romantic attraction for some, it's highly unlikely that they would affect it for everyone. After all, to take one example, if someone has a 'thing' for women with skinny arms, then he/she is likely to focus of profile pictures of women who are showing off their skinny arms, and so is probably less likely to approach Emma in the first place.

After all, there are lots of thing which would not appear on a dating site profile which might easily be 'make or break' for a potential partner - that's why you go on the date.

--- End quote ---

Agreed with all of this.

lady_disdain:
What do you expect Claudia to identify as? Argentina had massive Italian immigration  in the early 20th century and many of those communities maintain strong cultural ties to Italy. The entire point of ethnicity is that a person may be of a particular nationality and belong to a different ethnic group.

LadyL:
In my opinion, anything that falls in the realm of "normal" or "average" doesn't need to be disclosed. Large upper arms - no. Female bodybuilder with very developed muscular build - yep. One or two tattoos - no. Full sleeves - yes. The question is, would a reasonable person feel deceived? I wouldn't care about the woman having 10 dates over 6 months vs. an exclusive relationship - 6 months is on the short side either way. Nor would I care at all about someone having an accent (that might be a bonus for a lot of people actually!).

The one about the woman with the large lower body cracks me up. I am about 2 sizes smaller on top than on bottom thanks to a generous behind and round hips. If I were on a dating site, I'd avoid posting misleading waist-up photos, because some guys really go for pear shaped women! I wouldn't want someone who thought I was petite all over because of a misleading upper body shot.

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