Nozlee Samadzadeh of The Morning News examines the various opinions from a panel of experts on "the scourge and savior of contemporary romance": online dating.
Any time a new form of communication is invented -- the penny newspaper, Morse code, the telegraph, Ham radio, TV, computers -- men and women find ways to use that technology to find love. Commercial matchmaking services are not a new phenomenon. Before online matching services existed there were matchmakers, personal advertisements, video dating services, singles clubs, Lonely Hearts clubs, and mail-order brides.
Meanwhile, John Ortved of Bullett Media wonders, in a day where the Internet is a "virtual playground where love is born, sex is exchanged, and practically every fetish has its own URL," how online dating went from "smutty back pages of free newspapers to the billion-dollar business."
I used to joke about creating an emoticon that would resemble a real, human face. Its meaning: no relationship that began on the Internet would ever amount to anything. Never particularly hilarious, the joke has grown increasingly redundant over the past decade, as the blossoming and festering of relationships born within the digital sphere have become commonplace. It turns out that Cruel Intentions' Sebastian valmont was wrong -- the Internet isn't just "for geeks and pedophiles." People, myself included, now freely admit to browsing OkCupid or Match.com, to stalking crushes on Facebook, and to supplementing our love lives with an occasional dip in the digital dating pool. But how did we get here?