The truth about online dating services

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That’s compared to half (50%) of online dating users doing it for fun, and 19% simply looking for sex.

The report outlined the responses of 6,458 online dating users from 30 of the countries survey, including South Africa.

It didn't take very long for internet savvy entrepreneurs to commodify online dating into a massive industry that seems to keep growing.

uk is "a free, upscale, private, online dating site where eligible royals, peers, and aristocrats may be matched with eligible Commoners." While the is a dating site for, wait for it, fans of the Fountainhead author Ayn Rand. But "charmer" is also a loaded compliment bestowed often on men but rarely assigned to women. "Women respond to that." "If she’s interested, there will be eye contact and occasional physical contact." Doug tells me, by way of a compliment that I am what his profession likes to term "socially adequate".

She’s recently come out of a long relationship with a famous actor. Still, he politely dined her, chatted about his life, his work and made oblique references to his remote but idyllic house in the wilds of Northumberland. A couple of weeks later, he’s alone in his weekend place on a stormy Friday night when the front doorbell goes. She’s Googled long and hard, located his second home, got a train up from London, then commandeered a mini cab and is now demanding to come in. That means I’ve broached the tricky subject of terminating our respective dating accounts (cyberlove etiquette for ‘this is getting serious’). In cyberspace, even when you’ve signed off and stopped the direct debit, your photo and biog remains.

It’s almost 11pm so he gives in, saying she’ll have to go home first thing in the morning. "F*** me," she says, storm clattering away outside. Three months after I’ve broken up with it, my dating service still pines for me, sending me tempting missives, photos, biogs messages, pokes and flirts.

""Get with the programme Granddad," the other cranial segment is urging. Then, the following morning, I wake up…to a text message. You are a lovely guy, but I don’t think we are compatible.

And what sort of a girl would want a date with the kind of loser who would sign himself up to an internet dating service, anyway?

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