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If the Internet is good for anything—and, actually, it’s good for lots of things—it’s good for finding a needle in a haystack.Whether you’re hankering after a pistol grip for that vintage Hasselblad single reflex camera, or want to learn all the lyrics to R. M.’s “It’s the End of the World as We Know it,” the World Wide Web has made tracking down and securing even the most obscure objects your heart desires a lot easier.Yet, when it comes to online matters of the heart, finding “the one” often remains elusive.That’s because love, like the Internet, has a lingo and etiquette all its own.Combining the two in an online dating scenario can complicate the delicate dance even further. Maybe Boy and Girl meet—or maybe they don’t, and if they do, do Boy and Girl live up to their profiles and live happily ever after?
There are myriad of dating sites on which you can cast your line to do a little love fishing.While many of said online matchmaking entities equate “attraction” with a mathematical equation, Nerve Dating (an off-shoot of the sex/dating/culture site, Nerve.com), has incorporated social media conventions into their platform that allow soulmate searchers to create connections via interactive conversations, rather than simply writing essays, checking off endless lists, and hoping for the best.We’ve tapped Nerve.com’s dating columnist Caitlin Robinson, AKA Miss Information, to offer some tips and tricks to those of you prepping to post your profile.NEXT: "Cool" guys finish last [pagebreak] Vague adjectives signal “dull” and appear in far too many profiles, Robinson warns.“‘I’m a laid-back, easygoing guy…’ Such terms are practically meaningless.Even high-strung people often think they’re ‘laid-back.’ Find something more descriptive.” Other common terms to be avoided: “cool,” “awesome,” “funny.” “Nearly everyone ‘loves to laugh’ and ‘enjoys fun.’ None of that sets you apart. “Put yourself into a potential date's shoes on this one. ’ Blech—that conversation is a total wipeout.” A better alternative, she explains, is telling stories.Instead of saying, ‘I’m witty,’” Robinson suggests, “say, ‘I’m one part Ricky Gervais, one part Jon Stewart, and a soupcon of Fred Flintstone.’ That paints a more vivid picture.” I like surfing, reading, swimming, jogging, and cooking. If you saw a list like this on a cute girl’s profile, how would you possibly respond? “ ‘Last summer, I went surfing at the Jersey Shore nearly every day with my dog Rufus. Buy me a beer, and I’ll tell you more.’ Something like that gives a date plenty to want to talk to you about—plus you sound like an active, interesting person, not just a list of gerunds.” Don’t stretch the truth, even on minor details.“Let’s say you're five-foot-ten, but you decide you’ll seem hotter if you say you’re six-foot-one,” Robinson says.“It may be a superficial detail, but if/when your date notices you fudged the numbers, she’ll wonder what else you sugarcoated.It’s not about the inch or two; it’s a sense that you’re insecure enough to be lying.You shoot yourself in the foot immediately.” NEXT: What could possibly be worse than lying?