Jewish Journal

Internet & Dating: Tips from Expert Julie Spira [VIDEO] + Tech “Diss”-course

by Ryan Torok

March 17, 2010 | 2:30 pm

Melanie, our multimedia reporter, and I went to see Julie Spira. She’s a cyber-dating expert (still searching for her own love) and author of “The Perils of Cyber Dating.” The book suggests that while online dating occasionally leads to awful experiences, keep the hope alive: Love can be found online.

In a video, edited by Melanie, which you can watch below, Spira offers tips on how to date online, successfully. I’ll let the video speak for itself. For now I’m interested in getting over-analytical about something Spira said during the interview.

Spira, who has been using online-dating websites for over twenty years, has this huge web presence. She uses online tools like Facebook and Twitter to promote an online company, cyberdatingexpert.com. 

Melanie said it best in a recent Gchat conversation: “Spira has embraced and turned to the internet for her 2nd life.”

Hmm… Spira did say that the people who aren’t using Facebook, Twitter and posting videos of themselves on YouTube, are “missing out.”

Reinforcing that we have cool jobs, Melanie and I, during work hours, talked more about this. We did it over Gchat, while sitting at our cubicles, which are only a few feet away from each other. These are a couple of words Melanie introduced to me.

1. Luddite -  “People who will live their life on a daily basis,” said Melanie.  “They won’t search through Craigslist for housing or jobs. They won’t seek possibilities via the internet. They don’t think about where they could be, or what else they could be doing. They think about the here and now.”

Apparently, Melanie had dated a guy like this. He actually sounded like a bit of a jackass.

2. FOMO – This is an acronym that Melanie came up with. It stands for “fear of missing out.” She offered the idea that people spend all day online out of fear of what they might be missing on – because the internet is a means for them to actively seek, albeit voyeuristically, further possibilities of what their life could be (vacations, friends, connections, images, job listings…).

FOMO is also a reason I feel compelled on a Friday night, even if I am exhausted, to leave the house and go out for the evening.  Moreover, FOMO might compel someone to use an online dating site, feeling that they are missing out on their match if they don’t search through the internet.

Below is an excerpt from the conversation:

melanie: maybe we are fascinated by [Spira’s] inculcation into technology. there was something about her charisma.

[I didn’t say this in the conversation, but “inculcation” is quite the vocabulary word. I certainly didn’t know what it means. Way to go, Mel!]

ryan: i wish julie would find somebody and get married

ryan: somebody she DIDNT meet online

melanie: haha

melanie: yeah

ryan: that would be ironic i think

melanie: i think ultimately that while the internet represents a means to actively pursuing more possibilities, it is ultimately disappointing

ryan: as is life

But, I guarantee you won’t be disappointed with Julie’s online dating tips [insert cheesy grin; hold camera steady]. Watch below:

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Ryan Torok is a staff writer and community reporter at the Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, where he has spent the past four years covering everything from social justice...

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