Looking for love

08:58, September 30, 2010      

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Singles turn to videos in cyberspace for a perfect match

Blind dates and matchmaking parties are a thing of the past in China, with a growing number of Internet dating sites with video profiling the latest way to find a partner.

As more and more singles work longer hours and have limited social networks, online video dating sites are seeing a rise in subscribers due to their efficiency, according to Ma Liyun, a consultant at dating site Baihe.com.

Ma said that posting a video profile online is the quickest way to get maximum attention and attract the widest range of options.

"Seventy percent of our members initially contact each other through instant messengers. Those with video profiles get the highest popularity and page views," Ma said.

She explained that videos can be as short as 30 seconds or a feature-length film. Including contact details such as an instant messenger account will see potential partners follow up with a chat, date or Webcam conversation.

"The previous ways of finding a partner are not reliable," commented 28-year-old Beijinger Wang Lilin who found her husband after posting a video profile online. "The profiles I got sometimes differed too much from the real people," Wang said of her earlier efforts to find a match. "Dining out and going to the movies are not economical either," she added.

Wang explained that after posting her video profile online, she received hundreds of friend requests each day before selecting 20 potential suitors, talking via Webcam and then meeting them in person.

"Chatting with people via Webcam is instant and hassle-free. After I got to know them, I then met the ones I liked and finally selected my favorite," she said. "It is the most efficient way…luckily the one I picked loved me as well! I married him last year, after we dated for six months."

Luo Le, 33, from Tianjin also found his other half through an Internet profile video. "For five years I tried formal settings, being constantly introduced by aunties or relatives," Luo sighed. "I went to countless set-up dates and I met many nice girls and dated two but it didn't succeed and I got fed up with being set up."

Luo told the Global Times that he was already a member of a major dating website and took his friend's suggestion of adding a profile video to give depth to his member page.

"I filled in all of the questionnaires, such as my height, weight, hobbies, favorite music, books and so on and I always felt it was not enough," Luo said. "When my friend suggested to add a video profile I thought it was an awesome idea and much more real and individual, instead of being a product with a specification on a website."

Luo's profile attracted a record 30,000 page views every day and he met his future fianc Han Shasha, who contacted him after seeing his video. They dated for three months and are planning their wedding for later this year.

While many singles praise the efficiency of such an approach to love, others say that the match seekers are focusing on a result, rather than the building of a relationship and marriage based on time, trust and effort.

"Data shows that couples who speed date and instantly marry face a higher risk of divorce. Internet marriage seekers should not rush into marriage. Getting to know someone and building up trust and caring is essential before making a big decision," marriage consultant Du Yuan told the Global Times.

Source: Global Times(By Leng Mo)


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