When judging a potential suitor via online dating, it is true that even the most simple or brief profile can speak volumes about the person.
This is a benefit - rather than a curse - to both parties. You can read a lot from a profile if you know what to look for. I have discovered from viewing over a thousand online profiles that you only need to make a quick decision when viewing a profile: either yes or no. It's so quick for the following reason: You are not doing the initiating. You are only scanning the messages that you have already rec'd in your inbox. My usual response to women who want to do The Rules for online dating is "Read The Book!, Single Girl". Going online and thinking you can do it yourself is how nice girls get hurt and then jaded. Not a nice place to be. Throwing yourself in with the piranhas before arming yourself with knowledge is just plain silly. But since you insist on doing The Rules without reading the book, I have a few tips on looking at online profiles.
The first thing is that the profile exists (I.e. the person is interested in meeting people online).
Re-read what I just wrote: meeting people online might not mean meeting them in real life. You've been warned.
Scan email only once a day, at a respectable time, for 5 minutes only.
I wrote a lot in that sentence so let me unpack that for you.
Getting obsessed with yet another inbox is the exact opposite of "The Rules". Instead, look at it this way: Perfect strangers have a golden opportunity to get in touch with you and make their best offer for 5 minutes each week day. They better make the best of it. That is the attitude you bring to checking your inbox. Quickly delete with messages that look unkind or weird in a bad way without reading them. No need to bug yourself. Then you are left with a precious few that have potential. Since most sites reveal when you are online and at what time, then your "appearance" must be at a practical time or else you risk being too available to opportunists.
Scan by picture
Next, a profile with a picture is great way to determine if you like the way he looks. Do not fall for that "It's so superficial" crap. It's not. Many, many people have mentioned feeling an initial "connection" with a picture that later turned into a lasting relationship. Always Follow your Instincts.
Then there are the quantifiable measures:
Is he smiling?
Is he in your age group?
How many pics are there? (there is such a thing as too many pictures)
Did he take time to shave and put on a suit or is is a picture of him drinking and driving (true story)?
Is it a close up head shot or a shot at a distance with sunglasses and a hat and 5 other guys all with their shirts off?
Is it him and a bunch of female faces all scratched out?
Is it just a picture of his penis? Or a picture of the penis he wishes he had (true story)?
All of these things are actual clues about what kind of man he is.
Torso shots taken in the bathroom mirror:
Think clearly for a second Single Girl. He will likely want one of you. This goes for penis shots, too. Tit for tat, as they say. This is not the guy for you. Buy a fireman's calendar and move on.
Scan by profile name
Men think they are being clever by including their sexual preference in their online screen name. But because men's idea of subtle is calling you 11 times an hour when you break up, something often gets lost in translation. It's never clever, just creepy. Think clearly again, Single Girl: Any man who permanently declares himself as "PussyCumLover007" is a certified lunatic. Or 15 years old. You decide.
Scan by subject line
Messages that begin with "Hi" in the subject line are always from guys who write:
"Any luck on here?
"How's the fishing?
"Where was that photo taken?
In short, these are messages from boring men who are scared of women and relieve their anxiety by amassing info about them in lieu of meeting them. Read and delete. You don't answer silly questions. They can always try again, no harm done. Do not be mislead that this was just an intro message and things will get more interesting as he "warms up to you". You do not have that kind of time, Single Girl, you are already on the internet -which means you didn't marry your high school sweetheart and the clock is ticking. You aren't being mean, you just don't answer silly questions.
Open Email and Scan for Normalcy
Do read extra-long emails/ erotic poetry. Delete.
Do not answer silly questions. Delete
Do not respond to rage and/or cleverness that goes nowhere. Delete.
A normal email reads:
I saw your profile and liked your picture.
I would like to meet for a drink
Drop your number, or here's mine
That's it! He was polite and he got to the point. He is making a valid connection and he is moving on with his life. Anything other than that is a no go. The way a man gets his intentions across is by SAYING THEM CLEARLY.
You will notice that I make no mention of his actual profile, the one where he wrote what he does and where he went to school. I do not want you to read that at all. You can discover all those things on your first drinks date. It will him something to talk about when you are the first girl who doesn't bring it all up in a big flood before you have sat down. All you need to know is that he is single, what he looks like and where and when you are meeting.