Should Background Checks Rule Online Dating?
It sounds like a superb idea, running background checks on those that sign up for a particular online dating site to ensure that they are not only felony-free but are single as well. However, recent legislation voted down in Illinois would have made it mandatory for personals sites to report whether they do background checks or not, seemingly a move to prompt dating site services that currently do not do so be viewed as inferior to a competitor.
However, the devil as always is in the details and while online singles websites that run background checks are free to use that fact in marketing the site, legislating such a move would artificially inflate the faith daters put in these background checks, especially when there are so many questions about their value. True.com is of course the most prominent user of background checks and has tried to push such legislation in other states.
Question one involves just how in depth these purported background checks really are. True and others run a background check that looks for sexual crimes and marriage status, but stops there, a search that in many circles is not considered worthy of the moniker 'background check'. Question two involves just how accurate these background checks of sexual crimes can be when the infrastructure for reporting such crimes nationwide simply does not exist.
As a way of ensuring that someone who says they are single actually is, these types of background checks can be useful and may perhaps make a potential liar think twice before deceiving daters on a particular dating site. However, legislation would put far more weight on these types of checks than is warranted by their scope, duping consumers into thinking that they are cure-alls for the types of lies and deception seen just as often in offline dating as in its online counterpart.
Striking down the thought of legislating importance into online dating background checks ultimately serves the consumer and those that do want that extra efforts have True.com and other sites to fill that need.
Posted by eDatingCentral.com Apr 7, 2007 5:58 am
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