carol6 is no longer a Zoosk user. Maybe she found someone on Zoosk.
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Mastering Online Dating: Part Nine
Mastering Online Dating: For the Good of the Article
Despite getting mad at Zoosk and women (not in that order), I started to feel I could get consistent results. But still, replies were distressingly rare. I sent some messages before a class, and kept my laptop open during the lesson.
"Hey!" I said to my students, "Some girl wrote to me!" I was supposed to be teaching them business English or something, but this was more important. I could only see the first few words of the message - 'Thanks for your mail'. I'd have to read the rest when I got home.
"Oh, tell us everything," said my studes. So I read the previous eight chapters of this guide to them, doing sexy voices for the hot girls and a high-pitched squeak to mimic Cecile. The students were rapt. Halfway through, another woman added me as a friend on Zoosk. I'd be able to chat with her. The students were just as excited as me. Then it was time to go home. "Andrew, that was much better than the normal lessons."
When I got home, I tried to read the full message the woman had sent me. Zoosk said, 'To access this feature you must be a member. Click here to purchase membership.' What, reading mails is a feature?
No matter, I'd just chat to my new Zoosk friend. I tried to open the chat window. Surprise, surprise, I had to be a member for that, too.
Membership cost 30 francs a month (or more; I was too furious to write it down).
Finally, having wasted about eight hours (cumulatively) of my life perving at women on Zoosk and creating elaborate fantasies about them, I realised why changes to your profile have to be approved by a human - it's to make sure you don't put any info in your profile that could let people contact you. Thinking about it, it struck me that they certainly moderate messages you send, too, removing any contact info you try to sneak in. So you HAVE to pay them money. They've got a complete information lockdown. There's no way around it.
So how did that one girl add me on Facebook? She didn't. It was a random Facebook add unconnected to my online dating project.
The Zoosk site is amazingly well designed to let you get obsessed with multiple women before letting you in on the important news that you don't get anything on Zoosk for free.
I finally made myself do some research on Zoosk. I probably should have done that in the beginning, but I'm not the kind of person who reads instruction manuals.
A google search revealed millions of unhappy online daters complaining about being scammed by Zoosk, non-existent customer service, and sharp practice. A comment I read on one website suggested that many women on Zoosk are bots (phantom women who send out fake messages and flirts), which are used to sucker men into getting subscriptions.
And despite all this, I was still considering getting a one-month subscription. The first woman who wrote to me had written again, and I really wanted to know what she'd said and chat to my Zoosk friends. Yes, friends, for now I had two.
I asked my online dating expert Cecile for advice. She suggested I pay the money 'for the good of the article'. Grumbling, I decided to bite the bullet. When I logged in again to sign up, it said I had one friend.
I used to have two. The girl who sent me loads of messages had dumped me! And I couldn't find her anywhere on the site. What's the deal?
I finally found evidence of her existence:
I literally exploded with rage, then re-formed into more or less the same shape as I was before. I hated this project! I wished it were dead!
Fuck you, Zoosk! You'll never get a penny from me.
Next - OK Cupid (and the secret of online dating).