My life has taken a very bizarre turn in the last week. No, I haven’t sworn off meat or become a Hare Krishna (but don’t count that last one out; I’m totally into chanting and hanging out in airports).
What’s happened is that I have gone back to OkCupid. As close followers of my adventures know, I was formerly on OKC, hoping to find a partner, as more of my friends than they would like to admit have done. I took it seriously for a while, but I grew tired with it incredibly fast and left the site out of abject boredom.
You know how it goes, though. Months pass, boredom remains and before you know it, you’re right back at the dating site, telling yourself that you’re just there kill time. That’s where I was, when I received a very interesting email from the OKCupid people.
Woah, people! Freak out. Buttering me up with compliments, then asking me to take on thankless and unpaid responsibilities; OKCupid has become indistinguishable from most of my friends.
I thought it over and decided, while it’s probably not a compliment that a dating site has deemed me as someone they can incorporate into “long-time plans” and trust with responsibilities, that this was an offer I couldn’t pass up. I accepted, and got started on my new adventure as a dating site moderator.
For a long time, I’ve heard horror stories from female friends about insane messages people have sent them, and to be honest, I was kind of looking forward to being the one who would deal with these dudes and ban them from the site. I imagined myself being some kind of a hero, standing up for chivalry and decency.
Let me tell you, the reality has been quite different. The reality has just been me sitting around clicking a “Remove Picture” button as I watch a parade of pictures of people’s actual pets and hypothetical cars and boats fly by. Apparently, posting pictures of things that are not you is against the rules, and moderation for the site is largely discerning whether or not a picture is of the person who’s claiming it’s them. This is not the wild, heroic Knight-Errant type of adventure I thought I was signing up for.
Sincerely, most of what I’ve taken away from this experience is that there are a lot of snitches out there. For a picture to end up in this moderation queue, some normal citizen has to have seen this picture, been peeved that it didn’t follow the code of order, and decided to flag it.
It turns out that, from everything I can tell, “the dark recesses of online dating” is the realization that there are a ton of people out there who actually are pissed off that some girl has a picture of her dog on her account, when THE RULES CLEARLY STATE NO PET PICS!
Ph’nglui mglw’nafh Cthulhu R’lyeh wgah’nagl fhtagn, indeed.