The OKCupid Form Message Wall of Shame

Everyone knows that dating, especially online dating, is a numbers game. The most successful people in the dating world engage in a LOT of trial and error, and most guys on online dating sites have to send out a high volume of messages to girls before they get any responses, let alone any agreements to meet in real life.

To contend with the time-consuming task of sending out a bunch of messages, some gentlemen have taken to spamming ladies' profiles with generic form messages. In addition to being bad form, this gesture is also a waste of time, as any even moderately dimwitted woman is able to sniff out a generic online message (This isn't 1997).

Unfortunately, few men realize that this behavior is less-than-ideal. I would like to change that by posting real-world examples online form messages here, in what shall now be known as the OKCupid Form Message Wall of Shame.

My goal is not to belittle those who sent these messages (believe me, they're 100 times more date-worthy than your not-so-gentle author), but to startle form-message senders into seeing a potential error in their methods of approach. You see, if one wants to take the form message route, there are much, much better ways to go about it.

Let's have a look at the bland, the creative, and the downright sad, shall we?

See How You Torture Her??

Bodacious Blonde would rather repeatedly hit herself in the head with apples than read your boring form messages. BAM. BAM. BAM.
Bodacious Blonde would rather repeatedly hit herself in the head with apples than read your boring form messages. BAM. BAM. BAM. | Source

Classic and Boring Form Messages

Most low-efficacy form messages sent by OKCupid dudes include the following two elements:

  • Shallow flattery
  • A call to action (be it a reply or in-person meeting)

These are the easiest generic messages to spot, and are also so overwhelmingly boring. It is difficult to read them without slipping into a coma. What makes them particularly insulting is that when the recipient is not "beautiful" or "pretty" as the shallow flattery suggests, she has the added disquietude of knowing that she is not only being lied to up-front, but that those lying to her don't have the time to even send her a custom-made message.

I'm just saying this to point out to gentlemen hoping to make a way in the world of online dating so that they don't anger potential dates. But I digress! Let us have a look at some examples:

I'm a pretty blunt person, so l will get to the point. I think your beautiful, and would love to get to know you better. If that sounds good get back to me...


Sexy Sunglasses Lady is NOT impressed.
Sexy Sunglasses Lady is NOT impressed. | Source

FESS UP!

Have you ever resorted to form messages on an online dating site?

See results without voting

Failing-To-Be-Provocative Form Messages

Some gentlemen writing form messages make a point of being less conventional and more provocative by sending off generic, but creative missives. These are somewhat better than using the same old "you're pretty, let's chat" platitudes, but they're still form messages, and should not be sent. Here are some examples:

If I made you feel like a little girl just by my presence alone would you consider that a positive or negative?

No comment on this one.

Hello. I'm a comedian and I'm going to try something new right here right now.
I want to solicit a subject or a reference for a joke. I will write said joke, perform it three to five times and tell you the results.
Of course you can decline to offer up said premise. That is okay. But then the universe would never have that joke, which would be a shame.

Sort of intriguing, but still generic... and also a bit perplexing.

Good job you won... after extensively analyzing your profile... you are the lucky girl I chose to get to know me better... But seriously you have a beautiful smile that melts the heart and penetrates the soul. im gonna put you in this new colgate commercial that im making, when can you start.

This may lead recipients to view the sender as a bit... self-involved. Not an ideal first impression to make.

"Nice try, but so long sucker..." says that hot airline stewardess you FAILED to impress with your friendly but generic message.
"Nice try, but so long sucker..." says that hot airline stewardess you FAILED to impress with your friendly but generic message. | Source

Friendly But Still Generic Form Messages

I'm personally quite fond of online messages with a friendly, informal, cheerful tone, but adding said tone to a generic message doesn't suddenly make that generic message OK:

OMG you live in San Francisco!!! Me too!!!! What a co-incidence!!!! ;)
What did you do on new year's eve?

From this I can indeed deduce that the sender might have a friendly disposition, and was thoughtful enough to include a slightly specific question in his form message, but I unfortunately have no evidence that he took the time to glean even one personal detail from my profile, and am therefore less likely to reply- cheeriness and all.

Menacing Stepford Wife wants to wipe your sorry ass of the face of the earth.
Menacing Stepford Wife wants to wipe your sorry ass of the face of the earth. | Source

What's Your Response Rate

Roughly what percentage of the online dating messages you send out get responses?

See results without voting

Downright Sad Form Messages

Some form messages sent to me on OKCupid are so poorly composed that they make me want to cry- not only because I wasted seconds of my life reading them, but because I know that the dudes sending them must be getting so little action. It's tragic!

Perhaps by sharing these embarrassing little ditties, I can encourage people to at least edit their form messages before sending them out, if they really, absoutely MUST resort to such de-personalized measures.

With no further ado, I present you with the lowest of the low:

how are you?

Though I would have liked to have thought that this is widely understood, sending over messages like this is not likely to illicit interesting responses. As any parent of a teenager might tell you, such questions, if answered at all, typically get nothing better than a "fine" in response. And what sort of achievement is that? Congratulations, you have managed to replicate one of modern society's most meaningless exchanges.

hey

Just when I think nothing can get worse than "how are you?" I discover that, sadly.... it can. Perhaps people revert to these messages because they assume online dating sites are simply digital replicas of, oh, say, a bar, where it might (emphasis on the might part) be enough to start a conversation.

Please, please do not send these over. Give the recipient of your online missives something to work with. Please.

Blonde Preferred By Gentlemen is.... actually kind of amused.
Blonde Preferred By Gentlemen is.... actually kind of amused. | Source

RARE EXCEPTIONS

There are some rare instances in which generic messages are SO GREAT that it doesn't matter that they're generic.

Here is one strong example:

Good maiden,

I am writing to cordially invite you to an internet get-together box social at the esteemed inbox of yours truly. While there will be singing, dancing and merriment there is a distinct possibility of knaves. Accordingly, you should bring your most rapier wit and no less than three pairs of clean socks, in the inevitable event they are blown cleanly from your body by the sheer magnitude of my sesquipedalian sudden rhyme battles.

Potentially yours,

-Lord high chancellor of the realms, mars, the 7-11 down the street and your mother

If you're human, that probably brought you to your knees.

I therefore end this overview with the concession that, in some cases, even non-customized form messages can be awesome. Sigh... my battle to make the world black and white is once again lost.

Customized form messages? Pretty In Pink Headphone Gal likes the sound of that!
Customized form messages? Pretty In Pink Headphone Gal likes the sound of that! | Source

There is a better way!

Let's be honest with ourselves. If we resort to generic form messages, our online dating missives are likely to be met with... crickets.

We can avoid these low response rates (while still maintaining a high level of efficiency) by using customizable templates: mad lib-like messages that allow us to fill in the blanks, making it seem as though those messages were designed from scratch for each unique recipient.

For some tips on making efficient but savvy online dating form messages, check out my special video guide.

And good hunting!

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Comments 17 comments

Outbound Dan profile image

Outbound Dan 4 years ago from Niagara Falls, NY

Ahh the complexities of digital mating rituals. Makes one yearn for the old days, when our parents simply arranged our marriages - and we liked it. Fantastically witty!


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 4 years ago from Baltimore, MD

I really hope some guys read this hub because I can't stand the "hey, what's up?" or "hey, how's it going?" or just plain, "hey!" messages anymore. Seriously, does every sentence have to start with hey? I am now taking a break from OKCupid and POF because, hey, I can't take it anymore! Voted up and useful!


Enelle Lamb profile image

Enelle Lamb 4 years ago from Canada's 'California'

Too funny - I read your title and had to pop over for a read. Sooooo... how are you?

Sorry, Simone, I'll resist next time. At least none of them asked your sign :D


GypsyFootedWoman profile image

GypsyFootedWoman 4 years ago

I think the Lord High Chancellor of the Realms...and your mother...has a well deserve high 5 coming his way!

As for the rest of them, oy vey! You portrayed their ridiculousness perfectly.


Theresa Mullins 4 years ago

I couldn't help but read your article because I can relate. I get A LOT of the generic messages. I get the "Hey Gorgeous!" and "Hi. How are yous?" I just delete them them. If they can't take the time write me a real message that is letting me know in some way that they even read my profile instead of just looking at my picture then I don't have the time to respond.


Simone Smith profile image

Simone Smith 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Gotta love those arranged marriages, Outbound Dan! I'm hoping they make comeback, at this point.

Hahaa, I'm glad I'm not the only one, Jeannieinabottle! That break sounds MARVELOUS.

Heheheee Enelle, you do make a good point with that one.

Yep, GypsyFootedWoman, gotta hand it to the Lord High Chancellor.

And that's a pretty solid approach, Theresa Mullins. I started out by calling dudes on it and suggesting alternate approaches, but then I realized what an ass I sounded like. Deleting makes much more sense!


rls8994 profile image

rls8994 4 years ago from Mississippi

Loved this article! I have been divorced for about 6 months now and just getting back into the dating thing and its really comical. I get those "hey" messages all the time. I mean what are you supposed to say to that besides "hey" lol. I have also found out there are a lot of crazies on these dating sites! Great article and voted up!


Sheila Lee profile image

Sheila Lee 4 years ago from Canada

Simone, yet ANOTHER great hub, girl! Love it! How about the ones that send "hey sexy" or "you are so gorgeous" or just plain jane ones like that. Obviously those guys don't have two sticks to rub together in their heads. LOL


Simone Smith profile image

Simone Smith 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

I know, right rls8994? WHAT DO THEY EXPECT??? And while I personally mind the form messages, I don't mind the crazies at all. Love 'em! They're where all the lulz come from.

And thanks Sheila Lee!! Oh, the "hey sexy" ones are pretty awful!! They make me feel downright bad, since they must be getting so little action.


danielabram 4 years ago

I gave up on OKCupid after 48 hours. The site is unhealthy to both men and women. Too much is judged on the lighting of their photo and not the content of their character.


Colby 4 years ago

Holy quadricycles batman I am gonna try that one amazing one...

"Good maiden,

I am writing to cordially invite you to an internet get-together box social at the esteemed inbox of yours truly. While there will be singing, dancing and merriment there is a distinct possibility of knaves. Accordingly, you should bring your most rapier wit and no less than three pairs of clean socks, in the inevitable event they are blown cleanly from your body by the sheer magnitude of my sesquipedalian sudden rhyme battles.

Potentially yours,

-Lord high chancellor of the realms, mars, the 7-11 down the street and your mother"


Simone Smith profile image

Simone Smith 4 years ago from San Francisco Author

Colby, I don't think it would be possible for anyone to turn down a message like that. So awesome.


rmcleve profile image

rmcleve 4 years ago from Woodbridge, VA

Awesome! These compare in some ways with the responses and inquiries I receive at the hands of the OKCupid gods. I included a special addendum to my profile requesting all who deem it proper to share measurements of their nether regions to keep on clicking. It helps! Apparently, smart guys like seeing women who know the word "nether," too. Win, win!


MzChaos profile image

MzChaos 4 years ago from Indianapolis

Enjoyed the article...haven't been to okcupid in years, I guess nothing has changed with it. I am a sci-fi / fantasy freak and loved the high chancellors invitation...you are correct, that would be hard to not respond to....Humor, always, works, well....


adrienne2 profile image

adrienne2 4 years ago from Atlanta

Hi Simone, I saw your OKcupid hub, and had to stop by. I get so tired of form messages I do not know what to do. I had to laugh when I saw the title of this hub. And those fellows who send out messages think someone will believe they are only sending it to that one receiver. Ha! It really gets me when call me honey, or sweetie, oh, oh better yet when it begins with Hello my dear! I say oh lordy not another one. Voted funny!


angelo bell profile image

angelo bell 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

Damn, this might make a person want to stay in a boring marriage in an effort to avoid the massive boredom "looking for Mr/Mrs Good Bar" LOL. Great article, very timely for me too :)


Julie K Henderson profile image

Julie K Henderson 20 months ago

Bravo! This article made me laugh out loud. Thank you for sharing.

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