Reviews for Data, A Love Story : How I Gamed Online Dating to Meet My Match
Booklist Reviews 2012 December #1
When journalist-turned-consultant Webb ended a serious relationship at age 30, she turned to online dating to seek her match and avoid horrible setups arranged by her mother. The men she meets on JDate and Match.com prove to be disappointments. They are disingenuous about their physical appearance, they stick her with the tab, and one turns out to be married. Rather than being discouraged, however, Webb combines her investigative skills with her mathematical savvy to better understand how online dating sites work, and who is having the most success with them. She creates several male profiles in order to check out how other women are marketing themselves, particularly the women whose profiles pop up right away, indicating they're getting the highest volume of responses. Once she's gathered her data, Webb applies it to her own profile, changing the wording and redoing her pictures. Webb's clever and inventive experiment, as well as her success story, will be inspiring and eye-opening for anyone who has ever turned to one of the many popular online dating sites in search of love. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.
Kirkus Reviews 2012 November #2
A female journalist/digital media strategist's wry account of how she used mathematics, data analysis and spreadsheets to find the love of her life. Time was running out for 30-something Webb, who desperately wanted to get married and start a family. So she followed the advice of friends and family and tried online dating "to cast a very wide net" and find "the perfect man." Unfortunately, her computer matches were less than inspiring. Some blatantly misrepresented themselves; others were bores, dorks, egotists, mooches, sex fiends or married men on the make. Webb finally realized that she wasn't getting better responses for two reasons: her own lack of specificity about what she wanted in a potential spouse and the absence of a personal system to help her determine which matches would make good dates. She developed a list of 72 desirable characteristics, which she then boiled down to 25, ranked and numerically weighted according to importance. Webb then went to work revamping her online profile in order to get the most responses from the best possible matches for her. To get the data she needed to do this, she created several profiles for fictional men with the characteristics she sought. All of the females who responded seemed shallow, but Webb also saw that they were among the most popular with the most attractive and successful men. Then she had a flash of insight: Regardless of their real-world accomplishments, "these women were approachable [and] seemed easy to date." Armed with this knowledge, the author recreated her online image to market herself as "the sexy-girl-next-door" rather than a competitive, neurosis-stricken workaholic. Ultimately, she got her man, "a storybook wedding" and the longed-for child. But some readers may wonder how the things Webb "discovers" about successful dating through her research could have eluded her in the first place. Pleasant, geeky fun. Copyright Kirkus 2012 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
Publishers Weekly Reviews 2012 November #3
In this insightful, funny journey through online dating, Webb, a compulsively organized journalist and digital strategist, tries to find the perfect man by putting herself in his shoes. After the end of a relationship, Webb develops a 1,500-point ranking system for her ideal partner, but she can't seem to find him. In an elaborate masquerade, she creates a fake JDate profile--as a man--to discover what kind of woman seduces Mr. Right. Webb's advice for dating both on and offline is insightful (and data-driven), and her descriptions of meddling family members, bad dates, and worse profiles are hilarious and familiar to anyone who's tried dating online. Some story elements feel slightly misplaced and glossed over--her mother's illness is a confusing plot thread, and there are too many details about George Michael. While some of her best advice is stashed in an appendix, her tips for creating and managing an online dating profile are trenchant. The story of her own experiment is funny, brutally honest, and inspirational even to the most hopeless dater. Agent: Suzanne Gluck and Erin Malone, William Morris Endeavor. (Jan. 31) [Page ]. Copyright 2012 PWxyz LLC