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British singles spend more than £168 million looking for love online

Nearly 30% of all relationships are formed online in 2012

The Brits have crossed a milestone in the online dating sector, according to the annual study published by industry experts “LeadingDatingSites.co.uk”. In 2011, people from the UK spent more than £9.6 million more than in the previous year on online dating. The industry is also a hit in Europe: nearly a third of people who meet each other for love now do so online.

The British online dating market grew a full 6% on the previous year – in 2011, turnover stood at £168.5 million. This huge increase is due largely to aggressive advertising on the part of leading online dating sites. “Premium-priced quality platforms which have well-honed audiences and good customer service are the ones who get ahead in all sectors”, says Danielle Baker from LeadingDatingSites, summarizing the survey. “Single customers are willing to pay more for better service”.

Online dating is a booming industry around the world, and European singles have caught on, becoming the sector’s largest audience. In 2012, nearly thirty percent of all relationships in the EU are formed online, and the British are holding the fort. Every month, around 6.2 million users log on to dating sites, and a further 2.7 million take part in ‘casual dating’, looking for erotic encounters. At the same time, Britain hosts about 50 online dating sites which have now crossed the 100,000 member mark.

Less pricey, but somewhat more superficial sites for 18-30 year olds have become available to those looking for casual dates and a distraction from the Facebook environment. They are also available as Smartphone Apps and offer features such as location-based real-time search functions for spontaneous encounters.

Download the study as a PDF
http://www.leadingdatingsites.co.uk/press/online-dating-market-2011-2012-uk.pdf

Online Dating UK infographic available here as a JPG
http://www.leadingdatingsites.co.uk/press/infographic-online-dating-2012-uk.jpg

Full press release as PDF download
http://www.leadingdatingsites.co.uk/press/pr-online-dating-market-2011-2012-uk.pdf

About www.leadingdatingsites.co.uk

“UK’s Leading Dating Sites” is an independent observer of the British online dating industry. Those looking for love online will find results pointing them to leading singles’ portals and tips for online flirting. “LeadingDatingSites.co.uk“ is part of the German Metaflake network, which operates from Cologne in 12 different countries.
Dating For Love – Guide To The Best Dating Sites On The Internet, Cupid At Work

Is Your Relationship Low-Key Or On the Down Low?

I had the pleasure of being a guest on the R & B Podcast hosted by Lincoln Anthony Blades of the popular This Is Your Conscience blog. We had a really interesting laid back conversation (as always) chopping it up about everything from event planning to my thoughts on threesomes (your cue to check it out).  In the midst of our spirited conversation we touched on the topic of low-key relationships. The podcast was recorded on Saturday and the topic reverberated in my head for the entire weekend. This was after an exciting whirlwind of cocktails, fresh fruits and other distractions.

I learned during our dialogue that keeping relationships low-key is typically a male preference. Low key for the purpose of our discussion today is simply a preference for intimate encounters with minimal to no social media attention operating on a need to know basis. Down low refers to this classic R Kelly Isley Brothers track.

At this stage in my life and for a good portion of my dating life I’ve always preferred the Beyonce and Jay-Z approach, dropping little hints here and there, teasing, but never really getting into the raw dog details of my romantic relationships at any one time. They really had the media twitching for a good minute didn’t they?!

Is Your Relationship Low-Key Or On the Down Low?

I have stories, every day I work hard to create them believe me, but I respect any one I chose to date and carefully select what to share and what to keep under wraps.

9 times out of ten women are uncomfortable with low-key relationship because they feel as though a man is trying to hide them from the world. The fear is that they may end up in that side chick role, heading for a “just bag the face” demotion. I understand the concern and admittedly I’ve been in relationships that were not really relationships because of this factor *sigh* however this assumption is usually far-fetched especially if the man has not said, “I’m not looking for a relationship” or, “we just chillin”.

My reason for wanting a low-key relationship is so that he and I can build a foundation based upon respect and intimacy on our own terms before we ever publicly announce the relationship. The minute a relationship goes “viral” is the minute the strength of it will be tested and generally speaking men seem to understand this more than women *kanye shrugs*

Get your weight up before the Facebook relationship status change, before the parental introductions, before talks of the titles and rings. Who are we? What do we stand for? What will we NOT stand for? Do we respect each other?

It’s up to us (yes that includes you!) to take initiative at maintaining intimacy and therefore a balanced level of privacy in our love lives. Especially in world where people are murdered and abused over Facebook beef- Really though?! That’s enough of my two cents, what is your take on low-key relationships? Are you more comfortable with the red carpet approach or would you rather keep the good news to yourself?

P.S It’s also important to understand the difference between low key and down low. Skipping out of town and hiding from your partner’s spouse or significant other in crusty motels in seedy parts of town is not low key it means you’re on the side-If that’s what tickles your fancy by all means happy hiding.

‘Battle of The Sexes’ 

Dating For Love – Guide To The Best Dating Sites On The Internet, Cupid At Work

FROM A MALE PERSPECTIVE: SHOULD YOU KEEP PHOTOS OF YOUR EX?

By Anthony Jerrod

Mutual breakups are as rare as natural black diamonds of Brazil. In most cases, one person is the frigid heartbreaker, while the other warmly laments over the broken union and the good times.  Certainly, there are individuals who have no problems with leaving the worn baggage of their previous relationships behind and upgrading to someone who will really love, cherish, encourage, respect and potentially walk down the aisle with them.

Conversely, there are some people who simply don’t want to let go of their ex-lover and would welcome the opportunity to remain friends, although there would likely be more pain and shattered promises that fill the earthly canvas like glass.  It is not atypical for such individuals to keep memories of their past lover around their homes, on their smartphones and social media pages and even nostalgically ponder what they once had.  Now, there are many things that you can do at the same damn time, but being in love with your new admirer while holding on to the unnecessary chains of your previous relationship can lead to disaster.

Is it okay to keep photographs of your ex-boyfriend when your love is under new management?  If you ask me, absolutely not!  Throw them away!

Several proponents have concurred that there is nothing wrong with retaining snapshots of ex-boyfriends. They believe that it is all about trust, and their new “boo” shouldn’t feel jealous or threatened if he is confident. And also, who has time to go through old photo albums (online and old-school) to weed out photos of past flames? Those are fair opinions.

Look, there aren’t too many men who would be cool with flipping through your iPhone or Droid and discovering that you have stored pictures, especially naked or half-naked photos of your ex-boyfriend.  If your new man is really putting everything that he can into the relationship–emotionally, spiritually, financially, and mentally–and you still have electronic and hard copy images of your last “boo” hanging around your home, there is a really good chance that he would be hurt. Although certain men would not admit that they would be insecure or torn inside by things of this nature, they just might be.

Let’s be real, how would you feel if the tables were turned?  Would you be fine with finding the “dime” that he used to date in his cellular phone?  Would you maintain your cool if you found explicit photos of his beautiful ex-lover in his bedroom, especially one from a past long-term relationship?

If you are really over your ex-boyfriend, do you need to see a picture of him every day or on a consistent basis, especially when you are in a new, serious relationship? And if you don’t look at them, do you need them at all? To cover all grounds, there are certain situations where photos may include shared children, which would be acceptable to most gentlemen to keep in the children’s room. And group photos with friends or family just might be fair game too. But if this is not the case, then it is essential to achieve closure on intimate relationships of the past to ensure that your new path is full of blessings and favor.  If you don’t want to throw away photos of your ex, it would be nice to store them in a box in an attic that you can look at 20 years from now when it shouldn’t matter to you or your future husband.  But at second thought, why would you and your spouse ever want to look at them?

FROM A MALE PERSPECTIVE: SHOULD YOU KEEP PHOTOS OF YOUR EX?

Dating For Love – Guide To The Best Dating Sites On The Internet, Cupid At Work

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Girl’s Best Friend: You Should Thank Mr. Wrong

By Nathan Hale Williams

Girl's Best Friend: You Should Thank Mr. Wrong

One of the biggest obstacles to having a good dating life is trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. All too often, I see both women and men attempting to make a relationship work that is just not meant to be. Then many of my sister-friends get down and out when that relationship doesn’t work out. I think they should be thanking Mr. Wrong because he made room for Mr. Right.

Case in point, one my dear sister-friends was dating a guy in the fall 2011. A blind man could see that they weren’t right for each. Physically, the guy was extremely attractive, but his attributes stopped there. He was boring, not so bright and lacked a sense of humor. On the contrary, my sister-friend has an ebullient personality and is highly intelligent. Talking to her is like a sunny day while talking to him was like watching paint dry.

Following her inevitable break-up from, “Mr. Hell No,” she was sad for almost three weeks. Instead of coddling her, I laughed at her and scolded her because she wasn’t really missing anything more than the idea of having a man – wrong or not. She then followed him with a string of guys that showed little to no interest in her by evidence of their word and actions. To my sister-friend’s credit, describing it sounds much worse than it actually was, but it was baffling for me because she is an outstanding woman.

A month ago, we met up for drinks and she brought with her the new guy she had been dating. Skeptical, I dreaded meeting yet another one of her “M.W.’s.” To my surprise, it was love at first sight…for me. He was an exceptional human being, attractive, smart, witty and all of those laundry list of things you look for in a partner. More importantly, he was clearly into her and she was visibly into him.

We ended up hanging out all night and I thoroughly enjoyed not only being around him, but around them as a couple. It seemed to click in the way relationships should. We’ve all been around those two people that seem to be meant for each other and we’ve been around those two people who should never speak again. It is why I don’t understand why we can’t tell the difference in our own love lives.

Last week, she called and said those four words: “I found Mr. Right.” The honeymoon had continued. And, after seeing them together, I believed her. I’m exuberantly happy for her and I have a feeling it’s just going to get better. They’re already talking about marriage, which is a good sign from a guy. I always say, if a guy wants to marry you, he will talk about it rather quickly.

That string of bad relationships that didn’t work out was a blessing to my sister-friend. Had she been stuck in those dead end relationships, the ending of which seemed catastrophic at the time, she’d never had met her “M.R.” So, the next time a bad relationship ends, make sure you thank Mr. Wrong — and keep it moving toward Mr. Right.

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Dating For Love – Guide To The Best Dating Sites On The Internet, Cupid At Work

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Rihanna May Be Dating NY Knick JR Smith

By  Mack Rawden

Rumor has it pop star Rihanna has set her sights on a new man and surprise surprise, he’s not a quiet homebody. The dude in question is twenty-six-year-old New York Knicks star JR Smith. The shooting guard first rose to prominence in 2004 when he won the Most Valuable Player Award at the McDonald’s All-American Game. He declared for the draft not long after and went eighteenth overall to the Hornets. Moments of brilliance and charges of shooting too much followed, but nonetheless, Smith has carved out a reputation as a reliable scorer and a bit of a ladies man.

Earlier this year, he was fined twenty-five thousand dollars for posting this picture (NSFW) of model Tahiry’s butt on Twitter, and now he’s apparently drawn the attention of Rihanna. According to The New York Daily News, the pop star and the ball player have been enjoying each other’s company for weeks, and they reportedly hung out and flirted over the weekend in Miami just a day after he was arrested for driving without a valid license.

Given the lack of time these two have spent together, it’s unclear whether this relationship is one of fun and mutual attraction or full of potential for something greater, but we should know by whether they continue hanging out together or not. If they do, Pop Blend sends out its well-wishes to the pair. If they don’t, maybe they’ll each go for someone a little bit less famous the next time around.

Rihanna May Be Dating NY Knick JR Smith

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A Safer Way to Flirt With That Sexy Guy Across the Room

By Charli Penn

A Safer Way to Give That Cute Guy Across the Room Your Number

You’re single, looking for love and you know exactly what you like in a man – you just can’t seem to find it. You’re not into things like Facebook hookups or blind dates but you’re open to dating a non-crazy guy. (The last one you gave your card too never stopped calling.) Are we describing you to a tee? If so, Rachel DeAlto’s dating FlipMe meet up method, which is getting lots of buzz lately, could be your new favorite way to flirt.

Here’s how it works: You join and setup an online profile sharing only what you want to. You receive your FlipMe cards in the mail that feature fun pick up lines and conversation starters and your unique custom profile info on them. The next time you make eye contact with a gorgeous guy and you’re intrigued, you give him a card. If he likes you he can find you on FlipMe.com, but if he’s a little too weird for your tastes, he’ll never have your real information. “We’re all about having fun,” says DeAlto. “That’s our focus. We’re putting the fun back in flirting.” DeAlto says it’s a safe and simple way for a woman to approach a man. We checked in with the dating expert known online as “The Flirt Expert” to find how FlipMe and sights like that can fit into the modern woman’s dating world.

So, there’s no way the guy you give the card to can find you if you don’t want him to?
DEALTO: If he goes on the site, he sees your profile, and it’s entirely up to you what you want to put on there. None of it is really typical online dating profile information – it’s more of a conversation starter. All of the questions are based on your personality. He just sees your picture and those answers, and then there’s a form he can use if he wants to connect with you – similar to sending a Facebook message. It’s kind of like a middleman vetting system. If you don’t like the person, they never know who you are or what your first name is or any of that type of information. Whereas, if you give out a business card, they can contact you at work or find you on Facebook. They have all of your information already.

What inspired you to create this flirting method?
DEALTO: I find that a lot of women have had issues with giving out their business cards and their phone numbers and email address. They’ve ultimately had to change it because they’ve had issues with people they shouldn’t have given it to having that access. The other issue – and I’ve had this happen to me before – is that you give out your card because you’re flirting, but they don’t get that because it is a business card.

What type of women would feel good about using this method?
DEALTO: There’s definitely a confidence factor to it, and a fun one. You really can’t take yourself too serious with this. A lot of single moms like to use it. They want to protect their kids, their family, and ultimately their information. Also, women who can’t do online dating, but do want to meet people, use it to kind of protect their identity as well – like women who don’t have a public Facebook page.

Do you feel that modern dating is headed in this direction?
DEALTO: I’m all for women taking the initiative and going after what they want, but I do love the chase. I think even in the modern era, that’s where something like FlipMe kind of comes in. It gives them the green light to pursue you.

What if she feels sort-of desperate going about it this way?
DEALTO: It’s just like when online dating first came out. Fifteen years ago you couldn’t get anyone to admit that they went on a computer to find a date. I think part of it is just adjusting to new ways. The response from the men that get them has been great. Whether they get a card or a smile, they eat it up. They love it. They like having a clue that you’re into them.

Read more:

Dating For Love – Guide To The Best Dating Sites On The Internet, Cupid At Work

Lindsay Lohan swears off dating as she prepares for new film, reports say

LindsayLohancourt.jpg

March 29, 2012: Lindsay Lohan, right, embraces her attorney, Shawn Chapman Holley after a progress report on her probation for theft charges at Los Angeles Superior Court.

Lindsay Lohan has sworn herself off dating as she prepares to play Elizabeth Taylor in a movie about the late screen legend’s life, TMZ reported Monday.

The 25-year-old, who completed her probation relating to DUI and theft offenses last week, said she wants to avoid any relationships or emotional attachments for the time being, sources said.

Instead of dating, the actress wants to spend her time reading the script for the upcoming Lifetime movie, named “Liz and Dick,” and focusing on the role.

The “Mean Girls” star is said to be keen to make a comeback following her recent struggles with the law and does not want a relationship to get in the way.

Lohan’s legal woes began in 2007 with back-to-back DUI charges and escalated in 2010, when she spent 14 days in jail after a missed progress report hearing, as well as skipped alcohol education classes.

While still on probation, Lohan was charged with the theft of a necklace last year, to which she pleaded no contest.

However, after going under house arrest last summer and having several compliance issues in the fall, Lohan finally began to turn things around.

Read more: 

Dating For Love

Nerve.com Launches Algorithm-Free Online Dating Site

By Claire Gordon Anyone who has crafted a message on OkCupid knows that online dating is still a very unnatural act. You scan the stranger’s profile, wittily riff off of their listed interests, insert a few choice questions, and acknowledge how weird the whole thing is (using the words “sorry,” “apologize,” and “awkward” in your first message ups the likelihood of reply). Nerve.com hopes to make this whole experience less stilted, and on Wednesday launched its new love portal, Nerve Dating. It isn’t Nerve.com’s first foray into online matchmaking. Nerve Personals were also intended to “energize the world of online dating” over a decade ago. Rufus Griscom, who co-founded the site, told the New York Press then that on Nerve you’d “be able to go online and say, ‘I’m looking for someone who loves Faulkner, hates their mother…” It was “literate smut” for the affluent and college-educated lonely heart. But the internet has changed in the past ten years, and Nerve is apparently trying to change with it. The new site has no pleading personals, no questionnaires, no algorithms, according to the New York Times’ “Bits” blog. Nerve Dating takes the hint from Twitter and Facebook, and allows potential romancers to break the ice through a flowing stream of public updates. You can go onto the page “What did you do last night?” and see if someone’s yesterday strikes your fancy. In the “Opinions” section, you can check out other users’ thoughts on culture, sex and dating, or other soul-stripping questions, like “The Ghostbuster I most relate to is…” And if you want to message someone, it’ll cost you $20 a month. Sean Mills, the CEO of Nerve, told the Times that the fee serves as a filter that “benefits everyone on the site.” Nerve Dating isn’t the first matchmaking site to integrate social networking features. That honor in fact goes to OkCupid, which allowed users to write journal entries, create quizzes, and instant message prospective paramours. Many dating sites have followed. Zoosk, which started as a Facebook app, is run exactly like a social network, and took home $90 million last year. Heartbroker lets you set up your Facebook friends. Many have pursued the dream of making online dating less awkward. Grouper sets up three girls and three boys with info gleaned from their Facebook profiles, based on the logic that a “social club” is less potentially horrifying than a blind date. On Grindr, users meet each other based entirely on physical proximity. So your message doesn’t communicate, “I’m really into you.” It means only, “I’m here, you’re here, what do you say?” In years past, online dating sites vied for domination based on the genius of their algorithms. eHarmony bragged about its 258-question personality test, which is responsible, it claims, for nearly 120 weddings a day. A sociologist devised the algorithm for Perfectmatch.com, while Chemistry.com is founded on an algorithm designed by an anthropologist well-versed in neural chemistry. These websites took on the role traditionally occupied by families, churches, and clubs. When it came to love, they knew better than you. But the younger set is rebelling against this top-down matchmaking and its invisible mechanizations. That could be because the younger generation has been raised on social media, and finds the frozen profiles and secret behind-the-scenes workings of many dating sites uncomfortably old school. The majority of the users on eHarmony, on the other hand, are over 35, and are less likely to be fluent in the ways of the social web. “The story of online dating has become about algorithms and not about having fun with people online,” said Mills. “We’re moving away from the algorithm era into the social era. This is a dating site that reflects how the Web has changed.” Singles in their 20s and early 30s are also often looking for good times more than “the one,” and so prefer the freedom to pick their partners. If these people reach 35, and the instant messages and status updates have failed to garner a true love match, then maybe that they’ll admit defeat, throw up their arms, and surrender themselves to the almighty algorithm, too.

Dating For Love

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