Most people have Facebook accounts nowadays, though in my experience, even the most avid Facebook users would shy away from using the site for strict online dating. When it comes to hooking up with complete strangers, rather than friends of friends, people still prefer the relative anonymity of dating sites. But let’s face it, the Facebook / online dating crossover isn’t just about the things you do by choice. Once you reveal enough about yourself to your new online beau or belle, they’re going to be rushing to Facebook and checking out your profile. Some may even ask you for your Facebook details, making it hard to refuse. This opens up a whole can of worms, from having your Facebook profile embarrass you with bad photos to giving personal information out to someone who may turn out to be a freaky stalker. You want to make sure your Facebook is ready for this onslaught in every possible way.
Here are 5 things you can do to make this integration smoother.
1. Watch your profile pic.
You’ve gone all out with your dating site pics, showing off your best side, but your Facebook pic is a blurry, unflattering shot of you pulling faces while drunk at a party. FAIL. No matter what you do, your Facebook profile pic will be seen by anyone looking at your profile, so if you’re trying to get dates, make sure it’s also up to scratch.
2. Make everything private
You can make most things on your Facebook profile private to anyone who isn’t already your friend or your friends’ friend. You then have the choice of who to share your information with, rather than the choice being forced upon you. Just go into your privacy settings and make sure nothing it set to “everyone”.
3. Control your tags
You don’t want last night’s drunken hen or stag night shots popping up on your profile when you’re trying to charm your future husband or wife. Luckily, Facebook lets you decide who can see these in your privacy settings. Choose “only friends” or even “only me” and the problem is solved.
4. Stop random people from searching for you on Facebook
In the “connecting on Facebook” section of your privacy settings, you can control who can search for you on the site. Setting it to everyone means any random person can look you up. This may mean more friends from your forgotten past, but it could also mean people you don’t know very well can look up your profile. If you reduce the permissions to “friends of friends” you may well lose out on some friends (like Facebook tells you), but you may win more peace of mind.
5. Make a special group for your online dating friends
It may be more convenient for you to add your new online dating buddies to Facebook than continue chatting to them on the dating site, especially if they seem fun and friendly. If you do, consider creating a new friends group and adding them all to that. This way you can control what they see more easily (for example, the aforementioned tagged photos) and collectively avoid them on Facebook chat if you’re not up to being sociable with people who are not close friends. The various privacy options all have a “custom” option, where you can hide stuff from a particular person or group.No tags for this post.