Have we as a culture here in America lost the ability and power of seduction?

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    Apr 01, 2011 5:08 PM GMT
    So I raise this question to the group.

    I was in one of my LGBT center group talks, in which we talked about gay dating, and how the norm is the use of online sites and Grindr, even in the gay capital of the world San Francisco. It seems like people don't want to connect to others in person, or simply don't know how. This is true for the straight world as well.

    Example. I went to a coffee shop in the middle of the Castro with one of my straight co-workers. There was a guy there that I thought was hot, and he was checking me out. I looked at him, he looked at me, I smiled, he smiled, I walked up and introduced myself, and the conversation went from there.

    My co-worker was baffled at the experience, and even asked me how I did it.

    It seemed simple to me, I looked for the social queues that the guy was giving. He obviously thought I was attractive, or there was something horribly disfigured on my face, but I went for the first one.

    It seems that all around the country, even in big cities, everyone bitches and moans about being lonely and single, even when they are all on a crowded bus together! They look for more ways to disconnect with the people around them as opposed to trying to get to know them as human beings.

    What are your thoughts on this? Do you find that people lack the ability to meet and seduce people in public, hence why they rely on online dating and so forth? Or is it just my friends?
  • nubScotty

    Posts: 282

    Apr 01, 2011 8:59 PM GMT
    For me, the idea of meeting someone in public is a foreign idea. I can honestly say I have never approached a guy in public, and have only ever met guys through the internet. This is partly due to a lack of confidence on my part. I've never been approached by a guy at a bar, so I internalize this and view it as if I'm not being approached, why would someone want to be approached by me.

    Plus I think the internet is simply just a far simpler means of meeting someone, you know what you're getting(kinda) and depending on the site what that person is looking for.

    I met the guy I'm currently seeing on Match.com, and if it wasn't for the website we would of never met in a public situation. So I also think the internet allows for the meeting of guys who would of most likely never of met otherwise.

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    Apr 01, 2011 10:09 PM GMT
    SoCalScotty saidFor me, the idea of meeting someone in public is a foreign idea. I can honestly say I have never approached a guy in public, and have only ever met guys through the internet. This is partly due to a lack of confidence on my part. I've never been approached by a guy at a bar, so I internalize this and view it as if I'm not being approached, why would someone want to be approached by me.

    Plus I think the internet is simply just a far simpler means of meeting someone, you know what you're getting(kinda) and depending on the site what that person is looking for.

    I met the guy I'm currently seeing on Match.com, and if it wasn't for the website we would of never met in a public situation. So I also think the internet allows for the meeting of guys who would of most likely never of met otherwise.



    This is exactly what I am talking about lol, is that us youngings dont know how to engage strangers in a public spot and get to know them.

    As for the internet, its not simpler it is safer. It is much easier to take rejection from someone on the net than it is in real life because it isnt in your face. Then again, if you try to force yourself into talking to someone it probably wont work, but people dont know how to read social queues in this day and age.
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    Apr 03, 2011 3:57 PM GMT
    Ima bumbin this because Im interested in learning what peeps think/have to say.
  • Celticmusl

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    Apr 03, 2011 4:04 PM GMT
    I've had the same thing happen to me a few times, in a public place, at the gym, somewhere non-gay. Just like a scene from a movie where boy meets boy. Then eventually after a few times hanging out, or after many many txt and emails, you tell them you're gay.....and bam....never hear from them again.

    It seems like straight(?) guys know how to flirt, the gay guys usually come up and say something obnoxious like asking me if they can pinch my nips or just bluntly saying something sexual.....yawn.
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    Apr 03, 2011 4:11 PM GMT
    Chainers saidIma bumbin this because Im interested in learning what peeps think/have to say.


    I think you make excellent points. How many threads on RJ are about how to talk or go out or meet people. THE most basic things a human being can do and there are so many guys who feel clueless. I think the internetz is great but it is an added bonus not a replacement for actual interaction. There seems to be a disconnect, even a social retardation that can set in all in the name of safe anonymity. I am shocked at the number of guys in their 20s who have never set foot in a bar or a club or even been on a date. Yet they can name every hook up site in the universe and have 6,000 screen names. Then they complain they are lonely and if they do go out no one talks to them, they are nervous, scared and can't have a good time. We were all nervous and scared at one time but still found a way to go into the world and have LIFE. The "convenience" of having internet access is cancelled out if it is obliterating the most vital parts of being alive in the real world.
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    Apr 03, 2011 4:12 PM GMT
    I think some people are afraid of meeting others in public because of lack of confidence and the internet has become almost like a shield for that, whether you look at it as a negative or a positive.

    However, if the internet is your choice of meeting others all the time, then there definitely is a problem. I, for one, have approached a lot of people through the internet and vice versa. However, I can say that for every person I've met through the internet, there's an equal number of people I've met in a public setting (romantic or not).

    It goes back to confidence, but I do believe that the internet and technology has made people "shy" and taken away the public experience, and that is a negative. Look at people all around you, even yourself maybe. Do you find it easier to text people and never talk on the phone? That is a problem in my opinion. I enjoy talking on the phone because it is more personal and it gets the point across, ALTHOUGH, expressing my thoughts on text is "easier."
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    Apr 03, 2011 4:13 PM GMT
    I see it all the time: A bunch of teenagers huddled together in the mall texting... they probably text each other to hang out.. yet they are together and still cannot seem to communicate. All people hate rejection- computers and phones have made it possible to hide behind something. People are losing the ability to communicate effectively. I am more of a face face to face kinda guy.
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    Apr 03, 2011 4:15 PM GMT
    Celticmusl saidI've had the same thing happen to me a few times, in a public place, at the gym, somewhere non-gay. Just like a scene from a movie where boy meets boy. Then eventually after a few times hanging out, or after many many txt and emails, you tell them you're gay.....and bam....never hear from them again.

    It seems like straight(?) guys know how to flirt, the gay guys usually come up and say something obnoxious like asking me if they can pinch my nips or just bluntly saying something sexual.....yawn.


    Yea thats happened to me too, but remember I live in the Castro. Almost every guy you meet here is open/happy being gay so that isnt the issue lol.

    I think that we fail to teach children social skills, especially with stranger danger. Did anyone ever think that instilling the idea of "dont talk to strangers" would lead to "never make a friend, ever again."
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    Apr 03, 2011 5:10 PM GMT
    Nope- it's society in general. Two years ago, when I was sitting as a junior in my health class, my teacher also ranted about the exact same thing. Not about grindr and gay.com per se, but the fact that we use text to communicate rather than talk over the phone or normal every day communication.

    Shit- I talk too fast to the point that I almost have a speech impediment, but I'm still willing to talk over the phone.

    My issue with approaching strangers is not really so much that I'm too shy or nervous or don't know how to flirt or whatever. It's more that I'm a horrible conversationalist. Especially with women.

    Going off of what Celticmuscl said- from my personal experience, a lot of gay guys are straight up blunt about what they want, no flirting attached, which can be either extremely funny or extremely creepy, depending on how well I know them beforehand. Funny or creepy- their courtship completely blows and they lose their chance at earning me as a partner.
  • danielek

    Posts: 124

    Apr 03, 2011 5:21 PM GMT
    Even before the internet, I was never very social. But it's probably made things somewhat worse. That said, the only friends I really have are from the internet (or Grindr) originally.

    It kinda sucks the world has turned out this way. But I don't know what the solution is. Ban the internet and cellphones? That's not going to happen.
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    Apr 03, 2011 5:25 PM GMT
    Bullwinklemoos said

    My issue with approaching strangers is not really so much that I'm too shy or nervous or don't know how to flirt or whatever. It's more that I'm a horrible conversationalist. Especially with women.



    But isnt that the issue at its core? Even if we use Grindr, match.com, adam4adam or whatever the means are, we still have to have a conversation at the end of the day right?

    That is what confuses me, lol.
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    Apr 03, 2011 5:26 PM GMT
    I don't think much has fundamentally changed really from times gone by. Some people don't like how others communicate. People weren't fans of phone's and felt they were impersonal also when they first came out. People may txt and type messages on the internet...but it's still a form of communication...maybe one that you just can't relate to?

    To make a broad vague generalization from both observation and personal experience, I think, younger people are in general more cautious/insecure about themselves and tend to be more timid. Obviously there are more tools to hide the timidness behind now (cell phones, computers, txting) but it's still fundamentally very similar. As one grows older one gains more security, begins to engage with people more directly...

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    Apr 03, 2011 5:27 PM GMT
    danielek saidEven before the internet, I was never very social. But it's probably made things somewhat worse. That said, the only friends I really have are from the internet (or Grindr) originally.

    It kinda sucks the world has turned out this way. But I don't know what the solution is. Ban the internet and cellphones? That's not going to happen.


    Nothing has to be banned. Just occassionally walk away from the laptop and go out.
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    Apr 03, 2011 5:29 PM GMT
    NYMan saidI don't think much has fundamentally changed really from times gone by. Some people don't like how others communicate. People weren't fans of phone's and felt they were impersonal also when they first came out. People may txt and type messages on the internet...but it's still a form of communication...maybe one that you just can't relate to?

    To make a broad vague generalization from both observation and personal experience, I think, younger people are in general more cautious/insecure about themselves and tend to be more timid. Obviously there are more tools to hide the timidness behind now (cell phones, computers, txting) but it's still fundamentally very similar. As one grows older one gains more security, begins to engage with people more directly...



    It is not the type that I think is an issue, but in this day and age people are simply unaware of their surroundings.

    The fact of the matter is because of Grindr and online dating no one ever learned how to meet someone for the first time face to face, even when it is pretty clear that they are attracted to you.

    Also, I did date on the internet (currently taking a break from all of it) and I have to say that it is a disappointment and nothing more. People flake out, or you meet them and they fail to communicate on many different levels. I have had one experience where the guy couldn't get off of his phone for anything, and we were meeting face to face.

    Let alone the fact that some think that meeting a person in public is foreign, yet using social media online is their comfort zone, how are we supposed to find people with common interest?

    I just think that some guys tend to need that in order to shield themselves as opposed to reading the social queues around them.
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    Apr 03, 2011 5:40 PM GMT
    I’ve dated a lot on the internet, my friends used to mock me for it. I’ve found it to be really rewarding. You can engage and weed out people who are crazy much faster I’ve found. I’ve also met people in clubs or in coffee houses. I don’t think one medium is particularly ‘better’ or ‘more appropriate’ than the other. Either way you need a system to select the good and not the bad. Do you think people who you meet out in a coffee shop or club won’t necessarily constantly check their txt’s or phone calls when you’re out with them? That’s not a behavior that’s exclusive to ‘internet people’ necessarily.

    No matter what: Dating/Meeting people, it’s a process. You meet people who are lame, you meet people who are amazing. You click or don’t, they click or don’t. Some people are more advanced in some areas socially, professionally, intellectually, spiritually than others…but I don’t think that makes it better/worse.

    Just because someone is able to initially carry on a conversation doesn’t mean they’re a good communicator, right? What if someone doesn’t have a problem with initial social skills but they still turn out to have horrible interpersonal skills for a relationship? Or…they hide behind grindr or the computer but once you get to know them they’re a great communicator?
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    Apr 03, 2011 5:48 PM GMT
    NYMan saidI’ve dated a lot on the internet, my friends used to mock me for it. I’ve found it to be really rewarding. You can engage and weed out people who are crazy much faster I’ve found. I’ve also met people in clubs or in coffee houses. I don’t think one medium is particularly ‘better’ or ‘more appropriate’ than the other. Either way you need a system to select the good and not the bad. Do you think people who you meet out in a coffee shop or club won’t necessarily constantly check their txt’s or phone calls when you’re out with them? That’s not a behavior that’s exclusive to ‘internet people’ necessarily.

    No matter what: Dating/Meeting people, it’s a process. You meet people who are lame, you meet people who are amazing. You click or don’t, they click or don’t. Some people are more advanced in some areas socially, professionally, intellectually, spiritually than others…but I don’t think that makes it better/worse.

    Just because someone is able to initially carry on a conversation doesn’t mean they’re a good communicator, right? What if someone doesn’t have a problem with initial social skills but they still turn out to have horrible interpersonal skills for a relationship? Or…they hide behind grindr or the computer but once you get to know them they’re a great communicator?


    Yeah - but you clearly are able to function very well in the real world as easily as you are online. Ideally that is the way it should be - no one is suggesting one over the other. I think the OP is questioning those who can only function in some kind of electronic anonymity.
  • tuffguyndc

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    Apr 03, 2011 6:03 PM GMT
    dude, at first i thought this was another crazy post. however, i so happy you posted this ad. i do think many people have lost the ability to talk to others in person. i mean i keep trying to tell all my female friends what to do and how to go about it and they just do not get it.
    as for my male friends the straight ones are usually fine. they do not seem to have a problem but a lot the gay ones all do. i mean it seems as they were a bit socially awkward when they were younger and they still are to this day. i also think most do not know how to follow the clues as well as you and seem to be able to do. i mean if i see someone staring at me that i like than i am going to go introduce myself. especially if i am at a bar and have been drinking. i definitely will go up and speak. i mean again what is the worst that can happen? they can so no i am not interested they can act a completely ass. even if that is the case, i can still walk away. i would like to know why guys and women do not follow the clues that given to them. why do they find it so hard to approach a guy who is clearly interested in them.
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    Apr 03, 2011 6:09 PM GMT
    [quote][cite]Cash said

    Yeah - but you clearly are able to function very well in the real world as easily as you are online. Ideally that is the way it should be - no one is suggesting one over the other. I think the OP is questioning those who can only function in some kind of electronic anonymity.[/quote]

    That is exactly what I am questioning.

    NYman, Im not saying that online dating is wrong. Ive used it in the past and have had some good experiences with it. You say that your friends make fun of you for using online dating? Yea, thats really judgmental of them. My friends make fun of me because I go out to bars/clubs/coffee shops/the gym by myself and meet people who go their as well.

    The internet has provided such a shield for the youth of today to meet other people that no one meets organically. Socalscotty even said it is a foreign concept to them. Thats how people did it before Grindr came about. So why is it that society is becoming more comfortable with meeting through anonymous means (where there really is very little accountability to your conversations) than meeting face to face?

    Also, on a side note, it is very difficult to determine attraction from an online profile as well. Now that Im off of Grindr and paying attention more, Im finding some guys who ignored my introductions on Grindr are giving me the eye at the gym.

    We are limiting ourselves to a profile box and a picture when human attraction is so much more than that.
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    Apr 03, 2011 6:09 PM GMT
    tuffguyndc saiddude, at first i thought this was another crazy post. however, i so happy you posted this ad. i do think many people have lost the ability to talk to others in person. i mean i keep trying to tell all my female friends what to do and how to go about it and they just do not get it.
    as for my male friends the straight ones are usually fine. they do not seem to have a problem but a lot the gay ones all do. i mean it seems as they were a bit socially awkward when they were younger and they still are to this day. i also think most do not know how to follow the clues as well as you and seem to be able to do. i mean if i see someone staring at me that i like than i am going to go introduce myself. especially if i am at a bar and have been drinking. i definitely will go up and speak. i mean again what is the worst that can happen? they can so no i am not interested they can act a completely ass. even if that is the case, i can still walk away. i would like to know why guys and women do not follow the clues that given to them. why do they find it so hard to approach a guy who is clearly interested in them.


    Its not even that they find it hard to approach these people, but they find it weird that I would even do such a thing. It seems more natural than talking to someone on Grindr, IMO.
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    Apr 03, 2011 6:15 PM GMT
    I think efficiency plays a role in this as well. Going out to a social setting, meeting some random person face to face, and initiating a contrived conversation about each other may well be more gratifying and more "human". But it's a lot less efficient than logging on to a meat-market dating site or Grindr, where you can see a lot of different guys, their likes and dislikes, political views, interests, hobbies, etc, and automatically weed out those you'd likely not hit it off with.

    I'm not favoring one method over another. But nowadays, when people are so busy balancing work, school, hobbies, family, and friends, it's not surprising to see people resorting to the most efficient way of scoping out guys.
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    Apr 03, 2011 6:17 PM GMT
    Interesting topic. I agree with a lot of what you say about our generation not knowing how to engage with people and lacking seduction skills.

    I think internet dating sites have become too much of a security blanket for guys who are a bit shy or otherwise. Even though it's safer (at least on sites that allow verification) I wonder about the long term social effects.

    From personal experience the only way to get over being shy is to talk to people- offline. Have an opener or something ready to go when you're eye flirting with someone. People will reject you but that's part of the process, it happens on dating sites too. Perpetual eye flirting is a great way to frustrate and confuse someone. One of you are going to have to make the first move or nothing will happen.

    I don't think our culture has lost the ability to "seduce" people but I think our generation of younger guys hasn't developed the ability to approach people that show mutual interest on the street or in a non bar/ club scene. Few don't know how to engage someone on the street.

    When someone is eye flirting they'll give you a quick look once or twice and then it's back to their ipod or whatever they have in their hands to distract them from others around them. I also think a lot of guys wouldn't know how to react to someone hitting on them in public, at least in a major city. Like here in New York there's a lot of eye flirting and over thinking but not approaching and engaging. And this is NYC, not Kansas so you'd think people would engage more with you...

    Of course you shouldn't go around like a total creep and go up to everyone who looks at you. Reading body language is key.

    And you're also right that people are bad at reading body language. A lot of guys really need to work on this.

    Decades ago before internet dating people had to actually go up and talk to each other and get to know each other. Despite insecurities and all the other physiological stuff things seducing still occurred. There was an art to this process that has been lost and watered down due to internet dating. I'm not against internet dating at all, I just wonder about the long term social effects of it.

    I have a lot more to say about this but my post is already getting too long.
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    Apr 03, 2011 6:22 PM GMT
    wildtype87 saidI think efficiency plays a role in this as well. Going out to a social setting, meeting some random person face to face, and initiating a contrived conversation about each other may well be more gratifying and more "human". But it's a lot less efficient than logging on to a meat-market dating site or Grindr, where you can see a lot of different guys, their likes and dislikes, political views, interests, hobbies, etc, and automatically weed out those you'd likely not hit it off with.

    I'm not favoring one method over another. But nowadays, when people are so busy balancing work, school, hobbies, family, and friends, it's not surprising to see people resorting to the most efficient way of scoping out guys.


    What about guys who, while may not be your type, you find your attracted to anyways?

    Like Ive said before, I have approached people online, been rejected, then seen them eying me in a public spot, or try to make a move on me.

    When I was just a picture and numbers there was no attraction, when I was a human being they had interest.

    Also, what about swagger? Confidence? These things, while being important to any sort of attraction, are lost through the internet.

    While it becomes more efficient, I have to question the quality at which the work gets done. Sometimes when you are efficient you end up throwing things out that may have caught your attention in person.
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    Apr 03, 2011 6:23 PM GMT
    Everything has it's ups and downs. Everyone has their preferences. I have met a ton of guys on the internet, it's hard to find a gay guy I would be interested in outside of that. I have met 2 guys IRL that I dated, and both led to great relationships.. and many other that I wasn't interested in at all. I don't really find people I would like at a gay bar, and I don't think it would really be a proper place for that kind of thing. I have dated many more guys from online, and I will admit a lot of them were total duds.... but hey I learned what it is to be a boyfriend to another dude through those lame flings.. and it wasn't easy. Back then, all I knew about was 'myspace'. There wasn't anybody who could tell me the dynamics of a gay relationships.

    They don't teach that anywhere outside of experience.

    But anyways, yeah everyone's different. Some people just suck at approaching people period, and some people have no problems with it. My boyfriend won't even tell the lady dragging her ass in the front the sushi excuse me I need to grab something haha.
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    Apr 03, 2011 6:24 PM GMT
    Ehanson said

    When someone is eye flirting they'll give you a quick look once or twice and then it's back to their ipod or whatever they have in their hands to distract them from others around them. I also think a lot of guys wouldn't know how to react to someone hitting on them in public, at least in a major city. Like here in New York there's a lot of eye flirting, thinking but not approaching and engaging. And this is NYC, not Kansas so you'd think people would engage more with you... Of course you shouldn't go around like a total creep and go up to everyone who looks at you. Reading body language is key.


    A lot of it is knowing how to react to someone looking at you too. If they look at you, and you make eye contact, then do nothing, it really shows the other person nothing at all, its a mixed signal.

    Now if you make eye contact, hold it, smile, they smile back, your fucken golden. Someone wouldnt smile at you unless they were attracted to you in the least bit.