Saturday, March 20, 2010

How to Flirt on Facebook

  1. Send a friends request only when you have a real life connection. On Facebook, people are much less likely to accept friends requests from people they don't know. So when you send a request, add a friendly personal message, and remind the person of your connection:

    • If you've already met, mention the occasion: "Hey! We met at the office Christmas party. How are you doing?"
    • You have a mutual friend. Note that this friend should be someone you've actually spent time with in real life. "Hi there, I'm a friend of Jackie's. I'm surprised we haven't met yet!"
      • If the person came up in the "Suggestions" section (because you have mutual friends) that's worth mentioning when you send the request.
    • You're in the same class or work in the same setting. This is a bit of a stretch, and might come off a little creepy. It's better to strike up a conversation and introduce yourself in real life before becoming friends on Facebook.
    • You go to the same school, work for the same company, or have a similar interest. Don't be surprised if your request is ignored; some people simply aren't interested in meeting new people through Facebook. Pairing your request with a question is a good idea here: "Hey, I go to MHCC too. What's your major?" or "I noticed you're into foreign horror movies too. Have you seen 'A Tale of Two Sisters' yet?"
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    Comment on some, but not all, of their updates and pictures. You don't want to give them the impression that you're eagerly reading every update, and poring over every picture. (And if you are, that's not good; read How to Stop Being Needy.) You also shouldn't always be the first person to comment. Another thing to consider is that if you comment too often, their co-workers, family, and/or friends might notice, and ask the person "What's going on with you and so-and-so?" which might make the person you're interested in feel uncomfortable about you.
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    Keep your comments short, sweet, and appropriate. Writing a novel is bad. One or two sentences are enough. Look at how other people comment - and how the person responds - to get an idea of what's appropriate and what's not. Some people keep their Facebook profiles clean and professional; others don't really care. Generally, comments are the cyber equivalent of small talk. Save the getting-to-know-each-other for chat and private messages.
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    Know when to back off. If this person responds to other people's comments but not yours, they never comment on your pictures or updates, and they don't respond when you say hello via IM or private messages, they're probably just not interested. Leave them alone. Being sticky is not a nice idea and it only causes low self esteem.
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    Take the flirting off of Facebook. If you're actually interested in dating this person, and they're flirting back, see if you can move the flirting offline.

    • When you're going out with your friends, start an event (here), and invite the person you've been flirting with. This is a good approach because it's a group event, and doesn't have the pressure of a one-on-one date. It helps, of course, if you have friends who will actually RSVP and show up! Bonus points if a mutual friend will be there.
    • Post pictures of the places you go and things you do. If your prospective date comments and shows interest (e.g. "Wow! That's an awesome view" or "I've never tried that! Looks like fun!") respond saying something like "It is! You should come next time" or "I was planning on going there next weekend. Want to join me?" If they respond positively, send them a private message asking for their number, or giving them yours.
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    Don't end every sentence with lol or rofl. Use real words you might find in a dictionary or magazine.

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