Earlier this week, Katie J.M. Baker of Jezebel.com posted a cautionary tale, for both female and male online daters alike. A New York banker charting the waves of Match.com came up with a novel way to keep the women he was talking to on the site straight—he made a spreadsheet of the eight women he was corresponding with. He included their name, a photo, his initial impressions after viewing their profile, the dates when they’d exchanged winks, the dates of when they’d exchanged emails, and impressions of their first date. He color-coded the women according to who he wanted to “monitor closely ASAP” and who he wanted to “monitor casually.” He, of course, gave each woman a numerical score based on her appearance, getting so specific as to dole out three 7.5s and a 9.5. For one woman, he wrote, “Ok girl, but very jappy; one and done for me.”
Apparently, during a great date on April 4th with “Arielle,” a woman described on his spreadsheet as “very pretty; sweet & down to earth/great personality,” this guy let it slip that he had been keeping said spreadsheet. Arielle, of course, wanted to see it. He obliged.
He emailed her the spreadsheet after their date saying, “Well…this could be a mistake, but what the hell. I hope this e-mail doesn’t backfire, because I really had a great time and hope to hang again soon .”
Backfire doesn’t even begin to cover it.
Arielle sent the spreadsheet to a few friends. Who presumably sent it to a few friends. Soon, it landed in Jezebel’s inbox. From there, it went viral. As newspapers picked up the story, people stopped being satisfied with identifying the spreadsheet maker as “a Match.com member,” and revealed the poor dope by name—one David Merkur, 28, who works for a real-estate finance firm on Park Avenue. He now says that making, and sharing the Excel spreadsheet, was a “serious lapse in judgment” and that he is “deeply remorseful.”
While many, many on the internet have bashed Merkur, and a few others have applauded his sense of organization (like Jessica Wakeman at The Frisky), I think Merkur’s spreadsheet points to a larger sociological phenomenon here.
Not to get all Mars/Venus on you, but I think this spreadsheet is symbolic of the ways men and women approach online dating differently.
Here’s what I mean.