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Are Post-Date Questionnaires a Good Idea? [OPINION]

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Dating is a learning experience. Would there be anything wrong with men and women actually learning a little something about how they are viewed by the opposite sex? Is a post-date questionnaire really that crazy of an idea? Emily V. Gordon has some thoughts.

Just when you thought the world of dating couldn’t get any cringe-worthy, enter Mike, the Data Collector. Mike, after a few dates with a girl he met on OKCupid, emailed her a questionnaire where he inquired her opinions on his outfit, his manners, his masculinity, and a host of other things that no one ever asks about ever. (You can take a look at the questionnaire here.)

Now listen, I know he’s got some cutesy one liners in there – one footnote requests a high five for Mike – but you can tell that this is a guy that is genuinely frustrated with his success with women and looking for answers. Perhaps the survey feels a bit OCD Psycho to you or I, but it’s perhaps a better idea than the “call up exes and grill them” route (popular with men in their 20s). Mike decided to collect some raw data in real time, and throw in a few jokes, perhaps in hopes that if the girl balked, he could say it was just a joke. What he really wanted was the data.

But as crazy as this might seem, hasn’t everyone had a date that went well in your eyes, followed by the bitter Arctic blast of being ignored? Weren’t you dying to find out what happened to make things go sour? I have, in my distant youth, run into a guy who unceremoniously gave me the brush off, grabbed his lapels (or where his lapels would have been if he hadn’t dressed like a 10 year old boy) and yelled “WHY?” into his face until friends dragged me away…. but I digress.

We live in a fairly consumer-based society these days, where feedback on social networks can start anything from a 99% revolution to altered video game endings. If things aren’t going well in your dating life, perhaps a little bit of feedback is what you need. Maybe you need to learn that making jokes about whether or not a girl is a feminist based on who pays is kinda lame. Um Mike, maybe you have terrible breath. Maybe you over analyze everything, which is most definitely true if you’re sending out dating surveys. The point is, we don’t grow if we don’t change, and we don’t change if we don’t know what needs to change.

The only real issue with a dating etiquette questionnaire (and now this is the psychology lab rat in me talking) is that for full disclosure, you’d need two things: anonymity and motivation. If someone doesn’t care about you enough to date you, why would they care about you enough to fill out the survey? And if you are emailing out a survey and expecting it back, there’s no chance of anonymity. Perhaps if you set up a website survey that people could complete anonymously. Maybe even throw in a Chili’s gift card as a reward?

But I’m getting ahead of myself. It turns out that I actually like the idea of a dating survey, but can’t possibly see a way for administering a dating survey to not be the lamest, creepiest little thing you could do to a person you kinda know. So I’m stuck, and would love some feedback from you guys about whether or not you’d want to see the results of a dating survey, and what secrets you’d want to know most.

One thing I do know is that this story is probably being made into a movie as we speak. Hopefully Channing Tatum is available.

Click here to read more from Emily V. Gordon.

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