Chatting online to friends and family: you know them and they know you. You are not anonymous to them. However when you meet someone new online and you are talking to him or her, then you and the other person become anonymous. You gain online anonymity and even ultimate anonymity from that person.
Meeting people online is a good way to make friends and remain anonymous to them. If you want to date that person you will lose the online anonymity and not be anonymous to them anymore. Which is why if you want to lose your ultimate anonymity, you must be sure each person is exactly who he or she says they are, or there could be a trouble.
The features of dating sites differ from site to site, but they all have the same intention. To let people make new friends and maybe even families. The main features are that there are the sites that let you install your picture onto your profile, so that people can get an idea of the kind of person you are. You will still remain anonymous to them, but they will have a face to go with the text. These websites are trying to break the anonymous part of people when they sign up for these websites. Some websites can now let you leave a simple voice message with your profile and people can then hear your voice. Other features include chat-rooms on dating websites and special events being held for the members of the website. Although all these options seem like a great idea, they can't come for free. More and more sites are calling for membership fees, so that the website can run effectively and so that members can be sure that other members are at least old enough to be able to obtain a credit card. Of course, certain websites allow for a free trial period to see if you like the site plus how easy it is to navigate your way around their website.
If you want to date someone through the Internet then you will get to know that person a lot more before you decide to meet him or her. You will still have your online anonymity for as long as you like and even remain anonymous for the same length of time. But little icebreakers to the person about yourself will slowly reveal the real you and you will slowly lose the cloak of invincibility and not be Mr. or Mrs. Anonymous to that person.
Instant messaging is one good way to start some small little chats. MSN and Yahoo messenger are the places to chat first of all. These messaging services are free and a fun way to meet; there is the option of a voice conversation with a headset, and the option for a web cam chat. Or even both can be used at the same time but don't forget the option to play little one-on-one games with each other like Tic-Tac-Toe and checkers. These are pleasant ways to spend a rainy afternoon speaking to someone you feel matches you and to slowly reveal yourself to that person.
Virtual matchmaking is a rather risky business. If you plan to just jump straight in and say hook me up with someone then ok it's for you, but you have to be reasonable these websites may not have the full features described about for the other websites. There are little emails even in the "safer" websites that can be sent out to members saying we have found your perfect match, but how can they be sure of that.
The website owners do not know you and you do not know them, they are simply sending you a e-mail to say "don't forget us, you have signed up, so now we can contact you anytime". The only person who can decide who is right for themselves is of course yourself. Websites may claim that they can find your perfect partner, but you have to be willing to go out there and find him or her.