The 21st Century

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The 21st century has revolutionized the way we interact with others and view the world; technology made it is easier to communicate, network, and even flirt with others. Computers transformed themselves into becoming the new “cupid” via instant messaging, chat-rooms and online dating in which flirting is easier in these spaces. Also the rise of social networking sites even made it possible to find a significant other; for example, my friend met his current girlfriend of six months through Facebook. However, there are still remnants of traditional flirting in the sense where we still meet people who attracts us at common locations, such as a bar or party. Both offline and online flirting have similar goals of starting and following a sexual and/or romantic relationship with other people; but simultaneously, they have different approaches in meeting new people. With the use of my interview, I am going to analyze the male and female perspective of flirting online and offline and the many opportunities and restrictions that correspond with flirting. Although the ways we flirt have changed dramatically, ideas of gender has not: both in the past and present, men seek physical attractiveness in a partner whereas women seek financial stability. Additionally, I will further examine the double standard of gender and how it stagnantly remains unaffected in today’s society and its effect on how one approach and flirts with another.  There are many opportunities in flirting online as well offline in which they have similar attitudes and tactics when talking to others. Flirting often involves an “erotic energy” between two people escalated by “alcohol, music, attractive people, and sexy outfits” (Hamilton &ump; Armstrong 605). Both my male and female interviewees (Ages 21) agree on the parallels of flirting to see where the dating potential lies and decide how far the romantic and sexual relationship goes. Flirting is purely a sexual behavior that is fueled by novelty; meeting new people or trying to kindle a sexual relationship with a friend seems risky and exciting ergo sparks an attraction. Flirting starts the dating process and is ultimately the foundation of a relationship. Moreover, according to my male interviewee, he believes that flirting is a “playful interaction between two people where sexual tension is present” regardless of the space he or she is in (Male, 21). Flirting, or “playing hard to get”, is a game of desire that makes both parties want the other person more and becomes a harmless sexual activity. The constant playful tone of the relationship makes dating more enjoyable for those participating in the flirting. The basis of flirting is notion of acting upon innocent yet frisky carnal feelings between two people while trying to attract a new romantic or sexual partner through different online and offline spaces.  Furthermore, online flirting gives more opportunities to finding a sexual partner because of its easy and unidentifiable realm. Due to its anonymous environment, men and women flirt by using many nonverbal cues that indicate actions such as acronyms and descriptions of their physical attractiveness and status (Whitty 116). Flirting similarly includes saying certain things while knowing that it will peak the other person’s sexual and romantic desire (Female, 21). Men and women say certain things either to show or portray interest towards the other party. Knowing what the other person likes is an advantaged to the flirter because he or she can build upon those positive qualities. The flirter can self-validate themselves through the description of text by creating a positive image and good impression in the other person’s eyes. The description of one’s appearance and personality can be alluring the others because the image is developed in their minds. By developing their own idealistic picture of the flirter, whom they are talking to online, it gives them the power making them sexier, smarter or funnier in...
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