And being frankly amazed at how much dating sites charge before you can even tell if the site is any good.
Elite Singles: minimum cost is £150 for three months.
Parship.com: minimum is £90 for three months.
Match.com: Will let you sign up for a single month. For...£43. But you have to hunt to find that option. The cheapest they show by default is three months for £90.
Now, I don't mind paying for a decent service, but frankly the basics I've seen from looking around these sites haven't filled me with hope that they're where "my people" are. Most of them seem more focussed on looks than anything else, and the assumptions they make around hobbies tend not to include things like "playing with technology" or "computer games", or even "board games" a lot of the time. The music choices range from "Opera" to "pop", and if you're lucky they might mention "hard rock". Which isn't to say that I'd only date someone who played euro-style board games and listened to dark electro. But when everything on the site screams "Pretend to be bland! It's what everyone wants!" I find myself completely turned off.
So, meantime I've been playing with my OkCupid profile, in an attempt to find a description that feels like me, so that when I decide what sites _are_ worth using I've got a starting point. Much as when I last wrote my CV, I want something that puts off unsuitable people as much as it might attract someone who would suit me. I think I'm getting there, although I'm still not entirely happy with it. If anyone has comments/suggestions then shout.
Original post on Dreamwidth - there are comments there.