Mashable: Crypto ‘romance scammers’ stole $139 million from victims in 2021

Mashable: Crypto ‘romance scammers’ stole $139 million from victims in 2021. “‘A newly released data spotlight shows that in 2021 reported losses to romance scammers were up nearly 80 percent compared to 2020, and the total reported lost over the past five years has now reached $1.3 billion,’ cautions the FTC. ‘According to the spotlight, consumers who paid romance scammers with cryptocurrency reported losing $139 million in total in 2021, more than any other payment amount.’”

Bridal Bliss: After Meeting Online During Quarantine, Cheri And Tracey Said ‘I Do’ In A Museum A Year Later (Essence)

Essence: Bridal Bliss: After Meeting Online During Quarantine, Cheri And Tracey Said ‘I Do’ In A Museum A Year Later. “Thinking back to how Cheri met Tracey, she looks at is as “luck” — beginner’s luck, specifically. She was dipping her toe in the online dating pool for the first time. The pandemic had just taken a hold of everyday life and she knew that quarantining in her new home of Philadelphia (where she’d relocated for work) without any handsome prospects to interact with for an unidentified period of time would be unpleasant. Soon after creating a profile on Match.com, she connected with New Jersey-based Tracey and life changed — not just because of the virus.”

The Guardian: Strange, horny game ads are flooding social media. I accidentally became obsessed

The Guardian: Strange, horny game ads are flooding social media. I accidentally became obsessed. “Mildly tamer versions of this ad have been bombarding me on social media for months now. You might have seen them yourself. They’re for an array of different mobile games – Choices, Whispers, Chapters, Episode – which each offer a range of visual interactive stories, usually romantic, in which you control a protagonist and periodically make narrative choices that affect the story’s outcome.”

PsyPost: A person’s attachment style predicts the quality of their romantic relationships during the COVID-19 lockdown

PsyPost: A person’s attachment style predicts the quality of their romantic relationships during the COVID-19 lockdown. “Attachment security predicts better relationship quality during the trying times of lockdown, according to research published in Frontiers in Psychology. By contrast, infection rates, perceived threat from the virus, and level of governmental restrictions were not significant predictors of relationship quality.”

PsyPost: The memes we read might influence how we love, study finds

PsyPost: The memes we read might influence how we love, study finds. “The prevalence and importance of social media has made the sharing of internet memes a primary method of communicating ideas today. Short and punchy, memes are pervasive and often emotionally salient, making them prime candidates for influencers of human behavior. This observation led a team of researchers to explore the influence of romantic memes on relationship beliefs. Their research is published in Psychological Studies.”

CNN: Scam artists lurking on dating apps and social media made away with a record haul in 2020

CNN: Scam artists lurking on dating apps and social media made away with a record haul in 2020. “Scammers lurk on dating apps and social media, striking up conversation with strangers until they build up trust to eventually ask for money. The prevalence of these types of scams has been steadily rising for the past four years. In 2020, there was a 50% jump in reported dollar losses from romance scams from 2019. The pandemic has only made things easier, creating legitimate reasons for scammers to hide their real motives, claiming they cannot meet in person or need money for medical treatment.”

The Northern Echo: Finding love beneath the waterworks tree

The Northern Echo: Finding love beneath the waterworks tree. “Whereas Vincent lived in the west end of town, and his father, William, became the town’s mayor in 1931, Alice lived in a terrace on Corporation Road and worked in an insurance office. These very different ends of town were united by the Greenbank Methodist Church, where both their families worshipped and where their eyes first met. The website also features Alice’s diary, so we can see the relationship developing from both sides.”

Online romance scams: A modern form of fraud (EurekAlert)

EurekAlert: Online romance scams: A modern form of fraud. “Over the last 20 years, the rapid development of digital communication technology has given rise to new forms of social interaction on social media. Digital communication technologies can overcome physical, social and psychological barriers in building romantic relationships. Around 1400, dating sites/chats have been created over the last decade in North America alone. Solely in the UK, 23% of Internet users have met someone online with whom they had a romantic relationship for a certain period and that even 6% of married couples met through the web.”

The Next Web: Scientist trains AI to write messages of love on candy hearts

The Next Web: Scientist trains AI to write messages of love on candy hearts. “Janelle Shane, who in her day job creates computer-controlled holograms for studying the brain, collected genuine messages printed on the heart-shaped sweets to use as training data. She then fed them to a neural network so that it could learn the patterns behind the words.” I think “All Hover” was my favorite.

Washington Post: This Instagram account became wildly popular for its queer personal ads — and now it’s a dating app

Washington Post: This Instagram account became wildly popular for its queer personal ads — and now it’s a dating app . “In August 2018, the ad was posted to the Instagram account Personals, known for posting such ads by and for the queer community. [Sula] Malina, who uses they/them pronouns, had recently gotten out of an open relationship and was seeking monogamy…. After starting in 2017, Personals became a hugely popular place for people like Malina to meet a partner or to make a friend, attracting more than 60,000 followers. Last month, founder Kells Rakowski took the next step of turning it into its own app, Lex, creating a rare queer-centric platform for romance and friendship.”

CNET: Facebook Dating won’t push Tinder off your home screen just yet

CNET: Facebook Dating won’t push Tinder off your home screen just yet. “Shelby Ruth, a 20-year-old Canadian, started online dating because it was a quick way to meet new people. So when Facebook launched its new dating feature in Canada last year, she signed up because the social network made it easy to do. Compared with Tinder, Ruth noticed, users share more profile information on Facebook Dating. But there are also downsides.”

Mashable: How Google Calendar is breaking hearts

Mashable: How Google Calendar is breaking hearts . “My friend’s Google Calendar isn’t the only heartbreaker. When Hannah — who prefers to use her first name only — split up with her boyfriend of 3.5 years, their shared Google Calendar added to her heartbreak. ‘We had so much planned in the shared calendar including lots of family events with his family,’ she said. ‘The worst thing was that he obviously didn’t realise he was still adding ‘events’ to the calendar after we’d broken up.’”

New York Times: Facebook Connected Her to a Tattooed Soldier in Iraq. Or So She Thought.

New York Times: Facebook Connected Her to a Tattooed Soldier in Iraq. Or So She Thought.. “While fraud has proliferated on Facebook for years, those running the military romance scams are taking on not only one of the world’s most influential companies, but also the most powerful military — and succeeding. Many scammers operate from their phones in Nigeria and other African nations, working several victims at the same time. In interviews in Nigeria, six men told The New York Times that the love hoaxes were lucrative and low risk.”

IEEE Spectrum: This AI Watched 100 Films to Learn How to Recognize a Kiss

IEEE Spectrum: This AI Watched 100 Films to Learn How to Recognize a Kiss. “Like someone who has never been kissed, AI began learning the basics by binge-watching romantic film clips to see how Hollywood stars lock lips. By training deep learning algorithms that have already proven adept at recognizing faces and objects to also recognize steamy kissing scenes dramatized by professional actors, a data scientist has shown how AI systems could gain greater insight into the most intimate human activities.”