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Second, Jiayuan may have implemented their verification system simply due to the bad luck of a few scandals attached to their site.

I’ve seen little evidence of American users demanding verification, on the other hand, though I have heard a few anecdotal accounts of Americans giving up on online dating because of dishonesty.

Why have these Asian sites put resources into verification of users’ profiles while American sites continue their caveat emptor approach?

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China’s largest site, Jiayuan.com, ran into a huge PR problem in 2011 when a man swindled a woman he met on the site.

This incident intensified Jiayuan’s more general reputational problems due to lying on its site.

First, there was a significant amount of stigma and skepticism when online dating was first introduced.

Perhaps cultural differences made it harder to break down that mindset in some countries, forcing websites to work harder on verification and building trust with their clients.

According to Markus Frind, who described the hack and the events that followed in detail on his personal blog, Plentyoffish was hacked by Argentinian hacker Chris Russo, who did it under his own name, without taking precaution to hide his identity.

Frind then claims that Russo tried to extort money from him, to which he responded by threatening to sue.

This, in effect, told the recipient that he or she was among the highest choices of the person offering the rose.

The virtual roses, inspired by Michael Spence’s Nobel-Prize winning idea of “signaling,” allowed people to show they really wanted a date because it was costly to send one.

False advertising, or misrepresentation, is standard in any marketplace; the dating market is no different.

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