By Ruth Addicott
Future Publishing is launching a magazine aimed at women who have lost heart looking for love in bars and clubs and have turned to online dating.
Connect is billed as the UK’s .rst news-stand magazine about internet dating and is the result of a tie-up between Future and DatingDirect.com.
The magazine will also highlight safety advice, such as withholding phone numbers and “not driving off for a day in the country on a first date”.
Lynda Burgess, managing editor of Future’s internet titles, is editor, Trevor Gilham is art director and Sharon Thomas, former features editor on Woman’s Weekly, isfeatures editor. A permanent editor is expected to be recruited once the magazine has launched.
Burgess said she was inspired to launch the title after bumping into three married couples in the space of a year – all of whom had met through the internet. She said the growth of online dating was “phenomenal” and was reflected in the appearance of TV programmes such as Streetmate, Mr Right and Perfect Match.
“Connect is aimed at single women aged 25 to 45 who have had a long-term relationship, and are a bit sceptical about embarking on another. They are a bit cynical about meeting people in pubs, bars and clubs and they have heard about internet dating but don’t really understand how it works. It’s our job to de-mystify it,” she told Press Gazette. “It is no more dangerous than picking up someone when you’re pissed in a nightclub. It’s as safe as anything else.”
The first issue will feature tips on flirting, a one-toone consultation with a life coach, a fly on the wall insight into a .rst date and advice on how to tell if your online date is being honest. Published quarterly, Connect will have its own dating website, connect-mag.com, which will also allow access to DatingDirect.com’s 875,000 UK members.
The magazine, which will have a print run of 150,000 and a cover price of £1.80, launches on National Dating Day, 24 September.
One report suggests that one third of all internet users use the web to strike up some sort of relationship.