“It’s Okay To Look”

While watching the news on television, a match.com commercial appeared.  I confess that I am weird in the sense that sometimes I find the most interesting part of programming to be commercials.  As a former corporate marketing guy the habit of studying commercials is a hard one to break.  I was not paying as close attention to this ad as I do for some, but got the impression that they have enhanced or upgraded their service in some way.  Sorry, that much of the message was lost on me.  But I am also the wrong demographic for the service, specifically, I’m married.  But wait a minute.  While I am definitely married, am I the wrong demographic?  What are they up to here? 

What DID catch my eye in this commercial was their sign-off slogan, which they are in the process of protecting with a trademark.  That slogan is:  IT’S OKAY TO LOOK.  It left me pondering.  On one hand, I find it to be an effective devise.  But on another, I have to wonder if they are trying to expand their potential market beyond those for whom they can serve a legitimate purpose.

It’s okay to look…alright, it is a nice little piece of encouragement to a single person who has been reluctant to try out on-line dating services.  After all, the process of checking out the match.com site is a fairly anonymous one, as far as I know, I’ve never tried it.  So, for the single and reluctant soul, this is a gentle way of saying “what’s the harm in taking a look, its okay.” 

I’ll buy that, and will concede that the slogan is effective.

It’s okay to look…so, maybe the slogan is also a not so subtle invitation to someone who may be involved in a dating relationship, but who is, shall we say, not all that content.  Is the message then “what’s the harm in just checking out what other possibilities exist?  After all, it is an anonymous process.  No commitments required.  And your current relationship doesn’t have to find out…it’s only a “look”, and that’s okay.” 

I’ll maybe buy that one too.  They are is still acting as a service for those who are single.

It’s okay to look…reminds me of some of the men that I worked with when I was just out of college.  They were all older than I was and I don’t remember if I was married at the time or not, but I do know THEY WERE.  I distinctly remember them “admiring” women both in the office and out in public.  I write admiring in quotation marks because I could just have easily described their “admiration” as lusting, particularly when their viewing was accompanied with commentary.  When I would chide them about being married, one of their favorite responses was something to the effect of “just because you’ve ordered, doesn’t mean you can’t look at the menu.”   Ha ha ha, (slap knee), that was a really good one.  It’s okay to look would just be another way of saying the same thing they did, wouldn’t it?

It’s okay to look…was this an intentional double entente, or just an interpretation that I have taken completely out of context?  Was match.com’s intention to limit the intended effective reach of this message to singles who could benefit from on-line dating services?  Or will match.com take the business from any place they can get it?  I suspect that they would say that they don’t get into the moral decisions that necessarily are joined with “dating” and I suspect they would deny any attempt to expand the reach for their service to include married persons.  Nevertheless, one thing I am certain about, for some people, it’s NOT okay to look.

3 Responses to “It’s Okay To Look”

  1. Brandon says:

    A friend of mine has had conversations with guys at work like this…guys who claim to be Christians. When he confronts them about it, they say, “I’m just a guy, alright? I can’t stop being a guy!” But I’m glad my friend is there to tell them that being a guy definitely entails attraction to women, but it does not have to entail sin.

  2. Chuck says:

    Yes Brandon. Thanks for confirming and expanding on the thought.

    While I cannot guarantee it with absolute certainty, (having only experienced life as a man), I suspect that attraction degenerating into lust, is not limited to men alone. And my questioning match.com’s slogan is irrespective of their marketing strategy or possibly veiled intention. The slogan has the potential to play on that aspect of our fallen nature. We must ALL guard against it. Because, it is the attraction (or “look” if you will, referring back to the slogan), that leads to the sin. Just consider David LOOKING at Bathsheba bathing in 2 Sam 11: 2. And so as to give some equal time to women, consider Potiphar’s wife in Gen 39. While Joseph resisted her advances, vs 7 says that “she cast her eyes on Joseph.” That is what started the fire of her lust.

    It seems that “the look” clearly precedes the sin…for both genders.

  3. keithmoore1 says:

    As someone who has logged in some Match.com dating time, I’ve confirmed with women I’ve met that married men do use online dating sites to test infidelity. It’s not wildly common, fortunately, but it happens.

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