10 Jul /12

Language of Love

online dating languageThe Eurovision Song Contest has long been Europe’s grand stage for dreamy pop songs and passionate love ballads. At the 2012 Song Contest, however, the Irish entry “Language of Love,” performed by Una Gibney and David Shannon came in only at a disappointing 19th place. Similarly, Great Britain’s “Love will set you free” and Hungary’s “Sound of our Hearts” reached disappointing results, finishing in 24th and 25th place respectively. Even the amorous Greek contribution “Aphrodisiac” couldn’t ignite the jurors’ excitement and came in 17th. Among the songs that carried a love references in their title only the Turkish entry “Love me back” was able to break into the top ten with a respectable 7th place finish.

While we certainly expect music from every genre to feature lyrics about the wows and woes of love, lust, and passion we are more apprehensive in applying romantic language in our own lives. We effortlessly hum to the tune of the most overdramatic love song on the radio, but rarely compose a romantic sonnet for our husbands and wives, boyfriends or girlfriends (and we certainly do not perform said composition under their bedroom window). In short, the etiquette of romantic chivalry has, indeed, become relegated to the space of musical or cinematic entertainment and almost completely vanished from the realm of everyday interaction. Only on special occasions do we call upon the romantic rituals to infuse our relationships with the proverbial romantic spark and sent a bouquet of flowers or plan a candlelight dinner.

Today’s relationships are increasingly formed by following other rules of engagement; namely the etiquette of online dating. More and more couples first “meet” each other in the virtual space of an online dating site. Here, in this hedonistically guarded space, people rarely act like romantic troubadours as this behavior would create suspicions of insincerity among other users. Instead, most people are concerned with tightly guarding their true emotions as they do not want to share too much personal feelings too early and thereby make themselves vulnerable. After all, the idea of participating in virtual dating is to be able to protect oneself from unwanted responses and to be able to carefully control the interaction with a potential partner; exactly the opposite from spontaneous romantic exclamations of emotions that we admire in the protagonists of romantic comedies and dreamy pop songs. But we have learned that expressing our feelings too exuberantly can lead not only to terrible disappointment but also leaves us vulnerable.

As a result of the desire to control the output of personal information and emotions, the language used by both online dating service providers and users is therefore markedly different from the language employed by dreamy pop songs performed at the Eurovision. It also distinguishes itself from personal conversations through its deliberate tone and emphasis on accuracy, that is, of course, when we talk about sincere agencies and users. As dating sites are concerned with creating a sense of authenticity and accuracy to assure its users of the legitimacy of the romantic encounter offered, the language employed mirrors these goals.

While you will still have to decide for yourself if the world of online dating language suits you in your romantic pursuits, we can provide expert translations of your content that reflects the nuances and peculiarities of the target language while taking into considerations the regional differences that shape the dating culture of a specific audience.

For owners and operators of dating sites and services, we offer multilingual translations, localisations and DTP services to help you take your services to a global audience.