The Virtual Communication Trap and the iPhone-Way Out

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 32.2 million Americans live alone. They comprise 28 percent of all households. But at the same time almost thousand dating services are generating almost $500.000.000 proving that many singles actively seek a relationship. But for many male singles working in IT it is twice as hard.

Working in IT or in virtual teams means communicating mostly via mail, Twitter etc. and to interact less directly with people. In direct interaction one communicates via eleven channels simultaneously – one verbal and ten nonverbal channels. By using modern communication tools, one reduces these channels mostly to two.

This concludes in the fact that people, who communicate virtually, decrease their ability to communicate successfully when it comes to real life interactions – like in dating scenarios.

A university spin-off from Munich, called Global Emotion GmbH (, tries to solve this issue by using knowledge from Neuroscience and Psychology and implementing it into online and mobile applications.

Diana Weiss, Psychotherapist from Munich: “You would be astonished how emotionally illiterate some people become. They lack basic abilities like detecting correctly how another person feels.”

However, this emotional intelligence is desperately needed when finding a partner.

One example of the Technologies is the iPhone App “Getting Flirty” ( teaching men to decode female micro expressions. The clue is that one can actually learn to detect when the girl is getting annoyed or when she likes what one is saying. By that one can gently steer around obstacles and improve one’s chances for a second date.