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Once you've identified someone whose online dating profile attracts you, the next step is to see if they might feel the same way about you.
If there are several people who interest you, it might be tempting to send off the same quick response to all of them. The e-mail that gets attention is the one that demonstrates that you have read the other person's profile, share some common interests, and match the qualities he or she wants.
If you strike up a correspondence, try to move toward an in-person date fairly quickly. It's easy to project your own desires onto an anonymous person in your in-box. Most people find they don't know for sure whether they're attracted until they see each other in person, so try not to get too emotionally invested until you get to this step.