Nancy*, a 47-year-old single mother from North Yorkshire was conned out of over £350,000 that way: “I wasn't comfortable, and then I got so far in I couldn't get myself out, and I didn't want to walk away having lost £50,000 or what-have-you, so you keep going in the hope that you're wrong and this person is genuine,” she explained to the BBC.Nancy is now facing bankruptcy, and although her case is extreme, the average victim of online dating fraud loses £10,000 according to Action Fraud.Her answer is the perfect starting place for my research about a type of guy who brings to mind contradictions.On the one hand, going out with someone who can talk for hours about positioning, SEO and other concepts most civilians only pretend to understand can be difficult.One of the most common techniques is to build up trust with the person by messaging for weeks or even months before suddenly having an emergency - the fake person being mugged but their daughter needing urgent surgery, for example - and asking for money.But then they suddenly need money for rent too, then food, then medical fees, and it can quickly escalate. “You can’t throw a can of PBR in the Mission without hitting a techie,” she says, sitting at the Sycamore Cafe on Mission Street in front of two lamb sliders with fries.I’ve just asked her if she has dated any of the guys who work at startups, Google, Facebook or any other computer-related venue.
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On the other hand, it’s possible to learn something new. Her experience is as limited as mine, but she imagines she would enjoy dating a techie. And I guess they wouldn’t be too dramatic, too emotional.” Mmm, sounds typically male. “The idea of having an office job used to be a nightmare for young people, but now people do it and it’s exciting!
But if it’s true that they’re only a PBR can away, meaning a tech date is likely, what do Mission women think about them? Does the industry attract a certain type of man who is better or less understood by women than, say, the typical “men are from Mars” scenarios? “But one of them was a workaholic, so it was hard to see him anyway.” Interesting. I want more input, so I go to Four Barrel Coffee, where everybody seems to be working on a laptop while drinking expensive latte. What about those stories about techies selling their startups for huge amounts of money? At my next coffee-stop, Muddy’s, architect Meg O’Halloran says: “I don’t date techies. They’re smart and ambitious.” Over the day, the views expressed range from admiration to skepticism. ” She is sitting with her sister Carla, and the two discuss in Spanish whether they would like to date a techie. I felt that at a personal level, we were very different.