Reporter: Tim Muffett Reporter: So internet dating might have transformed the way many people look for love and become socially acceptable, but some feel there's one activity an online profile or a newspaper ad can never replicate: good, old-fashioned, flirting. Jean Smith: When we first start doing this, you're going to feel a bit awkward, a bit uncomfortable. Jean Smith: Part of flirting is having the confidence of letting someone know that you're interested. Reporter: Whether it's through an advert or chance encounter, the meeting of two strangers can be life-changing and for this flirting expert at least, if you want it to happen, you've got to seize the day.Jean Smith is an American anthropologist and flirting coach. She has tried online dating, but feels her one-to-one flirting skills need improving. And British people, in my experience, are way too hesitant and so both people leave and think... Why don't you ask him can he recommend a good restaurant around here? Perhaps because the digital world allows us to know people so quickly, we find ourselves in an age of increased real-world paranoia. Once you go out with the person and meet them wherever you’re going to meet them the ancient human brain clicks into action and you court the way we always have.It’s easier to date online than it is to trust the flirting stranger in a coffee shop. But they are introducing sites and they’re algorithms are very useful.
Although lots of people’s lives no longer follow that narrative, so many of our books and films still assume it’s the right way to live.’Fellow historian David Starkey previously likened her representation of Tudor history to a ‘soap opera’ by focusing on the marriages of Henry VIII, adding ‘it’s what you expect from feminised history, the fact that so many of the writers who write about this are women and so much of their audience is a female audience’.
You can’t really be blamed for buying into the hype.
As well as the handful of online emoji lexicons that have emerged over the last few years, Oxford Dictionaries even climbed aboard the pictographic bandwagon when they declared the 'crying with laughter' emoji their 2015 ‘word’ of the year, a move that left a fair few commentators shedding tears of anguish instead of joy.
READ MORE: How you can learn the five love languages But all this brouhaha begs the question; are emojis actually poised to become a lingua franca, or are they just a load of hot air?
One expert with the answers is Neil Cohn, an American linguist based at Tilburg University in The Netherlands.
The online dating industry has been rapidly growing and evolving for over a decade, but it took Tinder to turn it on its head and open it up to millions by gamifying it.