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Saftey Tips

Meeting new people is always fun, and bodyworkers tend to be the nicest people! However, just to make sure you don't find yourself in an awkward, or even unsafe, situation we would like to offer a few tips for your utmost safety and benefit of this site.

Firstly, please be aware that we do not, and can not, validate member profiles. Although we strive to be a professional site for bodyworkers and massage hobbyists, there is always the possibility of someone of less than savory qualities joining. Treat your new contact in the same way as might treat someone you've just met at, say, a bodywork faire or seminar. They're probably who they say they are, but they're still a stranger. You should confirm what they say before meeting privately.

Do not disclose your e-mail address - keep all correspondence on-site

We do not advise members to disclose their e-mail and take their conversations off-site for many reasons. Keeping your conversation on-site has these benefits:

  1. If a member becomes annoying you can easily block them (via the block button.)
  2. If a member sends you an inappropriate message, we have a copy as evidence and we can close their account.
  3. Members can only send you photos that we have approved.
  4. In the rare case of a fraud or scam (pretty rare but it can happen) we have evidence in the form of an e-mail exchange and can close their account.
  5. On-site communication keeps people polite since they know if they cross the line they can be reported.

Knowing this, tricksters often try to take their conversation off-site quickly to avoid detection. They will often pressure you with "my membership will end soon" or "it's easier for me to correspond off-site". For your safety and peace of mind, please keep all correspondence on-site.

Note: Many want your e-mail to send you their photos to maintain their privacy, they claim. However, we already have a Private Gallery exactly for that purpose. Tell the member to upload their Private Gallery and send you a photo pass. There's no need to e-mail photos.

Don't be so quick to disclose personal information

Exchange a few e-mails until you feel comfortable with your new friend. Don't disclose your telephone or home address too quickly.

Do reveal and request information

Things you should ask or verify of your new acquaintance:

  • Ask for their name, and if professional, their office address and office telephone number.
  • If your locale licenses bodywork professionals, does your new acquaintance have a license number or are they operating illegally?
    • We provide a Verify License link for many states in the member profile. Use it!
    • See our Bodywork Licensing information page.
  • Is their Bodywork School legitimate or one they made up? Does it even exist!?
  • What are their goals? What are they looking for?
  • Is anything left blank in their profile? Ask!
  • Verify what they say, perhaps with your phone book, bodywork directory, or via the internet, before you set a meeting date.

Red flags!

If it sounds strange, maybe it is. Some things to be concerned about:

  • Are they stated as Professional or Student? Verify that they have a valid bodywork school, bodywork school city, and a reasonable number of formal training hours. You can use the internet to verify a school and location.
  • Do they claim to be proficient in an wildly large or diverse number of modalities with little formal training?
  • Does your state require bodywork licensing yet they're professional and they don't have a license?
  • You've corresponded by e-mail a few times but is certain information given inconsistent, such as where they live, work, their age, their occupation, what they practice, or their goals?
  • Do direct questions you've asked remain unanswered?

Look at their Photos

A photo reveals much. If they've chosen not to display a photo at MassageExchange.com, ask them why not! Then ask your new friend to upload a photo or two of themselves. Photos can be very revealing about a person.

Declining Graciously is OK!

Perhaps after a few e-mails, one of you feels there is no mutual match. Declining (graciously, of course) is OK! Don't let the other party pressure you into something you'd rather not do.

Meet and chat first

Meet at a public coffee or tea house, bookstore, etc. for a chat first. Get to know your new acquaintance before agreeing to meet for a massage.

Do your massage at a known bodywork center if possible

If you're a bodyworker, consider doing the massage at your place of work. If neither of you have employment at a bodywork center, consider renting space at one, and split the cost of course. Many bodywork centers offer massage rooms to the public with tables very inexpensively. Try a web search "massage room hourly rentals" and include your city. Make sure to check if they supply sheets and oil or if you must bring your own.

Beware of meeting in an out of the way or unknown location. It might be in a dangerous neighborhood and should be avoided.

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