But laws and regulations have to deal with the generality of industries and businesses to which they apply and our statutory regulators are often thinly stretched and not able to do much other than react to consumer harms.
This is generally evident from the marketing material, site format and the profiles permitted.
The ODA position is not making a moral judgement with this decision but recognising the fundamentally different characteristic and purposes of services.
This can create uncertainties, vulnerabilities as people hopefully move into those new friendships and relationships.
The feeling within the sector in the last few years was that it was time we took some collective responsibility for our market and our users as well as exercising responsibility as individual service providers.
There was and is no wish to run the ODA as a closed shop.
Membership is open to all those who commit themselves to the principles in the ODA Code of Practice and who can demonstrate this commitment to our policies and processes.
In summer 2013 a group of dating site providers took and acted on the advice that this is a market where players should not rely solely on the framework of privacy, data and consumer law to protect the market and those in it.
The law and regulations applicable to the sector clearly matter and should be respected.
Online dating in the UK had moved from being a niche activity to a part of everyday life.