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When time is up, the coordinator will ring a bell, blow a whistle, or clink a glass, at which point the participants switch seats to meet the next person.
After the “daters” have done a full rotation and met one another, each individual will write a list of who he or she would like to see again.
If two participants have written down each other’s names, the event organizer will forward the contact information to both parties.
(The idea is that the participants will not feel pressure to accept or request contact information face to face.) The first organized speed-dating event took place in 1998 in Beverly Hills, California.
It is a formalized process in which the participants are broken up into pairs and rotate partners every 3-8 minutes (depending on the event).