Speed Dating, as a single word, is a registered trademark of Aish Ha Torah.

Speed dating, as two separate words, is often used as a generic term for similar events.

As reported by the BBC in the Science of Love, it only takes between 90 seconds to 4 minutes of face-to-face interaction to determine attraction, which gives speed dating an advantage over online dating.

The time limit ensures that a participant will not be stuck with a boorish match for very long, and prevents participants from monopolizing one another's time.

On the other hand, a couple that decides they are incompatible early on will have to sit together for the duration of the round.

Most speed dating events match people at random, and participants will meet different "types" that they might not normally talk to in a club.

On the other hand, the random matching precludes the various cues, such as eye contact, that people use in bars to preselect each other before chatting them up.

Men and women are rotated to meet each other over a series of short "dates" usually lasting from three to eight minutes depending on the organization running the event.

At the end of each interval, the organizer rings a bell, clinks a glass, or blows a whistle to signal the participants to move on to the next date.

Many speed dating events are targeted at particular communities: for example, LGBT people, polyamorists, Some feel that speed dating has some obvious advantages over most other venues for meeting people, such as bars, discotheques, etc.

in that everybody is purportedly there to meet someone, they are grouped into compatible age ranges, it is time-efficient, and the structured interaction eliminates the need to introduce oneself.

Unlike many bars, a speed dating event will, by necessity, be quiet enough for people to talk comfortably.