I disagree and agree with your post at the same time. I believe guys should pay for everything in the beginning as long as it's small. Whether its the gas to go to a free event, coffee, or walking around the park and getting a small snack. The point should be to go on a "information date" as you call it, and then get them back to your place as soon as possible. I don't think its very masculine to take a girl to a movie or a nice dinner and then ask her to split the bill. You might as well skip the headache and take her somewhere where there is no pressure on her and a place that won't hurt you wallet as well.