Let me preface this by saying I don't use dating sites. My friends use them all the time, but I've never entertained the idea. Call me old fashioned. Having said that, I've noticed lots of people getting mad when men put up fake heights on their profiles, especially when short men do so. If a 6'3 guy claims 6'5, women don't really care since he's tall either way.
If tall stature wasn't so coveted, no man would bother lying about his height anyway (notice how the fake height is always taller). You reap what you sow. Those who claim "it's not the height I dislike, it's the lie" are full of shit. Don't worry though, they concede eventually and admit it is about the height, because shorter = less attractive. It's just different. Fact of the matter is that most people think shortness is inferior. That is not debatable, so when a guy shows up and he's shorter than advertised, the person meeting him feels cheated, like they ordered some product online (for free no less) and got a knockoff. That's why they get angry. I remember once seeing a guy order this cheap product online, but the company messed up and sent him the expensive version. Was he mad he didn't get what he ordered? Of course not.
Claiming to be mad at the lie is just to save face and cover up how superficial this whole thing is. If I threw a fit because some girl tricked me with her makeup and push up bra (happened before), people would tell me to quit being childish. Imagine a guy starts dating a girl he met online, and she later washes off all her makeup and reveals she has tons of acne. Then he kicks her out the door because her initial photos showed none of that. Ridiculous, who would defend him? Of course, when it comes to male stature, lying about one's height is an abyssal sin, and proves how the liar has an awful personality. Still, I'd bet most girls wouldn't be mad if some guy claimed 5'7 then showed up as 5'9, just like how a poor guy suddenly revealing he was rich wouldn't get him kicked out of bed. I've seen rich men literally "start a relationship with a lie" by claiming to be poor, but of course, when women find out these guys are loaded, they like them even more. It's not the lying itself, because otherwise every lie would put women off. What matters is whether or not the reveal is positive or negative in their eyes. Most women view short men as a negative like being poor, which is why they get pissed off. They just don't have the gall to admit it because it sounds too strict.
The fact that so many people have the same height requirements/preferences is the real travesty here. We don't go around filtering out one specific eye color, for example. No other benign trait is auto rejected as much as short male stature, online or otherwise, so who can blame men for pretending to be taller? Lie or not, the really short guys usually get no dates. If some 5'3 man puts up his real height, he's auto rejected 99% of the time (the 1 percent is when a woman looks past his oh-so disgusting flaw of being a short man). If he claims 5'5 and gets caught, he gets no date, but he wouldn't have gotten one anyway.
When the options are so narrow and limiting, some men become amoral and desperate. Can't say I blame them for turning to the dark side. I've seen tall hobos and tall murderers get loads of fangirls, so either lying about one's height is worse than all that, or everyone's overrating honesty and morality. One could even say many lie about valuing personality over height.
Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase used to say everyone has a price. Change "price" to "height requirement" and it just depends how low women will go. 6'0, 5'9, 5'6... Never seen it go lower than that, online or in real life. When people quibble over a couple inches, that might provide an inkling as to why a 5'4 guy might claim 5'6. Again, it's the shorter height that puts women off, not the lying itself. Why else would women obsess over an inch or two of height in the first place if personality was so much more important to them? If liars were so unattractive, humanity would be dead.
Update: Seemingly unrelated, but follow me here. I came across a thread on reddit about women lying about partner count. Quote: "You know why she hid it? Because men can't handle the fact that women have slept with other ppl before them."
Short men are basically judged/rejected like promiscuous women are, only without the protection of phrases like "slut shaming," and it's much harder to hide height than something immaterial like partner count. Most of all, there's no choice in being a short man, as partner count isn't even a genetic trait unlike height. Now wonder why any man has to lie about his stature.
Another quote: "Why your boyfriend would need the heads up from his 20something
girlfriend that "oh just so you know I used to go to nightclubs and had
some one night stands" . What's the weird life he lives that he would
need the heads up on that?"
Why do women need a heads up on a man's height before meeting him? I truly hope half the people in this thread view height the exact same way.