Globe and mail online dating
Last year, the company hooked up with popular TV psychologist Dr. Subscribers who pay about a month extra can receive video and audio messages from Dr.
Phil, as well as specialized dating advice."If there's any remaining social stigma to this category, dating online, we wanted to put an end to it once and for all," said Jim Safka, chief executive of Phil -- it doesn't get more mainstream America than that."Match has also copied e Harmony's questionnaire-based matching system in a service called Chemistry, developed with the help of a cultural anthropologist.
of Pasadena, Calif., is fighting back with science.
Founded by psychologist and marriage counselor Neil Clark Warren, the company is best known for its high prices -- a month -- and its questionnaire.
"The better we can make our matching model, the better our business will do," said chief executive Greg Waldorf.
"I look at it as filling a void in the industry." he said.
Like e Harmony or Match's Chemistry service, OKCupid uses a series of questions to identify good matches. Members have submitted about 10,000 questions to OKCupid, ranging from politics and religion to a person's taste in furniture.
"As you answer more and more of these questions," said Yagan, "you personally are creating your own algorithm about what constitutes a good match for you."That algorithm is combined with OKCupid's own mathematical techniques to produce a list of likely new friends.
Safka welcomes customers of all ages, but he said that Match is more aggressively reaching out to aging baby boomers.
"The segment of people who are over 50, that traffic is growing rapidly," Safka said.
Some companies hope to gain a foothold in the dating market by targeting narrow niches -- single Christians, Jews, liberals, or conservatives. But it accepts only unusually good-looking men and women.