So according to Christian Rudder, co-founder of OKCupid, pay sites are dead. We can all put our credit cards away and use free dating services to live happily ever after, right? We don’t have agreements with dating sites; Match and e Harmony are not paying us to spring to their defense. So hopefully our thoughts on the matter are a little more objective.
We have no vested interest; our only aim is to find the best dates possible for our clients.
Here are a few of our arguments to bear in mind along with the ‘grain of salt’ Mr. We ran a preliminary analysis on our figures over this past year to get a breakdown in the differences between our results on free and pay sites.
It stands to reason that if you’ve shelled out your hard-earned dollars for something, you’re going to take it more seriously than if you got it for free.
Free sites are perfect for playing around, people with nothing better to do can set up joke profiles to amuse themselves, or just set one up to see what the online dating rage is all about and then forget about it.
If, on the other hand, every time you open your credit card statement there’s a little sum going to Match or e Harmony, it’s another nudge to push you back to the computer and make sure you’re getting enough bang for your buck. Rudder makes in his argument is that the user stats given out by Match and e Harmony don’t take into account profiles people don’t use anymore, or users who haven’t paid and so can’t receive messages. Free sites have the same problem – probably to an even worse degree.
And, if you’re a savvy online dater, there are ways you can get round it.
The vast majority of the unpaid users on these paid online dating sites are not active.