Mark Gritter (markgritter) wrote,
Mark Gritter
markgritter

Federated Online Dating?

The WaPo reports on services that will make the initial contacts on online dating services for you. Holy Cyrano! People want the larger selection of online dating, but a more matchmaker-style, hands-off way to arrange a first date. Who wants to spend time sending a lot of cold-calls when one-third of them will not garner any response?

Leaving aside how you might feel about negotiating a first date with an outsourced proxy, it seems undesirable for the online dating sites to allow this (extremely profitable!) sideline to be captured by outside firms. One could imagine different tiers of service, through different front-ends of course, that tried to bridge the spectrum between the hands-on and hands-off approaches. Or is somebody already doing that? One could imagine that "specialty" dating sites (specific population, additional services, whatever) are cross-listing with "general" dating sites; there'd certainly be an advantage to both sides getting a larger pool to pick from.

There does seem to be some sort of need here... and yet, having the dating service company lie about who the message is really from does seem unethical. (Not that some of them haven't been accused of going even further and sending messages from purely fictional persons.)
Tags: fiction, internet
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