He or she swipes left on the screen to dismiss the potential date or swipes right to indicate interest.With the swipe, Tinder turned what was once a time-consuming slog through online dating résumés into an addictive game of instant judgment—and further removed the risk from dating with a double opt-in. If only one person expresses interest, the other person never knows about it.The designers walk the couple through a series of inspiration boards with images ranging from playful to sexy to Brooklyn, to get a better sense of the brand Jess Deckinger describes as “warm and fuzzy,” and “a cooler way to do dating.” As the meeting ends, one designer sums up the Deckingers visual preferences succinctly: “So, what’s the exact opposite of the aesthetic?” This second iteration of online dating is pretty much the exact opposite of At the time the feature was introduced, about 3.6 percent of Hinge’s users were married, engaged, or “in a relationship.” For comparison, recent research from Global Web Index estimated 42 percent of Tinder users are in relationships.Of Hinge’s approach, Mc Leod says, “I think women appreciate the accountability, and men appreciate the transparency.” Coffee Meets Bagel narrows the dating pool even further.
In 2003, Deckinger was running a speed-dating company when his friend and cofounder, Adele Tongish, posted his profile to a now-defunct website that promised online dating with a twist: Women recommended their male friends to other women. Today, the couple has three young girls and a new Boston-based online dating startup, Jess, Meet Ken.The online dating world of the late 1990s and early 2000s had the dim lighting of a first-date spot: In their online profiles, women got younger and men got taller.As the stigma of online dating faded, the idea arose that the Internet could make dating easier for everyone.Neither company lasted long, but the computer- assisted dating model they promoted had a lot in common with the early days of the online dating sector in the mid-1990s.First came the questionnaires and the ability to sift through the answers quickly, filtering potential dates by characteristics like age or location.(In 2013 the Pew Research Center found that 59 percent of Americans believed online dating was a good way to meet people, a 15 percent increase from a 2005 survey.) All of these online dating companies were selling similar things to different niches of the dating world.This first iteration of online dating gave singles access to a huge pool of potential dates, one much larger than their own pre-Facebook social networks. Users posted their profiles under pseudonyms and provided only the information they wanted to reveal.Later came the algorithms, which used the information provided to predict the best matches, automatically showing users the potential dates they were most likely to find attractive.Match.com, which got its start in 1995 when only 14 percent of American adults used the Internet, began to move online dating into the mainstream.f you squint, you can find an early prototype of the online dating phenomenon at Harvard in 1965.That’s when David Dewan (MBA 1969) launched Contact Incorporated, in fierce competition with another Harvard startup, Operation Match.