Genius Idea: Dating site driven by human referrals

My old pal Gavin Baker came up with this idea which I thought was amazing: a dating site that makes it easy for you to suggest possible matches to your friends.

Most dating sites have you try to teach a computer everything about you so that it can match your profile with somebody else’s profile. This may work relatively well with Netflix and movies, but I think people are somewhat more complicated, and it might very well be that humans are better at getting to know humans and at discerning which humans may be a good match for one another. Also, isn’t it a little less weird to get set up on a date with someone who is at least peripherally connected to your social circle rather than a total stranger?

Why isn’t there a dating site that makes it easy for you to recommend people to your friends and acquaintances who seem like they might be good matches for one another? Gavin drew a parallel with Linked In, which makes it easy for people to recommend one another for job openings and other business relationships. There ought to be something similar for romantic relationships. (“I think it should be called ‘Linked in for Love'”, Gavin says. I say “That sounds like an excellent trademark infringement lawsuit heading your way.”)

This ought to be relatively easy to do with a Facebook app, for instance… Facebook relatively recently added a feature that lets you “Suggest Friends for ___”, i.e. to recommend one Facebook friend to another (scroll all the way to the bottom of a friend’s profile to see the link). It should be easy to write an app which adds a few bells and whistles to that functionality in order to make it better for the purpose of recommending romantic relationships.

What do you think? Is there anything like this already in existence? If not, should it exist? Or is there a fatal flaw in this concept which I am missing?

3 thoughts on “Genius Idea: Dating site driven by human referrals

  1. do you sparkbliss?

    My attempts to discover meaningful companionship using popular online dating sites proved feeble and lacked privacy. As a result, I founded Sparkbliss[dot]com which leverages what has always been the best way to meet people – introductions from your circle of friends. In fact, “63% of married couples met through a network of friends,” according to a recent Temple University study. As it clearly improves your chances of finding your soul mate, why not let friends and family play matchmaker?

    Sparkbliss[dot]com works like this: each member decides who can view his/her bio and thus makes romantic introductions on their behalf; members have complete control over whom they invite into their network. In an era where the online dating market appears largely satisfied, Sparkbliss is remarkable by using a private social network to bring together individuals of similar interests, backgrounds and values.

    • Re: do you sparkbliss?

      Well, thanks for answering the question of whether such a thing already exists, even if you phrased your answer in the form of an advertisement.

  2. My boyfriend has joked that should branch out into dating:

    “People who dated Nelson also dated [username here]!
    People who viewed Nelson’s profile ended up dating [username #2]!”

    By the way I forgot to call you, but my week is ridiculous. Um, how about dinner Friday? I’m having an outing with friends for my birthday.

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