See, now this is a headline that CEOs of static dating websites the world over will just not want to read. Following years of trying to shake of the stigma that has prevented many a single desperate for love from entering their credentials into an online dating facility, the moment that they finally achieve that goal, with 2012 officially seeing the death of dating site dementors, they are being told that static dating websites are dead and that the future of dating is on mobile devices, instead.
Don’t know about you, but at the drop of this news you can almost hear the post-stigmata party being prematurely ended with a solitary parp of a trumpet. And hear that one technician laughing gutsily alone, the news not yet filtered through to her, as the scientists, still in their white coats , turn silently as one before being ushered back below ground into a sterile environment to start recoding the dating site so that people can have the same experience on their Smartphone as they do on a static online dating site. The laughter finally stops.
These CEOs will claim a small victory, though. And so they should – it has taken years to cast off the cloak it adorned at the public’s behest. Now more than ever, with ten percent of US citizens hitting dating sites every month, the impact of the medium they have developed patiently in their underground laboratories has changed the way the world dates forever.
CNBC in the US recently hosted Love at first byte – an insider view into the unseen world of online dating. What they discovered was not, as one would expect, a world of fluffy pink pillows and love hearts adorning every wall. Contrarily, the image portrayed envisions a chaotic place, a world of psychologists’ couches, main-frame computers, blackboards with lengthy equations chalked onto the slate, forever being rubbed out and perfected. And IT guys with a hand on the socket, awaiting the ‘turn in off and on again’ request that’s a short moment away. Stephen King, stretched on one of the couches, soaking it all in before he turns the scenaro into another million+ best-seller.
It is these armies of boffins and IT technicians that have brought the world of online dating to the fore, piggybacking on the rise of hyper-connectivity in a world where everyone has at least two social media accounts, accessible from Android, Blackberry and iOS platforms. And now that the men in white coats have finally cracked it, brought their paymasters that tag of ‘social acceptance’ to the niche, technology has outpaced them.
If you can download an app, and there are many that, utilising GPS, can even ping you whilst you’re out and about to let you know that someone else from your dating site is in the vicinity, carrying a hand-held device or not having to put aside time that eats into your night to find someone is a far more productive way for the single masses to date than the alternative.
The party’s over for the time being for the dating site scientists, but you can bet that they’ll be back with something soon that’ll change the game, again. With $2bn – and growing – up for grabs, there’s a lot at stake for the men in the little white coats.