If you’re not having much luck with traditional dating sites and you’re not a hardcore Star Trek fan, what’s a smart single gal to do? If you’re Noriko Higashi, a programmer at a social gaming company, you post a request for a boyfriend on the social coding platform GitHub. Gotta play to your target audience, right?
App for That
We’ve all been there: stuck in the middle of a terrible first date with a boring or psychopathic or worse–luddite!–companion, with no way out. If you’re a terrible liar or none of your friends is available to make that fake emergency call to your cell, eHarmony is here to help. The Globe and Mail reports that the online dating service now has a mobile app in the iTunes store called “Bad Date Rescue” that will help you make your getaway, stat.
The whole system is surprisingly detailed. You can choose an interval of time at which to schedule the fake phone call, which purports to actually have a real voice on the other end. You can also specify which emergency you want to fake: your mom calling to say your sister is in labor, your neighbor to tell you your apartment is flooded or your boss to say there’s a work emergency.
Have you ever wondered why there wasn’t a Yelp but for people? Neither did we, but apparently there is, and it’s called Dirty Bubble. If you’re not turned off by the name, just wait until you hear what it does.
Dirty Bubble fancies itself as “a place for people to rate, share and review their previous relationships and hookups,” and allows users to make profiles—not for themselves—but for their exes. Then, would-be suitors can read reviews and see how many stars their potential date got in categories like sanity, generosity and hygiene. “Why?” the introductory video rhetorically asks, “Wouldn’t you want to know a little about someone’s background or personality before dating them?” Actually, no, we wouldn’t—or at least we don’t want to hear about it the same way we want to read reviews about the Lumia 900 or the new iPad.
Love in the Time of Algorithms
Women in the market for a banker boyfriend have a wealth of resources that tell them what they might be in for. The short-lived, but incredibly practical Dating A Banker Anonymous blog, for one, was a valuable recession-era compendium of tips on navigating tricky emotional terrain like what happens when they cut up your credit card or cancel reservations. With New York’s nascent tech scene, however, it’s harder to know how to proceed. Thankfully, Page Six magazine is here to help women
in search of lasting love who want to “date the next Mark Zuckerberg.”
Today, the magazine posted profiles of five bachelors (sample pun: ”There’s a chapp for that.”) from the startup ecosystem: Anoop Ranganath from Foursquare, Dave Altarescu from Spotify, Rob Fishman from Kingfish Labs, Trip Cowin from Basno, and Spencer Lazar from Spontaneously. If parsed correctly, the list also reveals some handy clues as to what your love life might look like if you happen to land one of these “chapps.”
Love in the Time of Algorithms
Celebrated Elle advice columnist and former “Saturday Night Live” writer, E. Jean Carroll is kind of a riot. Or so Betabeat discovered when we called up the 69-year-old author and serial Internet entrepreneur last night to talk startups as she was “having my wine.” Maybe it’s the red hair or the emphatic voice modulation, but she sorta sounded like a sultrier Carol Burnett.
E. Jean’s first startup—2002′s GreatBoyfriends.com, which let women recommend a good catch they were willing to throw back—was purchased by The Knot in 2005. Then came the ill-fated Facebook spoof called Catch27.com that let you make online trading cards of yourself and trade your friends for hotter friends. Last year there was FLAAB, where users made a bet to see if they could lose weight and paid up if they failed.
A week ago, she launched a new dating venture called Tawkify that forgoes online profiles for a brief questionnaire, photo, and a chance to let E. Jean—personally!—set you up for a blind phone date. No surprise to members of the New York Tech Meetup list-serve who were recently treated to a lively back-and-forth when E. Jean requested help getting good men to sign up.
Group dating service Ignighter has closed $2.42 million in funding as it works to finish off an even larger series B. For now it’s clear the company is looking to raise at least $4 million in total, although that number may be low.
CEO Adam Sachs declined to comment but we can say that Somak Chattopadhyay of Tribeca Ventures and David Cohen of Techstars are listed as directors on the new filing.
Ignighter is a Techstars grad and has raised $4.2 million to date. It’s perhaps most fascinating for finding success in India. Their idea for group dates was a mild success in America, but a huge hit in India, where more modest social norms mean group dates are more common for young, unmarried people. “Here we are, a few Jewish guys sitting in Union Square, and we might have accidentally revolutionized the dating scene in India,” Mr. Sachs told the NY Times.
Makeouts To Go
When OkCupid co-founder Sam Yagan announced yesterday that the company’s mobile app would now let users connect with members “near you, right now, on the fly,” he did so with no small measure of chutzpah. Along with revealing a “Twitter-like” broadcast feature to plan your night and an integration with Foursquare’s venue database, the headline for the press release came out swinging at the competition: “OkCupid Goes Local with Mobile Dating that People Will Actually Use.” Zing!
Betabeat got Mr. Yagan on the phone to find out what exactly he meant by that, what makes OkCupid Locals any different, a time before smartphones (yes, Virginia, it did exist), and why we may soon see the resurrection of CrazyBlindDate, a dating service before its time.
Snap Interactive, creator of the popular Facebook dating app AreYouInterested, is not like most New York startups. For one thing, the firm has never raised a dime from venture capital firms or angel investors. Secondly, it’s a public company, traded as a penny stock on the OTC BB. And last but certainly not least, the Read More