Kathryn's Blog

I wish I could recommend eHarmony, True.com or PerfectMatch, but I can’t!

Why are the three top sites that potentially have so much to offer so flawed? All three say that they are “relationship sites”—places for serious singles to meet serious partners. Serious means wanting a long-term, committed relationship or marriage. eHarmony has led the way in differentiating “dating sites” from “relationship sites”—Match.com would be a traditional dating site, where you can meet for friendship or casual dating as well as more serious, long term relationships. All three use some kind of “compatibility testing” for matching singles—long sets of questions that each poster fills out, and then the sites’ computers match one with another, using some sort of formula. All sounds good, right? No wonder so many are flocking to join up.

But I’ve got reservations about eHarmony, and I am not alone. Jennifer Hahn writes extensively about eHarmony’s founder Dr. Neil Clark Warren’s evangelist Christian roots in her article “Love Machines” for LA City Beat. I, like Hahn, think there are lots of problems in the site and how they match singles. eHarmony’s largest black mark is that the site will not work with Gays and Lesbians. And it doesn’t take much of a Google search to come up with more fodder. The site also TURNS DOWN one in five applicants: Can you imagine getting this message after you screwed up your courage to sign on in the first place, and then spent several hours filling out the questionnaire?

“Unfortunately, we are not able to make our profiles work for you. Our matching system is not suitable for about 20% of potential users, so 1 in 5 people simply would not benefit from our service. We hope that you understand that we regret our inability to provide service for you at this time. “

I’ve written plenty lately about True.com and their questionable practices. Here’s the message you get on their home page:

“Married people will be prosecuted. Because we care, we screen members against public records to check marital status.”

Isn’t that cheery? And for some odd reason, , not women, for posting. That is really strange, since these “relationship sites” tend to attract far more women than men.

That’s PerfectMatch‘s problem (eHarmony’s too) and does PerfectMatch ever have it bad! PerfectMatch is now offering men two months for free, just to get more to sign up!

PerfectMatch’s ratios are now two women for every guy. Well, at least they say so. Getting gender ratios for other dating sites is nearly impossible. I must say, that other than the poor numbers for women, I have no other complaints about PerfectMatch. Pepper Schwartz is their resident expert and designed their compatibility profiling. I’ve known of Pepper Schwartz for years and respected her work, so I am assuming she is doing a good job here, too. But if the guys would only sign up there… Hey, guys, it’s free, for heaven’s sake! And the numbers are great, for you, anyway. Git on over!



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