Relationships are either inevitable, as Shakespeare would like us to believe, or unavoidable due to financial constraints and needs, as Hugh Hefner has demonstrated. When it comes to the modern-day matchmaking dating sites Match.com and OKCupid, not much is different. They also apparently need a little love and financial support from each other, as Match.com acquired OKCupid on February 2, 2011 for $50 million. And so, for better or for worse, until death do they now part — or at least until someone with more money comes along.
Sounds about right.
The really sad thing about this union is OKCupid is similar to the really cool guy that always has something interesting to say about psychology while hanging out at a bar without ever being a total jerk. No one ever wants that guy to get married — especially to a totally manipulative you-know-what. (And as previous customer of Match.com, I can say it fits that bill perfectly.) OKCupid is well-known for its blog, OKTrends, which compiles “original research and insights from OKCupid, the best dating site on Earth.” Match.com is subscription based, and OKCupid is mostly free to use. The OKTrends blog on OKCupid generates buzz every month from posts about relationships and general human psychology using real data from OKCupid users. This translates into many, many ad views — and presumably into glitzy ad revenue for that “you-know-what” that acquired OKCupid.
“We know that many people who start out on advertising-based sites ultimately develop an appetite for the broader feature set and more committed community, which subscription sites like Match.com and Chemistry.com offer, creating a true complimentary relationship between our various business models,” says Greg Blatt, CEO of IAC, which operates Match.com.
Luckily, if Match.com is only in it for the money, we will hopefully still find ourselves glued to the viral blog for the insightful yet hilarious posts for which OKCupid is best known. Although CEO of OKCupid Sam Yagin has said that OKCupid and Match.com will continue to operate independently, it will be interesting if Match.com decides to restrict access to user data for OKTrend’s blog posts. This could result in less than financially effective blogs on OKTrends, and Match.com may ultimately regret the acquisition in the end.
Will the acquisition of OKCupid by Match.com change your use of dating Web sites?