I should be embarrassed to have had as long and unsuccessful experience with online dating as I have had, but I’m not, it’s just another channel to meet people and it seems every channel is as mundane as the next right now, or maybe I’m just getting jaded. Anyway, what has this got to do with customer experience?
Well, match.com has been pissing me off for some time, most recently with it’s mandate that you can’t be wearing sunglasses in your “main” picture. This is just an indication of match’s authoritarian view of its customers, you’d better listen “because match knows best”. Lot’s of guidelines, lots of bureaucracy, and everyone’s profile sounds the same as everyone else’s, I mean, who doesn’t like good food and watching movies. Somehow matches control over the “profile” creation process has stunted their customers creativity as opposed to enhanced, encouraged or motivated it.
Enter consumating.com, a dating concept from Austin, and in keeping with Austin’s freewheeling attitudes, you don’t get the feeling that this is a dating site that will try and squeeze you into a palatable shape for the rest of the internet community to consume. One of the interesting aspects of consumating is it is a dating site that asks questions of the community on a regular basis, in some ways, encouraging its customers to contribute to a community blog on different topics, so instead of a stagnant profile to get to know people you get to see their answers to some more interesting questions. For example, the week that the crazy woman escaped to las vegas and faked rape to escape a wedding, consumating.com asked “what would you do to get out of a wedding?” And, yes, people do use swear words on the site, and also give some answers that might lead you to believe that they are sociopaths, but at least it gives these profiles a human voice and a chance to cut through the veneer that most of us have.
And of course note the obligitory Folksonomy, although this is the first folksonomy I’ve seen that contains the term “mexicancandy”