According to the press release, Dating will be a separate feature of the current service. If you choose to opt-in, it will then recommend profiles based on your own interests and preferences.
From there you can reach out to potential partners including friends who’ve secretly selected you as their Secret Crush.
“Facebook Dating makes it easier to find love through what you like — helping you start meaningful relationships through things you have in common, like interests, events and groups. It takes the work out of creating a dating profile and gives you a more authentic look at who someone is.”
In other words, Dating = Facebook + profile suggestions. Not very original. So why don’t people just use Facebook as is?
Presumably, the company wants to coddle users into a super safe environment for the romantically-inclined. More likely it’s a way to harvest and sell dating specific data.
Either way, give credit where credit is due. Taking the ‘work’ out of searching through profiles on your own sure is convenient. They might as well just tell us who to date and we can skip over all this nonsense.
It’s Time to Crush the Opposition
The dating industry is already a crowded space with stiff competition from the likes of Tinder, Bumble, and POF. Facebook may be late to the party but the celebration started at its house. Tinder, for example, has an estimated 57 million users worldwide.
Facebook, on the other hand, recorded 200 million single profiles in its 2.1 billion user-base. The real problem, however, is the potential conflict of interest its API data poses.
Other dating apps often rely on Facebook for logins and profile information. Indeed, last year a change in policies at Facebook caused Tinder to crash.
The Cambridge Analytica scandal is still fresh in the minds of most users. More recently, the US Court of Appeals slammed Facebook for privacy issues regarding its facial recognition technology. The list goes on.
Facebook doesn’t care about your privacy and it never will. The publicly owned organization is in the business of making money first, and social connection a distant second.
Will Facebook Dating be successful? Sadly, most likely. That doesn’t mean you should use it though. The app is now available in the US and a limited number of other countries where privacy isn’t valued.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this op-ed are solely those of the author and do not represent those of, nor should they be attributed to, CCN Markets.