OkCupid Founder Says His Dating Site Has Created A Blind-Date Algorithm

Sam Yagan

Photo: Sam Yagan

When OkCupid got its start, it didn’t have a lot of fancy psychologists or researchers on staff to tell them what made for a successful match. So they decided to rely on the data users gave them instead.At Business Insider’s IGNITION conference in New York Tuesday, OkCupid cofounder Sam Yagan said the company uses data to understand its users, gain insights, and use that data for marketing purposes. 

Yagan touted the accuracy of OkCupid’s algorithm, claiming that the company knows “quantitatively and anecdotally” that its users find better, more compatible matches on OkCupid than on other dating sites. (Of course, pretty much every dating site makes that claim.)

What’s more interesting are the ways OkCupid has yet to deploy that data in new products.

For example, Yagan said OkCupid could use its data to set up a date between two people who won’t know what the other looks like until they meet in person—your classic blind-date scenario, but arranged by algorithms rather than acquaintances.

All users would do is enter the type of person they want to meet (e.g. age, height, race) and specify when they want to meet. OkCupid’s algorithm would then match them with the appropriate person and time of the date.

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