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If you have experience dating online, you’ve probably used or heard of OkCupid (or OKC as it is affectionally called by its fan base). In 2007, OkCupid was chosen as one of Time magazine’s top 10 websites for dating and its popularity has continued since, enhanced by their creation of an app. However, if you haven’t used the site recently, a lot has changed and not all of it is good for the average dater. The OkCupid you liked a few years ago or ten, is no longer the same.
ABOUT – The History of OkCupid
OkCupid was launched in 2004 by founders Chris Coyne, Christian Rudder, Sam Yagan, and Max Krohn. Each attended Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It was there they originated TheSpark.com and SparkNotes. Those creations included humorous quizzes and personality tests, often based on Myers-Briggs (personality) type matching. SparkMatch incorporated quizzes where compatible Myers-Brigg types could message one another. It was those early origins which eventually inspired the OkCupid we know today. Meanwhile, SparkNotes was sold to the bookselling chain of Barnes And Noble.
OkCupid first gained popularity by word of mouth and online exposure. Users were generally artistic, quirky, self defined “nerds”, or city savvy folk in urban area. Sapiosexual, or attraction to intellect, was a popular theme and remains so today. As time went on and OkCupid became more well known, its popularity increased with everyone from teachers to therapists, or even your next door neighbor (possibly your married neighbor, as the site is for monogamy and non-monogamy).
Though it initially launched as a free service, in 2009 OkCupid created an “A-list” account option with additional features. Though one of OkCupid’s founders once posted negative statements against match.com for its corrupt exploitation of users through its paid service, those comments were eventually removed (“voluntarily”) when OkCupid was acquired for $50 million by IAC/InterActiveCorp (not coincidentally match.com’s operators).
Boost is one option in addition to/instead of becoming an A-List member on OkCupid. Boost shows users more quickly, so you will get a full day of matches in 15 minutes! Ten boosts costs $1.69 each, 5 boosts costs for $1.89 each, or 1 boost for $1.99 each.
Depending on your budget, both A-List Basic and Premium are good. If you plan on using Boost, consider signing up for A-List Premium instead. If you don’t like recurring fees or plan on being on the site long, Boost may work on its own. For basic site improvements try A-List Basic.
Due to its 14 years in existence, OkCupid has had plenty of time to streamline and simplify sign up. Through this they’ve proven themselves a force to be reckoned with in the dating world and their progressive stance on gender identity attracts both traditional and modern daters.
People who use OkCupid usually enjoy it, although user review on dating sites can be mixed and plagued with comments by those who had a negative experience. Overall, sign up through their website is straight forward and the app is even more so. The site makes small additions and improvements to stay competitive.
Online support is now the go-to option offered by most websites and dating sites. OkCupid does NOT have a customer service phone line. This means that, whether you like it or not, feedback and concerns (even about your account or billing) will have to be submitted through online forms and a reply waited for. While it can be frustrating not to be able to connect with a real, live person on the phone, replies come relatively quickly: https://www.okcupid.com/help/contact-us
Go to OkCupid.com and/or download the app. On the opening OkCupid web page you will login and/or sign up. While you have the option of linking with your Facebook account, you can also sign up with a regular email address. In an effort to distinguish themselves and craft a company vision distinctive from Tinder’s ‘hot or not’ style swipes, OKC’s main page says,
“On OkCupid, you’re more than just a photo. You have stories to tell, and passion to share, and things to talk about that are more interesting than the weather. Get noticed for who you are, not what you look like. Because you deserve what dating deserves: better.”
Once you’re properly signed up and logged in, you’ll have a chance to upload a photograph (from your computer, Facebook, or by connecting to Instagram) and fill in some basic information. Include your name and select your gender. Male or female have been the most used, but with OKC as one of the most advanced and progressive gender inclusive sites, you will be shown 22 different options for gender. These range from Cis Man, Non-binary, or Two Spirit, etc. You’ll also select what you’re looking for, detailed below.
Remember how we said OkCupid has changed? While hookups and short term flings have always been a part of the site and all such sites, When new users go to what they’re looking for, to make a selection between ‘hookup, new friends, short-term dating, long term dating, and whether or not they’re open to non-monogamy’… only one selection is pre-highlighted: Hookup.
So, from the start of sign up, the implication that the site is moving away from a traditional LTR or dating mindset to a progressive hookup site seems clear.
Next, choose the age range you’re looking for and write about yourself. Even if it is tempting to click past these initial details, with little thought, make sure you enter them for the best results and experience on the site. The following profile details will be more thorough, as you answer 15 questions about your belief systems and what beliefs you’d like in a compatible partner. For instance, whether you want your next relationship to last one night, a few months to a year, several years, or the rest of your life … to questions about smoking preference or personality.
When using dating sites, it is important to educate yourself about Catfish, Scammers, and Spammers online. If you find that someone is not whom they claimed to be, take action and stop contact with/or block them. Limit exchanging personal information, such as your full name or address, until you know someone well. Always meet in a public location. If funds have been swindled from you in any way, report it to the authorities.
The main complaints online about OkCupid generally involve users encountering catfish/scammers, the site’s lack of phone support (and not getting feedback when needed) and accounts being inaccurately deleted. Feedback on the site’s new messaging rules (detailed below) is mixed.
OkCupid’s desktop site is what one has come to expect from online dating. If you’re a millennial or simply prefer the fast speed of swiping sites like Tinder or Bumble, you will want to take advantage of OKC’s more vibrant and modernized app.