Zoosk is Killin it, but is friending & Dating a killer Idea?

zoosk friends with benefits

Zoosk at first was a Facebook app,but now its a full fledged site of its own at it is killing it; but I have to admit, Zoosk confuses me.  Zoosk is all about web 2.0, mixing your social network with your “other” social dating network that you probobly don’t talk about. Basically Zoosk allows your Facebook friends to be active participants in your love life, from the highs of meeting someone new, to the crushing blow of being dumbed. All with your Facebook friends their each step of the way. What a fantastic idea…

I like the idea of social dating, (me and my friends go out with you and your friends) but  Facebook friends having a say in my dating life is a god awful idea. Regardless of privacy concerns, and measuring the cost of not sharing; friends know things. Personal things, about you. Things you may not want a new  boyfriends or girlfriends to know, since all new relationships invole a little bit of white lying at first.

zoosk dating

I have always kept separate at first my dating life and my social life.Though the two have a lot in common, they can be as different as  gasoline and fire, and when combining the two too quickly, fireworks can happen and someone is bound to get burned, and that person is usually me. So why complicate things early on? Develop that level of comfort and exclusivity with your date, then introduce them to your crazy friends or roommates. Preferably  I at a noisy, crowed spot, like a bar, so half the time your saying “what?”. This helps avoid trips down memory lane…

Hey remember that time you were mistakenly arrested? Wasent that funny lol

When your girlfriend or boyfriend finally does get to meet your group, your friends should always operate under the principle of  surface level, agree with everything I say, hi how are you,type conversation. After a month or so, then a little more honesty can find its way in. This way, the embarrassing stories are held off on both sides. Should my friends tell the time I fell down a sewer, I could always throw back next time “hey remember how you bought your mother an old bag of cheese for her birthday” really thoughtful pal.

This is why Zoosk confuses me, even though its killing it in the dating site game. My generation likes its. Twitter I thought was a stupid concept at first, but I use it and love it now (1800+ followers at this point, thanks for your support), this can probobly explain part of Zoosks success from going from 16.5 million users in to more than 30 million users to date. Mixing with Facebook, as it is the biggest dating app period, this give users a chance to try it out the site. Though I suspect many of the users are “dead” profiles with no activity, It is also amazingly available in 12 languages for international appeal. Very Cool!

love Zoosk is Killin it, but is friending & Dating a killer Idea?

 

So Zoosk is a lot like its older more professional web 1.0 counterparts like good old Match.com or YahooPersonals.com. You sign up, your able to link your Myspace and Facebook profiles to your Zoosk profile. You make the standard page, with pic and a little bit about what your like and what your looking for. Add in some music and movie preferences and your done! Other users crushing on you can send you winks ( winks? So silly why not just make it “hey babe come here often“) and straight to your inbox, virtual flowers, just to show that your not like other guys, I took the time to click.

Now the part that is unique, friend testimonials. So great, dating sites are already something most users kind of want to keep a secret that their using, but Zoosk has you announce to all your friends that your 1) Dating online and 2)You need a recommendation from them. This is why Super Awesome Dating exists, to give lite to finding love online, add a little humor, and empower you. Zoosk is cool, but this friend testimonial part confuses me. What exactly will my friends say?

The Good (boring generic compliments)

  • Hes great, smart and ambitious. I just can’t believe he’s single.
  • What a catch. David simply rocks.
  • I’ve know him a long time and he is trustworthy and reliable. Knows how to treat a girl. (Yawn)

The Bad (Funny things your friends could potentially make up  to make fun of your for dating online)

  • He loves Bon Jovi! ( I don’t actually)
  • He wears tighty whities (No I don’t!)
  • He has never had a girlfriend, please do us all a favor and go out with him. (I’m going to kill you)

The Ugly (Potentially crazy or mean things your friends could say)

  • If you hurt him, I will hunt you down and hurt you, be afraid, be very afraid.
  • If you whear Ugg Boots or Crocs, you need not apply
  • Looking for no strings attached hookup? You found your man

 

dating testimonials

 

So what of these testimonials? Do they help? Does not having any testimonials mean your an unlovable loser who has no friends and no one likes?If someone asked me for a recommendation I would demand to see their profile so I know where my words will be showing up. I would expect the same. The result: endless prying and poking about on my dating site profile. “Reminding” me that I am not exactly 5 ft 11 and “that picture doesn’t look like you, it makes you look Italian”.

Your Friends Like you for you. Some stranger off a dating site, like you for what they think you are.

 Between these two facts, lies an ocean of funny stories, crazy times, and embarrassing failures.

 Now I may not seem to show much web 2.0 compassion, that I don’t see how Zoosk is bringing in a whole new level of honesty in the search to find love and be happy (awesome). Don’t get me wrong, with shows like NBC’s to catch a predator, I do think the Internet can use more honesty and a little less anonymity.For my readers outside of the states here is a sample of what I am talking about, quite creepy:

 

 

So maybe Zoosk, with mixing of friends and dating is not such a bad idea. Why not let a match who wants to get to know you, also hear what your friends have to say about your profile and person?  Plus Zoosk  has some good built in privacy controls. Matches can’t see your entire profile unless you let them. This allows you to manage your testimonials, and nuke those that you find bad or ugly, though you wrote on your profile how you hate games and want honesty and openness :)

Creative Commons License photo credit: magerleagues
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