OK, OKCupid, treating people like lab rats: NOT OK!

OKCupid

OkCupid: Blinded by "science."

Christian Rudder, cofounder of dating site OKCupid, believes experimenting on users and outright lies about dating compatibility are hunky dory -- because OKCupid is a web site! All the fuss about Facebook's mood experiments is overblown, and he has the data to prove it!

Because hey, it's not like people use OKCupid's compatibility algorithm to help make extremely personal decisions that could effect the rest of their lives or anything. It's just an online dating site. OK?

In IT Blogwatch, bloggers meet people in the real world.

Filling in for our humble blogwatcher Richi Jennings, is a humbler Stephen Glasskeys.

 

Zach Miners behaves badly:

Facebook...sparked criticism over a study in which it manipulated the feeds of some of its users, but the dating site OkCupid says what Facebook did is normal, and that in fact it has run its own user-behavior tests.  MORE

 

Iain Thomson meddles with our minds:

The recent brouhaha over Facebook meddling with its users' minds is overblown, according to Christian Rudder - the cofounder of dating site OKCupid.

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Over the past ten years, OKCupid has been throwing designs and algorithms against the wall to see if any of them stick, he said, giving details on three experiments to see what its users actually want and use.  MORE

 

But Brian Fung has self-respect:

Christian Rudder explains that OkCupid has on occasion played around with removing text [and] photos, and...telling some users they were an excellent match when in fact they were only a 30 percent match. Just to see what would happen.

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OkCupid defends this behavior as something that any self-respecting Web site would do.  MORE

 

Straight from the horse's #@& mouth:

I'm the first to admit it: we might be popular, we might create a lot of great relationships, we might blah blah blah. But OkCupid doesn’t really know what it's doing.

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[Guess] what, everybody: if you use the Internet, you're the subject of hundreds of experiments at any given time, on every site. That's how websites work.

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When we tell people they are a good match, they act as if they are. Even when they should be wrong for each other.  MORE

 

Karissa Bell is a huge Pavlov fan:

The post went on to detail three such experiments the site conducted with users.

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Two of the experiments revolved around user photos, which play a big role, of course, in how users on a dating site interact with one another.

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The final experiment examined the power of suggestion in the site's matchmaking process. The site changed the results of its match algorithm to tell users who were actually judged to be incompatible that they were, in fact, highly compatible.  MORE

 

Jay Hathaway can't justify some behavior:

In the latest post on OkCupid's data-driven chronicle of man's inhumanity to man, the OkTrends Blog, we learn that your picture is all that matters and you'll like whomever a fair-to-middling cupid tells you to like.

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How is this any better than Facebook using our news feeds to see if it can make us miserable? OkCupid doesn't have a very thorough justification.  MORE

 

Meanwhile, Sam Biddle watches Deliverance:

The worst dates of my life were w/ people I was in the 90 percent okcupid match zone with, it was like getting a drink with a cousin.  MORE

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