OkCupid Says Human Experiments Are How Websites Work

Founder Christian Rudder details three experiments OkCupid had conducted on its users.

  • In brief
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    Source: Above Top Secret

  • Mashable has the story...

    The following is an excerpt from OkCupid Defends Human Experiments: 'That's How Websites Work'

    For one test in January 2013, "Love is Blind Day," the site temporarily removed all users' photos to see how it would affect their interactions. Unsurprisingly, the site's traffic went down significantly, but those who did use the site in that time reportedly responded to first messages more often and exchanged contact information more quickly.

    Until photos were restored, that is, at which point conversations that had started "blindly" "melted away."

  • The Huffington Post has more...

    The following is an excerpt from OkCupid Proudly Admits It Experiments On People All The Time

    Another experiment tested OkCupid's famous matching algorithm, which is supposed tell you, on a scale of 0 to 100, how good a match you are with someone else. The site told some pairs who were bad matches that they were, in fact, great for each other, and it told other pairs who had scored high on compatibility that they weren't a good fit. OkCupid found that the power of suggestion made people who were incompatible -- according to the algorithm, at least -- hold an online conversation longer than expected.

    The argument that Rudder is making on behalf of the rest of the tech industry is that websites need to do this sort of testing to build stuff we like. "Most ideas are bad," he wrote. "Even good ideas could be better. Experiments are how you sort all this out."

  • Many had different views regarding the experiments conducted on OkCupid:

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