Online dating compete for Valentine’s Day dollar

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Humor and Love7732 S. Cottage Grove #196 Chicago, Il [email protected]: David Rosenthal (323) 465-1210 day/eveFor Immediate Release


Online dating historically was seen as the refuge of the desperate. It also got a bad rap because of its association with seedy chat rooms and predators. But modern online dating is gaining popularity and with 75 million singles in America, the market for romance-related Websites is huge. People are committed to finding someone and willing to pay for it. The days of the completely free dating sites are also gone, and having paid membership has helped in the screening process. And the money’s not bad for the dating services either; according to’s website. ( They claim more than 653,000 paying subscribers with more than 8 million members having posted their profiles. And online dating had a growth of 37%, to $313 million, in 2002, according to Jupiter Research.

But this past January’s television commercial by essentially signaled the online dating taboo had been lifted. The ad was made by Gooby, Silverstein and Partners, and features a comical marriage taking place. By launching their ad in January it’s clear they’re hoping to cash in on the Valentine’s Day rush of lonely hearts this month. But if you’ve been paying attention you may have notices other signals that it’s OK to date via computer. Last summer Yahoo Personals launched a TV commercial where they featured a blind date couple meeting in a bar with jumbo-sized right hands. And not long ago the Oxygen Network premiered E-Love, where couples who met online finally meet in person.

“It IS a tough market to break into,” says newcomer to the field, David Rosenthal, who not long ago started Says Rosenthal, “the only real way to get into the space now is niche marketing-having an angle.” And his angle is to have date seekers participate in something called Humor Matching. The idea is to have people include the things that make them laugh as part of their profile and when other seekers search they use those findings to make a connection. Rosenthal believes that people who find the same things funny are probably compatible.

“Most of the big dating sites are a little like buying shoes in a department store; they have a huge selection and you MIGHT find something you like, but you might not. They’ve got these huge databases of people, but there isn’t any sort of matching element. So you’re sitting there reading all these profiles and it’s really hit or miss. My site is based on the premise that I know people find a sense of humor vital, so I make it the matching element. It’s a little like looking for hip shoes-so you go to a shoe store on Melrose. You already know you’re going to find what you’re looking for. And at you already know humor is something the other members value.”# # #