Don’t Fall For OKCupid’s Latest Scam


Name: AC
Question: Yesterday when I logged into my Okcupid account, there was a notice from the site administrators stating they have removed the “Who’s Viewed Me” section from the site.  While I don’t remember the exact wording, their reasoning was along the lines of “now only the users who really want to contact you will do so.”

In the past, there was an ongoing debate about how much this Visitors List should be relied upon when sending out emails vs. cold call emails.

Obviously this decision from OKC is a game changer. For all intents and purposes, cold call emails are now the only option (IMO: sitting around waiting for likes is not an option).

I’m curious if you were aware of this change. If so, what are your thoughts? Also, what do the ATWYS readers think?
Age: 45


I received those emails as well. After reviewing the items included in OKCupid’s A-List membership, I think I know what’s behind this change. It appears the powers that be over at OKCupid are trying to force people into subscribing to A-list. Up until they made this change, free subscribers could see who viewed their profile. Users didn’t have to upgrade to a paid membership to see their visitors list. Because so many people were free users,users didn’t utilize the like function because it was a crapshoot; there was no way to know if someone was a paid user and could therefore see they’d been liked. By removing the Visitors function, people now have to pay to see who liked them. Do you see where this is going?

Money, honey. That’s what this is about.

OKCupid can bite me with their claims of doing super-special data research and how this change is “better for everyone.” It’s not. It’s better for their pockets. A few  months ago they removed the “new” search filter, preventing users from viewing profiles from new users.  Again, this decision was allegedly made to “help” (mostly female) users and to cut back on harassment. Bullshit. Now we’re stuck slogging through the same god damn profiles every day trying to figure out who hasn’t been lingering on that site for multiple years. I don’t know about anyone else, but that switch hasn’t made an iota of difference for me. I still get a dozen or so unwanted messages each week. If anything, it’s exacerbated the unwanted messages issue, because people can’t tell if I’m new or not. The folks shooting off cut and paste messages aren’t even paying attention anymore. They’re going around and around, chasing their tail, hitting up the same people over and over.

See, OKCupid’s brand was built on the fact that it was a free service. It would be a huge mistake for them to change their business model and force people to pay a membership fee to use the site. Instead of making themselves the bad guys in this scenario, they’re putting the onus to pay on the user by taking away the free features. Even Incognito – which I believe was once included in the A-list subscription –  is now an additional paid service. From their package description page:

Please note that Incognito is a separate subscription from A-list, and does not include A-list features (like invisible browsing, which hides you on visitors lists).

Essentially, they’re trying to force people’s hands. If they did any research, it was on what compels a free user to pay the membership fee.

I have said this numerous times: the visitors list was the goldmine, not your likes. Since a lot of the people didn’t pay for the service, they viewed someone’s profile to get attention instead. Not to mention, plenty of people view a profile, find the user interesting, but don’t message them assuming that user wouldn’t be into them. The idea that if someone viewed you but didn’t message because they weren’t interested is patently false. In fact, it’s often the other way around. They were interested, but second guessed themselves. The only responses to messages that I get are when I email guys who have viewed my profile. I have a 0% response rate when I send cold call (aka unsolicited) messages. I’m not exaggerating. Literally NO ONE I message replies to me other than the guys who viewed my profile first.

Removing the visitors list is actually quite detrimental to users, as it’s unlikely many people will pay for a service they can get for free on Tinder or Bumble. I can’t be the only one who has noticed the lack of fresh faces on OKCupid. My guess is their membership is down so they are  working to convert them members they already have to make up for the lack of new sign-ups.

But here’s the rub: boycotting OKCupid will only hurt you. Like I always say: go where the people are. The people behind these sites aren’t stupid; they know that online dating has become exponentially more difficult since the explosion of social media and apps. They’re doing what most businesses do and exploiting that to their advantage. OKCupid wants people to receive an onslaught of creepy messages. They want members to assault users with their cut and paste jobs.  They don’t want to make it easy for users. Just the opposite; they are trying to make things more difficult to get the user’s money.

I’ll close by repeating something else I’ve said ad nauseum: cold call messages are POINTLESS. They were useless before Tinder and they are that much more irrelevant now. If you’re blowing off 99.9% of the messages you receive, then it stands to reason others are, too. On traditional dating sites. focus on the people who initiate interest. Use Tinder and the rest of the apps to indiscriminately throw spaghetti at the wall. That’s what those apps are for: showing reckless abandon. On Match or OKCupid, concentrate your efforts on the people that make themselves known to you in some way.  That’s where the success lies. Oh, you know someone who met their partner by sending them a message. Cool cool cool. Tell me something: how many messages did they send and how many dates did they go on before that happened. To quote an age-old saying, “Even a broken clock is right twice a day.”

/end rant




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4 Responses to “Don’t Fall For OKCupid’s Latest Scam”

  1. Dark Sarcasm Says:

    This might effectively put the nail in the coffin of OK Cupid anyway, since most women on their profiles openly state, “a) I’m not logged in all the time b) I don’t see ‘likes’, c) I don’t participate in ‘likes’, so send me an email and just say Hi, and d) I don’t get a chance to reply to the emails I do get.’

    So OK Cupid wants them to pay to see who visited their profile?

    HA! Good luck with that


  2. AC Says:

    I am in complete agreement that his is another money-making scam from Okcupid. Like Dark Sarcasm, suggests, I hope they fall flat on their faces as well. As for this:

    “I have a 0% response rate when I send cold call (aka unsolicited) messages. I’m not exaggerating. Literally NO ONE I message replies to me other than the guys who viewed my profile first.”

    This is your experience. It’s certainly not my experience.

    Up until three years ago, I would agree that the viewed list was reliable. After the Tinder/Bubble explosion, not so much. 20/20 hindsight, I would have been an interesting experiment to sit down and crunch the numbers.Send 50 cold calls, respond to every view that I was interested in, sees how many responses from each. It looks like that ship has sailed.

  3. Annabelle Says:

    Yep. The visitor list was quite helpful in determining who was actually interested. And I’m with Moxie on cold-calling: Sent a message on POF today to a perfectly average-looking, blue-collar guy – following the advice to not shoot above my league – only to see he immediately read and deleted it. Yes, online dating is a humbling experience, and any help we can get – A VISITOR LIST, for example – goes a long way.

  4. Pwdrpuff Says:

    I’m not sure how they are scamming non-members, because I am one, and I can’t see visitors either. Did you see the new A list offers or did you just assume that’s what they would do? The visitor tab disappeared for me a couple of days ago as well. I think the opposite is true of it being a scam, in that it’s helpful for non paying members to visit profiles invisibly. Randos used to contact me if I visited their profile, then get mad that I wouldn’t be interested in engaging. It goes both ways

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