Is This New Concierge Online Dating Service The Future Of Rich People Getting Lucky?
Update: The service seems to no longer exists. If you’re interested in getting some coaching, check out: I Asked A Dating Coach To Make Me An Irresistible Profile – Here’s What Happened.
In the future, you will never have to be uncomfortable. You will never have to feel awkward or self-conscious or plain old dorky.
Everything that sucks will be outsourced. You know how you hate mopping, so you hired a cleaning service? Kinda like that, but for everything. Even the most personal aspects of your life, the things that truly make you you, will become services you gladly pay for.
That’s the thinking behind ODately, at least.
Based in England, this company hopes to take the unpleasantness out of online dating, mostly by removing you from the process entirely. The company offers two services: with the barebones package, they just make your online dating profiles for you. If you’re truly a man about town who can’t be bothered to do things like ask people out on dates or even answer emails, don’t worry — that’s something they can do, too, as they compose IMs for you and set up romantic nights out with your prospective e-suitors.
“To begin doing either of those services, we arrange a 45-minute phone call with our client,” explained ODately founder Jack Kenyon in an email. “During the call we talk through their personal background, clarify who they want to meet and the relationships they are looking for. With that information we can then create their profiles and begin doing their online dating.”
Rates range from £250 to £500 per month ($350 to $700 USD) and there is a guaranteed refund if you’re not happy with any aspect of the service. The company also doesn’t entirely have sovereignty over your dating life; they clear any potential matches with you before sending that all-important first message (which, ideally, makes you look more sophisticated than a crass “Hey, DTF?”). There’s even a free introductory phone call, if you have reservations.
I’ve been watching a lot of Republican debates lately, so maybe this is just my inner Ted Cruz, but when it comes to ideas, you can’t really argue with the free market. If this is something guys want to pay for, then I salute both them and Kenyon. More power to all of you.
But I don’t get it.
In my 20s, I tried my hand at online dating several times. While there might once have been a stigma, I’m guessing there are kids out there whose magical love stories begin with “It was love at first swipe.” Online dating is no longer seen as the dominion of the lonely and isolated, nor is it just for those who are too busy to join social clubs. It’s for everybody — rich, poor, introverted and extroverted alike.
That being said, a service like ODately just seems so… excessive.
I remember scouring for potential love interests on OkCupid, Plenty of Fish, Tinder and other dating sites… I even had an unfortunate stint on JDate (the chosen people might want to rebrand themselves as the choosy people, for all the luck I had). And yes, I hated trying to come up with opening messages that were more interesting than “Sup?” but less creepy than “It puts the lotion on its skin or it gets the hose again.”
It sucked, but it almost sucked in the way approaching a woman at any bar/bookstore/monster truck rally sucks. You’ve got those butterflies in your stomach. Do we really share a love of big cars smashing littler cars? Does she think I’m good looking? God, I hope she thinks I’m good looking and loves heavy machinery.
There is something to be said for that initial, nervous rush, even if you’re just dicking around on your phone.
“You should try ODately if you want to spend your time on dates, not online,” says Kenyon, but man — isn’t setting those dates up supposed to be part of it? Sure, bombing is the worst, but it’s your worst.
I suppose having that ego cushion could be nice. After all, if that nice brunette who says she loves to laugh doesn’t answer, you can always blame it on ODately’s love concierge. But maybe we all need that dose of humility rejection brings. Sucking at something, especially dating, gives you grit. It builds character.
RELATED READING: Is Online Dating Crushing The Romance Out Of Dating?
Nobody likes to be uncomfortable or look like a dork. But sometimes that’s just what we need.
After all, if you somehow manage to convince loves-to-laugh girl to come on a date with you, you get to take the credit.