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Would online dating be easier if you could be judged by your inspiring photos rather than a paragraph of forced words and awkwardly cropped images? Melissa Jones, the creator of new dating website Dreamcliq, seems to think so.
Launched earlier this month, Dreamcliq is basically the Pinterest of dating. The platform offers up a grid of images, where users can pull any sort of photos to their profiles, from art to travel spots to social media photos with friends. Potential partners then browse and determine matches based off their image-heavy profiles. Jones sees Dreamcliq as a way for users to "express themselves differently."
"It's a totally different dating experience when you have a profile that is based off the images you love, not just images of yourself," Jones told Racked. "Maybe you'll post photos of something you collect, or of other things you want to incorporate in your profile. It's ever-evolving and those images coexist with you. It's easier to get to know someone by looking at someone's Pinterest board and Facebook page than by reading some words and being judged off your headshot."
Dreamcliq users can browse profiles for free, but the site uses a "pay-per-cliq" model meaning you must pay $2.50 to "cliq," or message someone. Jones said the pay model will keep spammers out of the site—users have seven days to respond to the message, and if they don't hear anything, they are credited half the amount back. Jones also believes interactions will be more meaningful on the site, since users know someone paid to message them.
"Statistically speaking, men can send up to 300 messages to women without getting an answer, so women end up with tons of messages in their online dating inboxes. We think if the messaging costs money, you'll think a little bit more about what you send," she said. "Plus with so many spammers on dating sites, people don't even know how to reply to all the hundreds of messages they get, so they don't end up responding and it ends up being a bummer on both sides."
A browse through Dreamcliq images.
While popular dating sites like Match.com and OKCupid thrive off a standard profile model (with people even paying ghostwriters to make them sound as good as possible, as New York Magazine reported last year), DreamCliq follows a wave of new dating ventures thinking outside the box. The tried-and-true method of clicking through photos and text is now up against more novel concepts like date-pitching site How About We, interest-matching site Tastebuds, or the app Tinder which makes matches based on nearby users. Jones, meanwhile, thinks that the tactic of sifting through a montage of photos is an easier way to approach something overwhelming like dating.
Jones comes with a background in imaging, working in visual communications for brands like like J.Crew, Alexander McQueen, and Fendi before starting her own creative consultancy and design studio, DTE Studio. She believes Dreamcliq will help people become more engaged in online dating and will provide more meaningful connections.
Right now, Dreamcliq's user database is 60 percent women, 40 percent men, which isn't surprising, given that the Pinterest model is all together pretty girly: a "no bro zone," where at 70%, women heavily outweigh male users.
Jones, however, said having too many women is never a problem because, "once the women are there, the men will come."
· Dreamcliq [Official Site]
· Wanelo Wants to Crush the Category of Social Shopping [Racked]