Getting Meta: blog about another blog

I loathe the abused concept of “big data” but this research blog from OkCupid is adorable. Christian Rudder, co-founder of OkCupid is the main person contributing to the blog.

Based on (stalking) his Reddit comments, it looks like the blog has been rather inactive for the last year or so because he has been spending time writing a book called “Dataclysm” based loosely on the blog findings. Here is Rudder contributing to a TED talk blog named 7 things we learned from online dating. Below is a video of Christian Rudder on TedEd to talk about their matching algorithm (in illustrations as all math nerds will).

As an OkCupid user who remains skeptical about their matching algorithm albeit them claiming 500 users leave the site DAILY because they met someone on OKC. I’m more interested in what the aggregated self-reported answers to survey questions from the site can contribute to much deeper analysis. Again, getting meta!

Just like Google and Facebook, OkCupid actively collects millions of users’ data and feed them back into improving the tool. OkTrend opens up just a tip of that iceberg of data in pretty presentations, which serves as a gate to lure potential users to create an account as well as boasting the brand image that “OkCupid uses math to get you dates. It’s extremely accurate, as long as (a) you’re honest, and (b) you know what you want. ” (Emphasis added)

The blog strikes the balance between beautiful presentation and scientific accuracy. Although he only posts every month or less, the blog has about one million monthly visitors since the content is not extremely timely. Users and non-users frequently come back for references and numbers that they saw before. The main call to action is to follow them across different social platforms, share the insights as well as checking out the dating site OkCupid.

OkTrend

It is safe to assume that OkCupid users resemble the online dating industry at large, and thus the insights from OkTrend could serve as insight to the industry as a whole, if not a little biased towards free dating service and a younger demographic.

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