The dating website Seeking.com recently announced that it will invest $30 million to collaborate with the safety app UrSafe in order to introduce a range of safety features for its users. This move comes in the face of increasing concerns about safety in the world of online dating, particularly from women. While many apps have taken steps to incorporate additional features, the million dollar matchmaker website is set to introduce enhanced voice activate features like fake calls.
What is Seeking.com?
When you think about dating websites, Seeking.com likely is not one of the brand names that pop in your mind. This is a niche dating website that bills itself as a million-dollar matchmaker website. Specifically, Seeking.com designates itself as a site where attractive and successful people can upgrade their lifestyles through open communication.
The site was initially launched in 2006 under the name Seeking Arrangement before later rebranding as Seeking.com. It is a site that caters to people interested in sugar daddy and sugar baby style relationships. It currently supports over 20 million members.
Seeking.com advertises a ratio of “attractive members to successful members” that is 4:1. It pitches the ability for people to date elite individuals and live the type of live that they desire. A big focus of the site is for people to be upfront about what they are specifically looking for as an outcome of a relationship.
The Trend of Dating Sites Upgrading Safety Features
Dating safety has always been an important consideration even in the days before online dating and the World Wide Web. However, it has become increasingly important in recent years as stories about people experiencing scary situations have become more prevalent, leading many apps to create built-in features or API integrations to help enhance user safety.
Within the United States, 81% of women and 43% of men experience some type of sexual harassment in their lifetimes. Additionally, one out of four women has experienced sexual assault with women aged 18 to 34 being at the highest risk for sexual violence.
The statistics reveal the importance of integrating safety features into dating apps and websites. Enhancing safety features can help proactively assist members who are on dates should they encounter emergency circumstances. UrSafe bills itself as a one-of-a-kind app providing comprehensive safety features. While the app has features for various situations such as extreme weather, school emergencies, and rideshare, one of its leading uses is for online dating.
UrSafe App Seeks to Revolutionize Dating Safety
Seeking.com will partner with UrSafe to utilize API integrations that allow members to utilize safety features without even picking up their phone. They will simply be able to use a safe word in order to activate various features while on a date.
Members of Seeking.com will be able to utilize UrSafe to designate emergency contacts. These contacts will be able to monitor them when desired such as going on a date with another member. The app allows real time location sharing, meaning that friends or family designated as emergency contacts will be able to see their live location on a map.
Additionally, the safe word feature allows a user to say their safe word, which would command the UrSafe app to immediately notify emergency contacts and local law enforcement. This is a powerful tool that should provide additional peace of mind to members who are seeking to find lover on Seeking.com.
However, these are not the only benefits of the partnership between the UrSafe app and Seeking.com. Members can also utilize safety features such as fake calls. Setting up fake calls during a date can allow a member to have an excuse to answer their phone and politely leave a situation, faking an emergency. If a date is exhibiting concerning behavior, fake calls are a good way to excuse yourself from an emergency circumstance.
A Challenge for the Online Dating Industry
With Seeking.com investing $30 million to enhance the safety features provided to its members through partnership with the UrSafe app, this potentially brings a challenge to the rest of the online dating industry to do the same. The features provided by UrSafe are perhaps the most comprehensive of any app out there, meaning that Seeking.com potentially leads the way in user safety with this collaboration.
While many other dating apps have introduced home grown features, the comprehensive nature of those offered by the UrSafe app may ultimately serve as a challenge for other dating apps and websites to follow the example set by Seeking.com.
Introducing things like fake calls, live tracking, and voice activated emergency services dispatching would provide excellent tools for member wanting to avoid emergency circumstances. Time will tell whether this move by Seeking.com will generate ripple effects across the online dating landscape leading to more comprehensive safety features in other apps as well.