Artificial intelligence is quickly changing the landscape of many businesses — but can the technology really help someone find true love?
Several entrepreneurial matchmakers are betting it can, enlisting AI to help tongue-tied romantics break the ice with witty pickup lines, virtual dating coaches and even erotic pillow talk.
One Snapchat influencer, Caryn Marjorie, recently created an AI clone of herself using ChatGPT that engages prospective “boyfriends” in conversations ranging from basic chit-chat to more advanced discussions about “exploring each other’s bodies all night long” – for a $1 per minute fee.
On a more broader level, an upstart dating site has created a virtual dating coach named “Lora” who helps Romeos avoid the possible pitfalls in wooing their Juliets.
“Lora will write, ‘I know that you like parties and noise. But for the first date, I suggest to take her to a quiet place, go to walk in the park, go take her to a restaurant or coffee shop or something like that, because she wants you to get to know her better,’” said Lior Baruch, the CEO of A-Love.
A would-be rival, Teaser AI, hit Apple’s App Store last month with a chatbot that handles the initial “talking phase” of online dates — though the app warns users upfront that it “might say some crazy sh-t.”
Another app, YourMove AI, generates pick-up lines and other “witty” banter — like responding to someone who said they “totally loved” a particular movie by saying, “actually, I thought you were the star of the show.”
The concept of an AI-centric experience is already generating some healthy skepticism among dating experts — with some arguing that virtual “coaches” or pickup artists will ultimately make it even harder for people to find authentic connections.
“It’s an aid, not a replacement,” said one prominent online dating influencer and content creator, who requested anonymity to freely discuss the industry’s embrace of AI features.
“I think the danger in using AI as a coach to tell you how to behave is you remove the human element of who you are, which is invaluable. That’s what makes somebody interesting.” the influencer added. “What happens after you start dating after a few months and you can’t sustain that level of conversation because it wasn’t natural?”
Despite some red flags, there are signs that many singles – especially younger ones – are clamoring for automated dating features.
A whopping 53% of Americans aged 18-29 say they have used a dating site or app, according to a February poll by Pew Research Center, with Tinder, Bumble and Hinge being the most popular options.
Mentions of ChatGPT have increased by 14 times since Jan. 1, according to a “future of dating” report released in May by popular dating app Tinder. The same report found that 34% of 18- to 25-year-olds on Tinder said they would use AI dating tools if they were available.
Baruch, an Israel-based tech entrepreneur, aims to release an app called Mee+ in the US this fall that features his “AI matchmaker” – an automated model trained on data from about 1,500 studies that explored the nature of romantic relationships.
To create the algorithm that powers Mee+, the team used the research studies to compile a set of 20 “predictors” that best determine whether two individuals can work as a couple. Lora uses the predictors, as well as each user’s responses to a series of questions, to build a sort of psych profile that will dictate the sort of matches and dating advice the AI doles out.
In a closed beta test of the technology conducted in Israel, more than half of the 25,000 participants went on dates — and nearly 200 have already gotten engaged or married, according to Baruch, who said the algorithm will only improve as it gathers more information about what works and what doesn’t.
Established dating sites like Bumble, Tinder and Hinge have used AI in some aspects for years, but are taking a more guarded approach than their freewheeling peers in the startup world.
A Tinder spokesperson declined to comment specifically on future tools that might appear in the app, but said the company is exploring ways to incorporate AI as a sort of “virtual dating coach” that would help users build their profiles.
“We don’t want people to begin using AI in a way that feels like they’re just generic, bot-like profiles,” the spokesperson said. “We want to help people uncover the right things to say about themselves and therefore match with the right people and ultimately get out on dates in real life.”
Tinder offers AI features such as its “does this bother you?” tool, which automatically flags potentially offensive messages. AI improvements will help the tool to better understand context rather than simply tracking banned keywords.
Bumble has placed a heavy emphasis on AI-powered safety features, such as photo verification and a “private detector,” released in 2019, that automatically detects and blurs nude images.
More recent tools include “best photo,” which helps Bumble users select the right profile picture to find more matches, and “best bees,” which purportedly uses an improved algorithm to provide a more curated group of compatible matches.
“We see more opportunities to integrate AI further into our user journey, as this is just the tip of the iceberg in using AI to improve our curation and the quality of the connections we make,” Bumble spokesperson Zanna Crowley told The Post.
Both companies say they are focused on ensuring that any tools prioritize user safety and lead to real-world connections – rather than a sterile online conversation between two AI bots.
“For years, we have been leveraging AI in our apps, across safety, content moderation, our recommendations engine, and our personalization and monetization efforts,” Crowley said.
“These results have driven real impact across the user experience as we continue to encourage our members to foster genuine connections that they can build in real life,” she added.
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