Swiping left or right has become a way of life for most singles. Almost every single person has tried their hand at dating via a dating app that was recently launched. Or they’re loyal and still use Tinder or use Hinge, which is being called the ‘classier’ avatar of Tinder. But even then, you’re not having any luck finding the ‘one,’ because you’re being spammed left, right, and center with unwanted and unwarranted lewd messages once you swipe right. Or worse, someone you swiped right thinks it’s their right to harass you overtly or subtly just because you both ‘like’ each other.
To shield you from all these above mentioned problems on various dating apps and dating sites, a New York City-based startup, Mesh Labs Inc., has come up with a product, Mesh dating app, whose goal is to “make online dating enjoyable and trustworthy again!” Although this statement begs the question of whether online dating could ever be associated with these two words – enjoyable and trustworthy – the Brooklyn-based startup sure does think so.
Mesh allows a user to prevent ‘creepy and sleazy messages, stalkers, overly aggressive types, etc.,’ from their experience on the site. How does it achieve this? With these features:
1. Mismatch – this feature filters messages deemed vulgar, with poor grammar/bad spelling, lol text speak, curse words, and copy-and-pasted messages
2. Dealbreakers – this is a feature where a user sets up ‘dealbreaker’ questions that another user needs to answer correctly to be able to initiate contact. And if the other user gets them wrong, they’re siphoned off into the Mismatch folder
3. Privacy settings – Mesh’s privacy settings are very specific
Speaking about his motivation behind the development of the service, Asher Snyder, CEO, Mesh Labs Inc. said,
“The current crop of free online dating sites are broken. Harassment and undesirable vulgarity runs unchecked while quality messages get lost in the shuffle, leaving many women with a negative experience.”
Mesh dating app filters users based on demographics and attributes such as religion, ethnicity, even height. While this might seem shallow, it also helps users to filter out those who they’re not attracted to and not waste time being polite and exchanging pleasantries with.
While other dating services matches up users mostly based on people’s looks and a few short words in their bios, Mesh’s algorithm goes one step further and learns what users like and dislike. Then, it uses this information to fetch the right match for a user. And thanks to its specific privacy settings, if a user stipulates and specifies that he/she wants to date someone belonging to a particular ethnicity, then that information is only known to Mesh. Nowhere is it revealed on the person’s profile. This bit of specification is also added into the algorithm to bring in better suited matches.
The most important thing for Mesh is to build a user interface that is women-centric in that it helps avoid women getting spammed and feeling harassed.
“Mesh is built to protect women from the ground up and provide more natural dating experiences,” Snyder said. “It’s so you can filter out the creeps. We’re all about being able to protect you.”
The features that Snyder has come up with, relies on proprietary technology that can be found only on Mesh. To avoid seeing the same features on rival or newer apps, Snyder has filed a patent for them.
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Mesh not only filters out the text on a user’s messages, but it also scans images and weeds out those that don’t quite match with the requirements set by a user. Snyder also said that Mesh has the ability to gauge the user’s interest and filter their searches by hair, eye color, and even dimples.
“We’re trying to change the dating game,” said Snyder. “This app gives people control to choose who they want talking to them.”
Apart from the too-specific filter options for both text and photos, Mesh has a unique feature that coughs up first date suggestions – gigs, restaurants, parks – that would be based on both users’ interests. Snyder also confirmed that Mesh is currently trying to reach out to restaurants and venues to work with, so that they can have a mutually beneficial business model.
Snyder founded Mesh dating app along with his two friends, one of whom is Yeni Sleidi, a queer woman, who brought an LGBTQ perspective to the dating service. In a blog post on their site, Sleidi wrote that as a queer woman starting a dating site, she wanted to make it clear ‘that Mesh doesn’t put anyone in a box.’ The site states that ‘Mesh embraces all genders and sexual orientations without discrimination. We understand that people don’t come in boxes, and we won’t try to make you fit in one. We appreciate you for who you are and welcome you just the way you are.’
Well, what are you waiting for? Embrace yourself, your identity, and go find love. All the best!