OkCupid is a fun, interactive and highly entertaining dating site. Filled with features you'll only find there, this (mostly) free dating site tops my list of the best-of-the-best.
Overview from OkCupid
"What is OkCupid? It's a totally free matching service. It's also extremely accurate, as long as (a) you're honest, and (b) you know what you want. We don't claim to evaluate you perfectly, but we do claim to find someone who claims to fulfill your claimed requirements, exactly."
"We aim to be the best matching service on every front: superior technology, better math, better psychology. And of course, it's free, unlike all the others."
What a Membership Includes
Membership includes access to all of the tools, quizzes and matching features after signing up - which takes no more than 30 seconds.
Other than the now-standard dating site fare (emails, instant messaging, photo galleries, journals, and search functions), OkCupid also offers its members a "QuickMatch" feature (instant matching), the ability to see exactly where you and someone else match up (i.e. you both are more literary than most people your age, or one of you is less adventurous), the option to have friends 'tag' your profile with recommendations, a list of similar users to yourself or others, and the ability (after answering a certain number of questions) to create questions for everyone else to take and match other users with.
There are lots of different features on OkCupid to try out, many of which focus on Instant Messaging (or IM). Here are a few excellent tutorials to walk you through the process should you need some extra help learning the in's and out's of the system:
- Find Online OkCupid Users To Chat With
- How To Send Instant Messages on OkCupid
- How To Block Other OkCupid Users
- Locate Your OkCupid Chat History
OkCupid has more unique features than any other dating site - free or otherwise - reviewed to date. Just some include:
- A complex matching mechanism that allows its members to create quizzes and tests on thousands of different topics;
- Matching based not just on dating potential, but also on a 'friend' or 'enemy' basis;
- Integration with Facebook so that users can place their entire profile, or answers to any of their dating quizzes on their Facebook page;
- A "stalker" feature, which lets you see who has looked at your profile recently. The stalker option, unlike most dating sites, can be turned off as well;
- If you pay for a membership, there are no ads, however those who opt to stay with a free membership will still see few;
- The "FlagMod" feature (found only after you flag someone's picture or profile as inappropriate) which lets any user look at photos other users have deemed against the site's Terms of Service, and decide whether or not the photo should be removed.
As of July 2011, OkCupid has started beta testing of some additional features, in addition to their current iPhone and Android app offerings (review OkCupid's apps). In addition to their standard offerings, testing has started for the following location-based features:
- Broadcasts: Letting your current best matches know that you're willing and able to go on a date right now, as well as the ability to peruse your best matches' Broadcasts too (no longer available as of 2014);
- Locals: Shows members the closest, local matches to their geographical area and the ability to swipe either left for not interested, or right for definitely interested - great for travelers; and
- Notifications: An alert will get delivered to your smartphone, if you so desire, to let you know if one of your matches is hanging out close by (some folks say this is still available, however I've yet to have the option given to me with my account).
There is no cost whatsoever to use OkCupid, making it a totally free dating site. If you'd like access to who Starred you (either randomly by finding your profile or through the Locals feature), or if you want to turn off the "stalker" feature, you'll have to pay $69.99/12 months, USD.
The Bottom line
I've personally used OkCupid for several years, and although I haven't met a lot of people through the site, those I have (and the friends I know on it) have been well-matched according to the mechanisms in place. A fun place to hang out creating quizzes and seeing how you rate with others. I've never had a problem finding other users in my area (no matter how small the demographic I've chosen) but it definitely caters to the quirkier among us. Therefore, Ok Cupid is highly recommended for singles looking for someone new and exciting, for those wanting an alternative relationship (like BDSM dating or polyamory), or merely as a fun way to pass time.
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Note: OkCupid did not provide a free membership or any perks whatsoever to the reviewer; please take a look at About.com's Ethics Policy for more information.