For many online daters, particularly those new to the “dating game”, meeting a new match can be a nervous affair.
To try and ease fears about both personal safety and potential awkwardness, most dating services let singles message their matches on chat to get to know them, and informally vet them, before meeting.
One app called The Grade has introduced a new kind of “review” process for online daters, called Peer Review.
This feature lets users give feedback on singles they’ve either interacted with on the app, or met for a date, in order to give users more insight into the person’s true character.
Feedback can include information about a person’s relationship status, whether they acted rudely online, if they are a friend or acquaintance, or if they misrepresented themselves on their dating profile.
And The Grade has said that its female users now feel much safer meeting a new match because of this feature.
Since the launch of its peer review system on 8th October 2015, the app has seen 15,000 reviews, with 83% of them giving positive comments.
The Grade claims that this high rate of positive reviews is leading to an increase in matches, with 78% of its users more likely to swipe right on someone with a good Peer Review grade.
The app’s survey also revealed that 84% of its female users feel safer when they can see reviews left by other people, and that 71% of its user base believes the feature is helping to filter out the “creeps” that many online daters fear.
President of The Grade, Cliff Lerner said: “For years, women have been looking for a solution to eliminate inappropriate behaviour on dating apps, and ‘Peer Review’ brings The Grade another step closer to creating an ideal dating community.
“Not only does ‘Peer Review’ better inform users about finding a quality match, but it creates a safer and more accountable dating environment, which has been our goal from the very beginning.”
The study found that The Grade’s review system is also influencing the way that male users act towards women on the app, with 90% of men who had previously sent an inappropriate photo saying they would not do so if it led to a negative review.
The top two reasons for giving a negative review were also unearthed during the study, as 92% of its users said that posting “misleading profile information and outdated photos” were the primary culprits.
Lerner added: “We believe our method of holding users accountable for their online and offline behaviour via ‘Peer Review’ is a true game-changer.
“By asking a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’ question as to whether the reviewee is a quality user, we’re able to incorporate feedback from singles after dates and real-life interactions while avoiding the typical pitfalls of free-form text reviews.”