PlentyofFish Surpasses 10 Zillion Members - Online Personals Watch: News on the Online Dating Industry and Business

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James Houran


This must be one of the most brilliant press releases I have ever seen in the industry! It is skillful doubt, but it speaks volumes about user experience and what online daters want. People looking for love (however defined) are looking for prospects who are genuinely accessible and of course attractive.

PoF is making the "accessibility" part easier for daters when offering its membership base the profiles of only active members. I've too often seen and heard about online daters becoming frustrated when their winks or emails are not acknowledged or reciprocated by others. Sometimes this is simply due to people ignoring those messages, but I have to wonder just often unresponsiveness is due to inactive profiles.

I have become a hard earned fan of PoF, as you well know from our interview about your site on Online Dating Magazine. You seem to be doing well teaching the industry how to truly treat the customer as the boss -- because the customer is the boss. Best wishes for continued success!

James Houran, PhD
Research Psychologist
Online Dating Magazine

Nannette Thacker

As the owner of since 1993, I've seen the purge problem as both good and bad.

The good: I sympathize with members who are there to find ACTIVE single Christians. The keyword being active! Who wants to search and find thousands of search results, and have to muddle through each profile, then when you think you've found Mr. or Ms. Right, you shoot them an email and never hear back because they really 1) haven't used the site in forever 2) have a bogus email address in the first place, so the mail notice will never reach them, 3) were a bogus account anyway, or 4) are a duplicate account of the same member numerous times (well okay, this last one is true of the big sites that tout millions of members, and has nothing to do with this sentence, LOL).

We are careful about purging members who are inactive, whose emails bounce back as undeliverable, and who create duplicate profiles or bogus profiles. We have a built-in scam tracking and spam tracking system and are quick to remove scammers. As well, we train our members to spot scammers, provide a scammer list and act quickly to remove scammers. Members who have belonged to the major sites lament to us how they never get a response when reporting a scammer, nor does the site remove the scammer.

So we are quick to keep our database fresh and active.

But on the other hand, we send out daily notifications to members of new members who join the site matching their preferences. We send them a mini profile to review, and if interested, they may return to the site and meet that person. Many of our members use these notices to determine when they will log in next. And our purging system flags these members inactive because they haven't been on the site in so many weeks. So then we started getting emails saying, "Why did you shut down my account? I didn't want it shut down? Please reopen my account." So we're caught between a rock and a hard place. And yes, we do notify these members in advance saying, please come log in to keep your account active or it will be removed in 7 days.

So now, we try to do a combo of things, we purge all we can, bogus, dupes, scammers. We purge after inactivity, but not as soon as we used to, and in search results, members can specify to return all results or only those active within so many days.

Also, we post clearly with each profile, the last time the member was on the site, so people can realize that this person may or may not return to the site to read their mail. I've seen many sites that don't post the join date or the last active date and I feel this is deceptive.

This tends to keep everyone much happier.

God bless,

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