THE STREET - May 8 - Facebook will be venturing into the online dating world later this year. The news was "a bit of a surprise," given that the announcement came on the heels of the Cambridge Analytica data misuse scandal, according to Mark Brooks, CEO of the internet dating consultancy Courtland Brooks. "If they screw [Dating] up, they can really screw up Facebook," Brooks said. Brooks said that Facebook has elements that are perfect for an online dating platform, namely its vast reach of more than two billion users, but "if they are going to make the most of Dating, users have to trust Facebook." With the Cambridge Analytica data misuse, "it'll certainly cause some people to be reserved," said Needham analyst Kerry Rice. Rice also raised the question of whether pursuing an online dating service is worthwhile for Facebook. "It will never be their core business," Rice said. IBISWorld analyst John Madigan said that it is unclear whether Facebook will choose to revoke the ability of third-party apps to use Facebook profile information in this way, but it would seem anticompetitive and against the company's best interests. "It's just not fair," Brooks said.
by Francesca Fontana
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