What’s Your Price – Website Reviews
REVIEW NUMBER ONE:
Review of WhatsYourPrice.com
- Whats Your Price – Homepage
WhatsYourPrice.com intrigued me from the very start because of all the hype it’s gotten since it was launched by the same people from SeekingArrangement.com. What’s got people’s panties in a twist over this new sugar daddy dating site? Well, it’s probably the blatant honesty that’s freakin’ everyone out. This doesn’t work like your average dating site where you register and then pay a membership to get the most from the service. The deal here is that you offer payment to the people that you want to date and if your offer is accepted, then you get to arrange your first date with that person. We all know that a sugar daddy-sugar baby relationship is based around money. The sugar baby is rewarded financially for the time she devotes to her sugar daddy, but for some reason putting it out there with tag lines like “For the Generous – Date beautiful people – Guaranteed” and “For the Attractive – Get Paid for Dating – Guaranteed”, has got some people upset. Well, I say kudos for the honesty and clarity! This honest and real approach is the same reason why I appreciated their other site in the first place so how can I not marvel at the fact that WhatsYourPrice.com takes it a step further?
Dating Site Asks Women What’s Your Price, Is It Really Prostitution?
When I first heard the commercial for the dating site WhatsYourPrice.com I thought it was a joke. As I listened to the description of the site–which allows users to set prices they’d either pay or charge for dates–I couldn’t help thinking it sounded a little like prostitution.
I made a note to myself to go to the website to check it out (for curiosity’s sake) and, yeah, I’m still convinced that it’s verrrrrry close to prostitution.
WhatsYourPrice.com breaks users into two categories: The attractive (women) and The generous (men). It allows women to create profiles and name their own price for a date. So, if you think you’re worth $100, you can charge that amount for a first date. The man would then pay you $100, and you’d make money simply by going out on the date. On the flip side, a “generous” user can say he’d pay $100 for a date, and interested women can vie for his interest and snag a date that would pay them (the woman) $100.
Although the site insists the money is to illustrate interest and not sex, it sounds a little creepy to me. But according to the site’s testimonials seems to work.
One user wrote: “I had a wonderful date with a wonderful guy on Sat Oct.1st.He was a gentleman.He flew in from NYC,w had a great time.And the way he gave me the money was very creatve.So thank you for your site.”
While another (a Black woman), said: “It was nerve racking at first, wasnt really sure what to talk about but as the date progressed (and the drinks kept rolling in) It turned out to be a wonderful date and I left with cash in hand!!!”
Yet another user wrote: “I had a wonderful evening with a true gentleman!
He gave me 300. for our date and I enjoyed the evening so much we have a second date planned next week! I can hardly wait to see him again!”
And the most interesting review so far, included a morning after: “Within the first 10 days I have been on four dates through the site, and what’s interesting is that the money aspect means something different each time. I had one date give me back my money… the next morning. In bed.”
One thing I noticed as I scrolled through the site was that most of the testimonials included descriptions of cash exchanges, shopping sprees, and 5-star restaurants. But what I didn’t notice very much of (besides people of color), however, were love connections. Most of the women raved about the “polite” and “sweet” men they met, but very few talked about meeting “the one.”
I know dating can be tough, but by making men pay for not only the date (going dutch isn’t an option), but also the mere OPPORTUNITY to go out on the date, seems a little weird.
But what do you think? Does paying for a chance to date weed out the lames or is this site just another place to advertise the oldest job in the world?
Would you sign up?
REVIEW NUMBER THREE:
Freakonomics is no stranger to studying prostitution, as discussed in Superfreakonomics. We are slightly less familiar, however, with a gray area of prostitution — “dating websites” that connect rich customers with attractive poor customers. Though these are by no means a new phenomena, a website has recently come to our attention that uses a dating website platform to ask what we all wonder about in one context or another: what’s your price?
Whatsyourprice.com auctions off dates and claims to be inspired by the charity dating model. It is divided into two halves: “Date Generous People” and “Date Attractive People” — apparently you’re either looking for one or the other. Upon a cursory read, the generous users seem to be overwhelmingly male, and the attractive users overwhelmingly female (and pictured in bathing suits). Each profile includes an “About Me” section and a “First Date Expectations” section. Several “attractive” members, it should be noted, specify that they will not fly Economy Class.
The homepage states:
Stop wasting time. Successful and generous people will pay for the chance to impress you on a first date. Traditional online dating can cost you both time and money. Here, you‘ll enjoy meeting people who will fight to show you they are worth your time.
Join Now, it’s 100% Free
Founded by Brandon Wade, the site purports to simply be upholding the tenets of capitalism. Wade describes himself as a graduate of MIT and the founder of websites seekingarrangement.com and seekingmillionaire.com. Are you noticing a theme here? In his own words:
When capitalism is mixed in with dating, all of a sudden people start concluding “it must be prostitution.” But does paying money for a cup of coffee every morning mean Starbucks is engaging in prostitution? Does paying for gas every time you fill up at the gas station mean that Mobil or BP is pimping? Does donating money to the Church every Sunday morning equate religion to prostitution? Obviously not, and obviously buying a First Date isn’t either.
The original homepage included a man surrounded by five women holding price tags; it has since been changed to something more demure. The site has three easy steps: uploading a profile, negotiating a price, and setting up a date. It also includes some helpful dating etiquette reminiscent of craigslist warnings:
* Do Not pay or ask anyone for payment prior to meeting for a date
* If someone asks you to send money by Western Union, report them immediately
* Generous members are expected to pay for the date (there’s no going dutch here)
* Our advice: Pay 50% of the date at the start of the date, and 50% at the end
* Do Not accept personal checks or cashier’s checks – there’s just too much fraud
One wonders, though, what services are being provided in a date. Conversation? Company? Something more? The “First Date Expectations” section on individual profiles doesn’t clarify much, either. In his blog posts, Wade often quantifies aspects of dating in terms of age, gender, income, etc. He gives insights into what kind of money is involved in these dates and writes:
Results of our study: Men seeking casual or no-strings-attached relationships paid an average of $121 for a first date, whereas single men looking for serious long-term relationships paid an average of $194 for the opportunity of finding love. However, men who seek only casual or no-strings attached relationships tend to be serial daters and more prolific, paying for first dates over 2.1 times more, than commitment-minded men.
Whatsyourprice.com has been featured on several media outlets, including HuffPo, the San Francisco Chronicle and Fox Business News.
So we must ask, dear reader, what’s your price?