Would you be willing to pay the girl or guy of your dreams to spend time with you?
Would you smile through a dinner date with someone you’re not at all interested in…because they were paying you 80 bucks to do so?
Brandon Wade believes you would. That’s the concept behind his recently launched dating site, What’s Your Price (Whatsyourprice.com).
Wade – the entrepreneur behind Seeking Arrangement, a dating site for sugar daddies and sugar babies – believes the appeal of a mutually beneficial relationship can be broadened to include serious daters who are tired of online rejection from the women (and men) who most interest them.
“On most online dating sites, there’s a limited supply of the more attractive people compared to the demand to meet them,” says Wade, who got the idea for What’s Your Price from his own experiences in online dating. “I’d used multiple dating sites and was not having a lot of success finding the right person. I figured if you’re willing to pay for somebody’s time (for them to) give you a shot, that just might work.”
What’s Your Price users are divided into two camps – “generous” users and “attractive” users. The attractive users – beauty being their currency – post photos and name a price they think a generous user should pay in order to garner the privilege of taking them out on a date. When a generous user stumbles upon someone that he (or she – but according to Wade, the vast majority of generous users are male) is interested in, they make a monetary offer for their time and the transaction begins.
“I think it’s a bizarre concept,” says dating and relationship coach Fran Greene, who is the former director of flirting for Match.com and the author of The Flirting Bible (Fair Winds Press, 2010). “I can’t imagine feeling as if there was equality if you’re paying me (to go out with you).”
The fact that there is a transaction between two people is something that Greene finds problematic.
“You’re paying me. So I am the merchandise and you are the customer. Does that mean that you as the customer can do whatever you want because you’ve paid to be with me? Can you act any way that you want?” says Greene, who dispenses relationship advice on her website, frangreene.com.
“How am I going to look upon (someone) who has to pay to go out with a woman? What does that say about how you feel about yourself? And what am I supposed to say (after the financial transaction)? Thank you? I mean, do I take credit cards?”
Several media outlets have likened What’s Your Price to prostitution. Wade laughs off these accusations. According to him, the site is about getting face time and charming someone. It’s not about anyone feeling entitled to sex with anyone else.
“Obviously, the website is controversial because of the name we picked and how we frame it, but underlying that is a really rational approach to dating, in my opinion,” says Wade, who explains that he did a lot of market research prior to launch.
And despite, or perhaps even because of the controversy behind What’s Your Price, the site has taken off. Despite only launching this spring, they have accrued more than 60,000 users and have confirmed more than 8,000 dates so far.
“People are very superficial on any dating site,” Wade says. “You only choose to write somebody only because they’re really attractive or they wrote something in their profile that caught your attention.
“The exchange of money is a very superficial process, but that gets you in the door to now have one or two hours with a person so they can get to know you,” he says. “You can show them the side of you that they’d never discover through an online profile or photo. That’s what we offer.”
Sexy Typewriter blogs about her dating failures – online and otherwise – atSexytypewriter.com.