Chris Nguyen at Cupid.com wrote in to announce the launch of a safety feature called FollowMeCupid.com. FollowMeCupid is one of those services where you enter your date details and a contact into the website. If you don’t check in on time your contact is, well, contacted.
FollowMeCupid is useful because you don’t have to explicitly tell your friends you are going out on a date, they only get the message if you fail to check in.
To try it out, I set up an event this morning, which is simple. I set the date, time, primary and a secondary contacts, for my “date.” The contacts were myself in both instances. As expected, I received text messages to my phone and email at the appointed times.
The only part that confused me are the checkboxes next to my contacts. What are they for? I checked one box and not the other and still got emails and SMS’s to both my contacts.
The emails are not formatted well, contain grammar errors and for some reason don’t contain information on how to contact the person that may be in trouble. Talk about useless. I said my name is Dave. What if my contact know’s more than one Dave? Do they call all of them? Did anyone test this on real people before announcing it? I think not.
I would never trust my physical well-being to a website run by a dating site without knowing a lot more about how it works. What’s the uptime on the site? Are there redundancy and backup servers spread across the country? Is the site connected to the internet and cell phone networks in fail-safe manner? What happens when the system crashes and is unable to send an SOS to your contact?
My overall reaction to FollowMeCupid is there are sites that already offer similar functionality, not sure why we need another one. The website looks good but obviously not enough thought was put into how people would actually use it. The ability to use the service on other dating sites as a link or API would be great. Perhaps version 2 will fix some of the problems and make it more useful.