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Online dating service matches users by musical tastes

It’s Saturday night and your roommate has a big date. You, however, remain confined in your stuffy room. “Why don’t I have a date?” you wonder. Maybe it is because you have yet to experience gorillapop.com, a new online dating service that matches individuals based on their musical preferences.

The Web site, created by New Yorker Lance Massey, has only been running for 50 days, but many are already showing interest in the online dating service, which is free until Dec. 1.

Gorrillapop stands out in comparison to other online dating services because it connects people who share the same tastes in music. Massey said he originally intended to create a peer-to-peer application similar to Napster that would track downloaded songs and pay artists based on numbers of downloads.

After running into problems with organizing artists, however, he began brainstorming with his brother, who guided him in a new direction – one that led him to create gorillapop.com. “I began rewriting my interface, dropped the downloading portions, and added ‘gTunes’ to add an interactive component,” Massey said.

The online matchmaking service enables users to create “gTunes,” a list of their favorite songs. Users can access other user profiles to see if they share the same music, and if so, allows them to form new friendships or even relationships.

“Having spent far too many years in far too many clubs around the world, I’ve always noted that people tend to stick with their groups – goth with goth, hip-hop with hip-hop, rock with rock, etc. So I knew in my gut that music provided a primal way for people to identify and feel connected even if only for a weekend,” Massey said.

When asked for their opinion on a music-based dating site, students at the College expressed mixed feelings. Joanne Bertonazzi, freshman chemistry major, said, “I don’t think I’d use it because you wouldn’t really get to know the person only based on musical preferences. I wouldn’t use any online-dating service anyway. If I were to use it, it would probably be on a friendship level.”

Brandy Hawk, junior biology major, agrees. She said she believes it is a good idea, but specified that she would not necessarily use it as a means for dating, but as a means for getting to meet new people. “I feel that music is one of those things that unites people,” Hawk said. “I would use this one (online dating service) over other ones because it has a music component. Music is one of the first things that can connect people.” Although many enjoy music, some people feel that passion for music does not necessarily translate into romantic passion. Some people would rather use a matchmaking system that has a different focus.

Mike Crane, junior graphic design major, said he doesn’t think he would use the site if it is only based on music. “I would consider it if it had pictures and personality (components),” Crane said. “I like heavy-metal rock music and if there is a girl on there who liked the same music as me doesn’t mean I’d necessarily be attracted to her.”

In an informal survey, 40 students at the College were asked whether or not they would consider using gorillapop.com to meet new people. Twenty percent of students said they would consider using it, while 80 percent said they would not use the matchmaking system. These figures suggest that the majority of the College’s students may not choose to use an online matchmaking system such as Gorillapop.

Nevertheless, the site provides people with a new way to connect online. Massey is enthusiastic about his online service and is very optimistic about its impact and its future. “Music,” he said, “provides the sound track for people’s lives. I think over time, people will discover that even though they may not find their soul mates on Gorillapop, they’re going to find people they can just plain like – maybe even a lot.”


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