Polyamorous community welcomes new OkCupid feature for open relationships

Posted at 10:02 AM, Jan 09, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-09 12:02:26-05
By Emanuella Grinberg


(CNN) — Are you in an open relationship and looking for more love? Online dating site OkCupid wants to make the search easier for you.

“Couples Linking” is a new feature that lets couples join their profiles. The feature is open to people who identify as “seeing someone,” “married” or “in an open relationship” and are looking for others to join their relationship. The feature will also help singles looking to join an open relationship by identifying couples by gender and sexual orientation.

The addition was hailed by many who identify as non-monogamous or polyamorous, terms broadly used to describe people openly involved in relationships with more than one person. These communities already consider OkCupid the most welcoming of the major dating sites for having added settings to accommodate them.

OkCupid has implemented settings to serve a broader range of romantic interests by adding “open relationship” and “non-monogamous” to relationship status options in 2014 followed by 12 sexual orientation and 22 gender options, all firsts for a major dating site.

“You want to meet people like you so having the site identify you as non-monogamous is a very big deal,” said Pepper Mint, a San Francisco-based advocate for non-monogamy who organizes poly-friendly events.

The new feature also looks promising for “couples dating,” he said — two people looking for someone together without having to create a joint profile.

“It’s good news but it’s not just OkCupid being generous,” he added. “It’s well-known in the poly community that if you want to date online you go to OkCupid. What we’re really seeing is non-monogamous purchasing power.”

OkCupid readily admits that the feature comes in response to growing interest among users in relationships with more than one person at a time, be it flings, casual hookups or committed relationships.

From 2010 to 2015, the site saw an increase from in positive responses related to multiple partners, OkCupid chief product officer Jimena Almendares said, including “Would you consider dating someone who is already involved in an open or polyamorous relationship?” and “Would you consider being part of a committed polyamorous relationship?”

“Now, couples can identify themselves, and users searching for a non-monogamous relationship can find them more easily,” Almendares said. “Also, users searching for monogamous relationships only will not see profiles of users in non-monogamous relationships.”