Tag: Steven Ward

Love Lab’s Video Feature

steven ward selfie-guy

Since Love Lab’s inception, we’ve been talking about one of the universal problems with dating apps – that you don’t know if the person you’re texting with actually looks like their picture. This is why Love Lab not only includes facial recognition software, but also a disappearing video message feature, like Snapchat, so you can actually speak back and forth with someone you’re interested in without giving any personally identifiable information like phone number or Skype contact. But the video feature offers much more than just verification of what someone looks like.

There were a couple of studies conducted in the late 60’s that determined way back then that 93% of communication is nonverbal. Whether you believe this statistic or not, it points to a truth – interpersonal interaction involves more than just words. If you’ve ever gotten a text and had to ask a friend to help decipher its meaning, then you understand this. When someone speaks to you, you hear more than just what they say. You also naturally interpret things like inflection and tone that offer layers of meaning. Add a live visual component on top of this and you get an even fuller picture.

What does this person look like right now (even relatively recent photos can be unintentionally deceptive)? Are they scruffy and alternative or clean cut? How are they dressed and how do they present themselves? Is the place they live in messy and cluttered or well kept? Are they energetic and bubbly or more mild tempered and subdued? All of these are essential questions for figuring out compatibility, and you can’t answer any of them accurately with anything short of a video.

There is obviously no substitute for meeting someone in person, but Love Lab gives you all the tools you need to decide if that’s a step you want to take.

Tinder at SXSW

steven ward tinder-movie

No wonder people keep giving Tinder poor ratings in the app store. At this year’s SXSW festival which wrapped up this weekend, users were encountering a major disappointment. An article in Adweek outlining what happened begins – “Well, this is sneaky – and for some a little heartbreaking.” I’d like to point out that “sneaky” and “heartbreaking” are probably the two top characteristics you don’t want associated with a potential date, or with dating in general, online or otherwise.

The article goes on to explain exactly what happened. “Tinder users at the SXSW festival on Saturday were encountering an attractive 25-year-old woman named Ava on the dating app.” Ava (pictured above) then pointed people to her Instagram, where “it became clear something was amiss. There was one photo and one video, both promoting Ex Machina,” a sci-fi film that premiered at the conference. The woman in the photo was actually an actress from the movie.

steven ward ex machina

While this may have been a somewhat clever advertising prank, it speaks to a larger issue with Tinder and many other online dating platforms. You simply can’t be sure who you’re talking to. It is very possible that people you are in contact with are misrepresenting themselves, if they are even real people to begin with. Someone can laugh at this article because people were just being mislead for a marketing ploy, but it shows that someone with more nefarious intentions may have the means to mislead vulnerable men and women into something much worse.

Correcting this problem is the main purpose of Love Lab. With features including verification of age, likeness to profile picture, and even criminal background, people at next year’s SXSW can make sure Ava is Ava, and not the face of some scheme cooked up by the marketing department of a movie studio.

Chemistry and Trust

Should chemistry be based on trust initially in a relationship? I was asked this question recently and the answer is obvious. Not only should it be, it needs to be. Without trust, and the feelings of comfort and safety that come with it, chemistry is stifled from the very beginning because people have their guard up. You can never truly get to know someone that way.

Some people misuse the word “chemistry”. They confuse it for volatility. They see two people who fight constantly, exhibit jealousy, and yet can’t keep their hands off each other and think this is chemistry. I disagree with this definition of the term. I would call this misguided emotion and uncontrolled passion. While some people may call self destructive relationships like this “exciting”, they are actually made to implode. They turn out to be the very opposite of exciting because the arguments and combativeness soon become repetitive and draining.

I’m reminded of the comedy routine by Chris Rock about marriage and relationships in which he says, “All good relationships are boring. The only exciting relationships are bad ones. You never know what’s going to happen tomorrow when you’re in a bad relationship.” While the last part of this comment is definitely true, I think the idea that the only exciting relationships are bad ones is a complete misconception. Stable relationships, from the very beginning when you get to know this new person who you care about to the later stages when you explore further interests together, are exciting. Someone with whom you can go through the experiment of life with – that is chemistry. Someone with whom you experience nothing but frustration and anger and only the sex is good – this is not chemistry. It’s biology at best.

TV Characters Need Love Lab

Steven Ward eye-candyIt’s definitely part of the collective conscious today: How can you trust someone you meet online? How do you know the person you’re exchanging messages with is really who they say they are? How do you know you will be safe when you meet this person face to face? The truth is that you don’t, which is why Love Lab is such an essential product in the current dating environment.

The potential dangers of online dating are so well known now, that they are starting to leak into the pop culture Zeitgeist. Right now there are several shows on TV with plots centered around this concept, and it makes sense why – it is a real fear people have so it resonates with audiences.

Eye Candy, a new show on MTV starring Victoria Justice, is a perfect example. This is the summary from the MTV website: “Eye Candy centers on tech genius Lindy, who is persuaded by her roommate to begin online dating and begins to suspect that one of her mysterious suitors might be a deadly cyber stalker.” This may sound a bit melodramatic, and maybe it is, but if you don’t think that it is based in reality then pick up a newspaper and read about any one of the hundreds of dating nightmares being reported.

On the slightly more comical side of things, MTV also has a show called Catfish, about people who date someone online, only to find out that they are not who they said they are. The beautiful Swedish model in the pictures, for example, turns out to be some guy who lives in his parents’ basement. While this may sound somewhat amusing, keep in mind that for the person who is being misled, who has invested time and emotion into another person, it definitely isn’t funny.

I’d just like to point out that the concepts for each these shows would completely fall apart if, instead of meeting someone through just another dating app, the people in them used Love Lab.


Check back here for more information and press releases on Love Lab, the exciting new mobile dating application for singles.