Amanda Bradford knows the future means we’ll find more connection online

Amanda Bradford knows the future means we’ll find more connection online
Image: Courtesy Amanda Bradford
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It took a global pandemic and stay-at-home orders for 1.5 billion people worldwide, but something is finally occurring to us: The future we thought we expected may not be the one we get.

We know that things will change; how they’ll change is a mystery. To envision a future altered by coronavirus, Quartz asked dozens of experts for their best predictions on how the world will be different in five years.

Below is an answer from Amanda Bradford. After stints at Salesforce and Google, she founded online dating site The League in 2014.

Over the last few months, the world has moved quickly to adapt to these changing times. Dating has been no exception. Covid-19 has certainly changed the way we interact and connect. However, in times of crisis, people are clearly looking for contact and support, and they’re finding it on dating apps like The League. This means a dramatic decrease in face-to-face interaction, but how does this affect your dating life?

At The League, we have made significant changes to keep people connected now more than ever during these unprecedented times. We’ve updated our app to include a live video function so you can talk to potential matches face-to-face without sharing private contact information.   We’ve added an extra session of our video speed dating event, League Live, each week, giving you double the chance of connecting with a new face over video.

The numbers don’t lie—since March we’ve seen a huge increase in our League Live sessions and a 41% increase in video chat usage. People are getting comfortable dating online.

In five years, people will prefer to meet online first before meeting in person. They’ll find it safer to video chat with someone from the comfort of their own home before taking any risks by meeting them in person. They’ll find it more efficient to see if they have a connection online first before taking the next step. Dating apps will continue to innovate to support these needs, offering more video options and more ways to connect digitally instead of physically.

What we are seeing now is that our users are spending more time having conversations and getting to know each other through the app since they can’t immediately meet up in person. We think this trend will continue, with dating apps moving away from their ‘hook-up’ stigma and users actually utilizing the features to spend more time getting to know someone personally and building those connections before they move to any physical contact.

The dating world is changing thanks to coronavirus, but it’s not all bad! The technology we have has allowed us to stay more connected than ever, while staying safe.

To read more New Normal answers, click here.