The news: Online dating can generally be summed up in a single phrase: "It's a jungle out there."
But a new company is battling the romantic underbrush with a new weapon — science.
Singld Out is matching prospective daters by what's in their DNA. When selecting a match, the service — with help from the company Instant Chemistry — looks at their clients' immune systems, Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) systems and serotonin transporters.
What? According to the company, couples with different immune systems tend to work well together.
The HLA system helps people identify these differences by producing a unique scent for each person to be used as a marker. Similarly, Singld Out claims the serotonin transporter gene predicts marital satisfaction by moderating changes in positive and negative emotional behavior.
When these things match up, true love is inevitably around the corner: "We are the first in the online dating industry to bridge the gap between the digital and biological world of Love," their website trumpets. (They also use personality tests and LinkedIn profiles to really solidify the match.)
Is this the future? There's a seemingly endless parade of online dating services, from OkCupid and match.com to more niche sites like ChristianMingle and FarmersOnly. In the never-ending quest for love, companies are constantly engineering new ways to help us meet our next date (or sexual partner).
But Singld Out is ushering in a new age: It's telling us to stop swiping our phones and start swabbing our cheeks. Sure, it probably wasn't what our great-grandparents had in mind when they dreamed about scientific advancement, but they also had it easier: There weren't constantly listening to fraught arguments over hookup culture and casual sex, and the work/life (read: romance) balance wasn't quite as out of whack as it is now.
And yet: A service like Singld Out — which relies heavily on precision and the pressure to "get it right" — takes some of the fun out of dating. It may play the part of the perfect matchmaker, but it leaves little in the way of exploration and discovery for the couple.
Still, it probably beats sitting at home alone with Netflix and a pint of ice cream. So good luck, Jon and Danielle — let us know how those serotonin transporters are doing in 20 years.