Using Blockchain to Facilitate Better Relationships
Our personal connections are valuable and important. They have the potential to change the trajectory and the quality of our lives. Relationships are one of the definitive and lasting parts of the human experience. While everything around us seems to change, update, and digitize, the importance of our personal relationships remains the same.
Oddly, that’s easy to forget. Other goals like financial success, individual autonomy, health, and personal ambition, can crowd out the most important parts of our lives. None of these pursuits inherently facilitate quality relationships.
Conversely, great relationships do make it more likely that you will attain those traits. For example, businesses are significantly more likely to hire candidates with whom they have a personal relationship or a personal referral.
According to data provided by LinkedIn, “more than 70% of professionals get hired at companies where they have a personal connection.”Even more startling, “job candidates who have a personal connection are 8 times more likely to get hired.”
Interestingly, our romantic relationships work much the same way. Despite all the creative ways of meeting a partner, people overwhelmingly wind up with who they meet through a common acquaintance. In other words, introductions matter in relationships too.
With Match.com, eHarmony, and Tinder dominating our collective consciousness, it’s easy to forget that, according to some studies, more than 40% of couples are the result of a personal introduction or a common acquaintance.
That’s not to say that technology can’t play a prominent role in bringing us together. More than 40 million people actively use one of the many online dating sites, and eHarmony reports that “20% of current, committed relationships began online.” As our lives become increasingly digital and consistently connected, this seems to make sense. After all, the average person spends nearly two hours a day connecting with people on social media platforms, so it seems like a natural progression that we would migrate to online dating sites to forge romantic relationships as well.
Of course, there are a litany of reasons why this practice is more popular than it is successful. Most prominently, people still often end up with someone who was personally introduced to them. Tinder’s swipe algorithms have a difficult time accounting for that factor. As a result, online dating sites are swarming with people sending millions of messages while struggling to make meaningful connections with a suitable partner.
Now, there is a best-of-both-worlds approach that is more fully and adequately addressing the online dating market.
Ponder, a new online dating site brings together the ease and practicality of a digital platform with the effectiveness of a personal introduction.
Hosted on the Ethereum blockchain, Ponder is a decentralized dating site that offers a financial incentive for its users to play match-maker. In this way, Ponder is a mass-market expression of the personal introductions that actually drive people’s dating lives.
The process is surprisingly simple. Using Ethereum smart contracts and their native, ERC20-compatible token, Ponder pays users for playing match-maker. For instance, if a user introduces two friends on the Ponder platform, and the two people go on a date, Ponder compensates the match-maker with $10. It’s a small incentive, but, given the task’s ease and the intrinsic motivation to connect two friends, this reward is very effective.
In some cases, dating relationships progress, and the couple gets married. If they register their engagement with Ponder, the platform pays the match-maker an additional $1,000 for their role in the relationship.
Obviously, playing match-maker on Ponder isn’t the same as becoming an Uber driver. It’s not intended to become a job. Instead, Ponder provides the platform, the incentive, and the tools for people to most effectively connect with one another.
Several other blockchain-based platforms are working to facilitate better human connections as well. For instance, Steem, is one of the first decentralized social networks that compete directly with similar centralized platforms like Facebook or Twitter. In the same way, SocialX strives to bring people together through by providing a platform where users can share photos, videos, and memories with friends and family. Like Steem, it’s a decentralized social network that is actively pursuing better human connections.
Unlike Ponder, these services are not facilitating new, real-life relationships. Instead, they are a digital extension of the relationships that people already have and love. With so much of our lives happening in the digital space, and with the current platforms like Facebook facing so much scrutiny, these decentralized platforms are a promising proposition.
Relationships will always be one of the most important parts of the human experience, and our romantic relationships are still essential. Although, meeting people can be difficult, Ponder uses the latest technology to make the process more simple and more effective. Personal introductions are still king, and, with Ponder, they pay too.