PlentyofFish Forums Gone and New Search Features

POF (Plenty of Fish)
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With the recent downtime of PlentyofFish a number of members contacted me asking a few questions about the dating site. One of them was:

... can you tell me what happened to the POF Forums/Message Board?

To my surprise, it looked like at first glance that the forums have been removed from Plentyoffish.com. The forums were quite popular on the site with hundreds of posts being added every day. Looking deeper into the problem the person who asked me this question said he found that the forums still existed but the link to them had been removed from PlentyofFish a while ago. He then asked me why? My best educated guess is that the forums were too distracting to members. The owner of POF wanted people to use his dating site where ads are being displayed. The more ads viewed and clicked on by visitors the more money the website will make (this is how most websites and publications make money, including the one you are reading now). Since the forums don't display ads (and therefore do not make money) I figure that is why the link to them was removed. With no link, new members wouldn't find out about the forums and stay just on the dating site while still allowing the older members who knew about the forums to continue to use them.

For those of you looking for the PlentyofFish forums, you can still find them here or, if you like you could try posting in our own dating site advice forums.

While I was checking out the PlentyofFish forum issue I notice that there were a few new features. First off it looks like Upgraded Members (those of you who paid for the Serious Members Badge) now have their profiles displayed to local users at the top of their search results. Originally the upgraded membership was suppose to show your intent to the dating community that you are serious about dating (see Story), that is why it was called the Serious Member Profile Upgrade. As we thought though, this badge has slowly but surely morphed into a full membership upgrade that now even affects the search results. I am not saying this is a bad thing as we knew it would eventually happen, it was just funny how POF didn't originally want people to think they had a paid membership.

A few other new features I noticed included some search options. You can now search for users in a specified zip code who logged in at least once a day. The average user displayed by this search actually logs in 3 times a day to PlentyofFish. The other new search option is a "Will Respond" search. This is supposed to return users who will most likely respond to a message from you if you view their profile. The average user from this search last logged in about 20 hours ago and they are expected to be online again in the next 3 hours. Both of these search options are a great idea!

The last new item I found is a statistic. According to PlentyofFish, every day 1.4 million people use their dating site. In 2009, this number was 900 thousand.

For more details on this popular online dating site, please read our review of PlentyofFish.