Everyone’s First Profile Photo Is Now Black And White On The League

The League
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It’s been a big year for The League. The members-only dating app for “high-achieving” singles launched for Android in January, and has expanded to more than 20 cities including London, Toronto, Miami, Detroit, Denver, Seattle, and Portland.

Only a lucky few are accepted onto the app, after passing through a strict screening process that now requires applicants to be “attractive enough to at least look good in black-and-white photos.”

That’s right, The League is going monochrome.

The company announced Monochrome View in a blog post on October 24. The new feature displays every profile’s first picture in black and white, requiring users to swipe through all the pictures if they wish to see the same photo in full color. The question is: why?

“Colors can distract from the more important aspects of one’s dating profile,” explains the post. “Monochrome View will allow you to look at more than just looks and check out your potential Match’s witty bio or badass career!”

According to company research, members spent on average 2x longer looking at profiles that had undergone the black and white treatment than a control group looking at color photos. It’s not hard to imagine why - with so many key details obliterated in the desaturated images, users are forced to spend more time scouring for signs of potential attraction (Is that blonde hair or red? Blue eyes or green?) or abandon those snap, looks-based judgements altogether.

Plus, with physical characteristics obscured, your only recourse is to read the actual profiles if you want to evaluate a possible match. Imagine that.

Superficiality aside, The League says Monochrome View also encouraged members to be nicer and more open. Research found that when a user’s first photo was in black and white, they had a greater likelihood of being “hearted” and that those with profiles in greyscale had a 10% higher acceptance rate. In other words, users were more inclined to give each other a shot with Monochrome View engaged.

Lastly, The League calls Monochrome View an effort to cultivate a courteous community by making the app “feel like a black tie affair.”

“Although we may have some of the same people in The League as you may see on regular dating apps we want our experience to feel like walking down the carpet,” says the announcement post. “Monochrome View reiterates our rules of engagement and the fact that once you’re in the League we expect you to be on your best behavior!”

Consider this the incentive you need to refresh your stale old About Me. With your profile pic in black and white, your bio’s now in screaming color.