Celebrities

Luxy Dating App for Rich People Offered Money to Rename a City

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Luxy, a new dating app for rich people, seems to like provocative gimmicks to attract new users to their service. First, they launched their app in 2014 describing it as “Tinder without the poor people.” Now, they have taken their brand to the next outrageous level by offering $3.4 million to rename the celebrity enclave of Hidden Hills, California after their own app – Luxy, U.S.A.

Hidden Hills is an exclusive suburb of Los Angeles, home to celebrities Jennifer Lopez, Miley Cyrus, and the Kardashians. The app is trying to tie in its own service with the rich celebrity lifestyle.

According to an article in CNN Money, the app so far has 135,000 active users, including its latest member – an actor from Californication. (Luxy is apparently using this bit of celebrity news to help promote the app, too.)

To qualify to use Luxy, members must prove they make at least $200,000 per year – by providing income tax statements.

Luxy is not the first company to try and re-name a town to increase its brand cache. There have been other towns that have renamed themselves, thanks to some clever business marketing. Topeka, Kansas renamed itself Google for a month and Halfway, Oregon renamed itself halfway.com during the 1990s dot.com boom. But Luxy will be the first app to try and achieve this goal – and they want the name to stick for 10 years, rather than just a month or two.

There have been other dating apps catering to the jet set crowd. The League launched recently in New York and San Francisco, gaining a lot of attention in the press for its exclusivity. So far, the company has refused to allow more than 2,500 users in New York to join, but they do provide each of the members two VIP passes to give to friends. These friends are then able to bypass the 16,000 people who are apparently on the waiting list to use the app.

You might be wondering who all of these rich single people are. According to Luxy’s website, their clientele includes “CEOs, entrepreneurs, investors, millionaires, beauty queens, fitness models, Hollywood celebrities, pro athletes, doctors, lawyers and many more.”

So far, City Hall has not responded to the app’s offer to purchase the city name. The company’s spokesperson told CNN: "This is just the beginning. Texas is next. We can't wait too long. There are other cities who might want the publicity and the money more."

Hilary Duff Tries Tinder, Possibly For A New Reality Show

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Hilary Duff on Tinder

Little Lizzie McGuire herself, Hilary Duff, is officially on Tinder.

Her appearance on the popular dating app has been big news since a Tinder user came across her profile and posted a screen shot to Reddit. Naturally, there were plenty of skeptics, but Duff confirmed to radio show Valentine in the Morning that she is indeed on the app. And that's not all she had to say about her new adventures as a mobile dater.

"In my life I've always had really serious boyfriends, I've always met people through work, and I've never been on a blind date," she said. Determined to try something new, she turned to Tinder and called the experience “wildly addicting” so far.

Some would dip their toes slowly into the online dating waters, but not Ms. Duff. She jumped straight in and says she's talking to “probably about nine guys right now.” Not to suggest she has no standards – a shirtless mirror selfie is an instant swipe left, she explains, while a funny profile is likely to get you a right swipe.

Duff even went as far as to dish on her first Tinder dates. It appears her style is low-key, active, and affordable. Her first date was to a bowling alley, with the second scheduled for a go-karting track. She even brought friends along to the first date, making sure things stayed safe and laidback.

So how did things go on the big day? During an interview with On Air With Ryan Seacrest, Duff said “He was cool. He brought a friend and I had some friends there. He used to be in editing for reality shows. Now, he’s an actor and he just wrote a play. He’s an interesting guy.”

Still, it doesn't seem that sparks flew on the first try. She says the night didn't end with a kiss, and that she's unsure about the prospect of a second date. “I don’t know how I’m feeling,” she told Seacrest. “We’ll see how it goes.”

Duff likely has plenty more meetups to look forward to, as rumor has it cameras were rolling during her bowling date. Sources told TMZ that Duff plans to capture her exploits in the dating world on camera for a reality show that chronicles her life as a new divorcée.

So far her rep has no comment about the potential reality show, but Duff was allegedly seen on a second date and once again cameras were recording the proceedings.

Will you be tuning in if the Duff dating show makes it to TV?

Another Revenue Stream for Tinder: Music

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Recently, Gap came under fire from Tinder executives by posting fake profiles advertising their wares on the dating app, hoping people would swipe right to participate in a new campaign. The problem was that Gap didn’t get Tinder’s permission, so Tinder ordered Gap to take them down.

But Tinder isn't cracking down on fake profiles or spam-like ads for all companies looking to promote (though it did hire an agency who is cracking down on their spamming issue). Tinder only allows companies who are actually paying to post their fake “profiles” - and these companies are reaching their target audience of young consumers in a really big way.

Native advertising on Tinder works like this: the company creates a "profile" targeted to its audience, and uploads to Tinder. From there, users will come across the profile and swipe left or right, depending on if they like what they see. Companies that have done this recently include Starbucks and Dominos Pizza.

But now, it's not only companies looking to advertise - musicians are taking advantage of Tinder’s user base, using the service to promote new videos and album releases. Because musicians are constantly looking for new ways to reach their audiences and gather new fans, they have become more creative in their online promotions. Tinder is the latest tool, and recently did a campaign with singer Jason DeRulo.

Forbes reported that Jason Derulo became the first musician to use the Tinder promotional strategy to launch a new single. When users swiped right, they were given in link to a YouTube page where they could watch the brand new video for his new song, which was also getting a huge push via radio. The campaign was a success: over 1.1 million people swiped right (meaning they liked him) – in three days. The song became a top 40 hit, with 14% clicking through to purchase his song on iTunes.

Of course, it helped that the song was speaking to his target market – daters who are looking for a late-night hook-up, a la Tinder. In the video, DeRulo is shown fantasizing about a woman he had sex with, jumping out of bed in the middle of the night to go to her apartment, where she is of course fantasizing about him, too.

The success of the campaign will surely capture the attention of other musicians and companies who want to appeal to their target audience: young singles. These companies are also finding that effective advertising means meeting these people on their own turf – social media, rather than traditional stuffy ad campaigns. People are much more mobile, and looking at their phones more than looking up at a billboard.

One thing’s for sure, Tinder doesn’t have to worry about meeting revenue goals through subscriptions to its premium (and pricey) service. Companies will likely be more than willing to offer money for campaigns that have this type of success rate.

For more on this popular dating app you can read our review of Tinder.

Steve Harvey Launches Delightful.com To Help Women 'Become More Dateable'

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After teaching women to Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man, Steve Harvey is gearing up for a new crusade to “help women become more dateable.”

Anyone else cringing, or is that just me?

It’s not that the man hasn’t had plenty of successful ideas. He’s made it as a comic, a talk show presenter, a game show host, and the author of two relationship advice books, so he must be doing something right. But if that mission statement doesn’t immediately raise a red flag, you’re not reading it correctly.

Here’s the deal: Harvey has launched a dating website, Delightful.com, as a joint venture with IAC (the company that owns Match.com, OkCupid, Tinder, and a slew of niche dating services). In addition to being the face of the site, he will supply articles and videos to help subscribers “find love and keep it.” So far so good.

But then you get to the philosophy behind the site, which Harvey kindly shared with Forbes recently.

“Women are wired differently,” he says. Online dating is great for people who want to go on a lot of dates - which means it’s good for men in Harvey’s mind, because only men are interested in playing the field. “A man doesn’t have any problem at all dating several or a wide variety of people until he finds the right one,” he says.

On the other hand, “women don’t really want to just date,” explains Harvey. “They want to date with the hope that it leads to a relationship.” And the reason is simple: “A lot of women have that biological clock that ticks in them.”

He’s not the first to say so. And undoubtedly, in some cases, he’s right. But it’s also a painfully problematic approach to 21st century dating. Just when you thought we were moving away from ideas that divide the sexes, here comes every “women are from Venus, men are from Mars” cliché that’s been ruining things so far.

Harvey goes on to say that women are too picky when it comes to dating, and that Delightful will include advice columns for women on important topics like “how to become more datable.” For men, Delightful will offer “instructionals on being the kind of man who knows how to treat a woman.” At no point does it appear Delightful will explain that it takes two people to make a relationship work, and that men and women need to learn to meet each other halfway for relationships to survive.

And what does Match CEO Sam Yagan have to say about Harvey’s prehistoric approach to modern romance?

“It’s not like we’re standing behind everything he’s ever said.” Well ok then.

'Mean Girls' Lacey Chabert Stars In 'Christian Mingle' Movie

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We live in a crazy world. And at the moment, nothing is greater proof of that and the fact that there is a Christian Mingle movie.

Yes, that Christian Mingle. The dating website that promises devout singles it will "find God's match for you." Someone in Hollywood apparently thought that sounded like a rip-roaring good time of a rom-com, and here we are, wondering what led us to this strange and confusing place.

Oh yeah, and did I mention that the lead role is played by Lacey Chabert, most notable for her turn as the ditzy Gretchen Wieners in Mean Girls? It just gets better and better.

Allegedly there is also a plot. It follows Chabert’s character, a 30-something marketing executive named Gwyneth Hayden, whose life is perfect except for one thing: it's missing a man. In a moment of desperation, she joins the Christian Mingle dating site in hopes of changing her fortunes – even though she is not a Christian. Here’s a synopsis of the rest of the film:

“Gwyneth’s attempts at impressing her dream guy end in disaster when he calls her out on her ‘faux faith.’ In an honest realization, she sees her superficial life for what it really is, and she’s driven to create a personal relationship with God. In the end, He delivers on the true desires of her heart: ‘life-changing’ love.”

The director is Corbin Bernsen, an American actor known for a strange mix of television dramas, reality TV shows, and soap opera work. He began making religious films in 2010 and formed his own production company shortly afterwards. He also has one of the largest snow globe collections in the world because… well, why not?

Bernsen swears the film is not an advertisement or an endorsement of the Christian Mingle dating website, but…uh... I can't think of another reason for making this film, can you?

"You might ask why do include 'the movie' in the title?” Bernsen wrote on his Facebook page. “One of my first jobs is to let everyone know that this is a pure, straight up Romantic Comedy and NOT an ad or paid promotional piece for Christian Mingle.com – the popular dating website," Bernsen declared in a post on his Facebook page Friday.

 “They have been incredible partners and friends in allowing us to use their name and play an integral role in the film, but one of the first rumors I want you to help me dispel is that this is a commercial for them. Check out the trailer and you'll see...”

Well okay, Corbin… if that's what you say. You'll forgive me if I remain a little skeptical. Check out the trailer above and see for yourself.

Want To Date A Celeb? Tinder Might Be Your Chance

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Tinder just announced that it's reached a seriously impressive milestone: it’s made 1 billion matches between its users. That number was just 1 million in January 2013, making Tinder one of the most memorable success stories in online and mobile dating history.

In fact, Tinder has been so successful that even celebrities are getting in on the game. Although you might think it wouldn't be hard for good-looking, A-list of famous folks to find a date, it looks like they have a little more trouble on Tinder than we under-the-radar people would expect.

“We’ve had celebrities reach out to us frequently throughout the last year, sort of calling out various frustrations convincing users that they were actually who they are,” Tinder co-founder Sean Rad told TIME. “One impediment is that sometimes their Facebook accounts, which we pull information from, includes different names than their actual likeness… So [celebrities] were asking for the ability to modify their Tinder name and maybe have a verified badge.”

That's right – apparently all kinds of famous people want nothing more than to be able to swipe right, but their potential matches assume that the well-known faces in their profile pictures mean their accounts are fakes. Making it worse is the fact that Tinder requires Facebook account authorization in order to verify identity, and a lot of celebrities use fake names on social networking sites for privacy purposes. It's a combination that's almost guaranteed to make the average mobile dater send a profile straight to the rejection pile.

Rad and his co-founder Justin Mateen know first-hand what that feels like. For a while, they both listed themselves as the app's co-founders in their Tinder profile taglines. Again and again, they found themselves rejected by users who didn't believe they were telling the truth about their identities.

“It was awesome [to know celebrities are on Tinder] because it sort of validated our theories that everyone, even people of influence, need help forming relationships,” Rad said. “It’s important to us that our users know we are committed to authenticity on every level.” So with that in mind, Tinder is adopting verification badges like Twitter in order to confirm celebrity identities and allow the famous and non-famous alike to intermingle without fear of being scammed.

Of course, Rad won't disclose which celebrities are using the app, but he assures TIME that “These are A-listers.” Sochi Olympians admitted to using Tinder during the Games, and Lindsay Lohan told her Instagram followers know that she found her brother on the app, so you at least know that you stand a chance of meeting one of the world’s most talented athletes and one of the world's most famous redheads.