Best Dating Sites for Polyamory 2017
Being polyamorous and dating online is sometimes like trying to eat soup with a fork.

 

And unfortunately, there aren’t many choices. For instance, did you know that “The Match Group” owns OkCupid, Tinder, PlentyOfFish, and Match.com? That’s right. All those choices, but all owned by one company. No wonder they all pretty much SUCK!

We will not be reviewing Tinder, but will be looking at all the rest of these and see which one is best.

Since you gotta date somewhere, here’s a summary and ranking of popular dating sites and how they rank for polyamory and non-monogamy dating.

OkCupid

 

Website: https://www.okcupid.com/
Started: 2004
Rank: #1

Polyamory

Partner Linking: 9/10 — Site allows linking to 1 partner. While this doesn’t seem like many options, it’s a very hard option to find on any site and allow at least the confirmation of one verified partner (which distinguishes cheaters from ethically non-monogamous people). It’s the only major, mainstream website that allows anything like this. The only other sites that do this are popular, but not mainstream like FetLife.com (who is probably the only one that does it right).

Relationship Status: 9/10 — Site allows two “relationship types”, Monogamous and Non-Monogamous. While this doesn’t seem like many options, it’s a very hard option to find on any mainstream site. Again, only FetLife.com really does this right.

Sexuality

Sexual Orientation: 9/10 — Site offers 12 orientations, and allows up to 5 to be selected at the same time. Does not allow self-identification. Only allows

Gender Identification: 9/10 — Site offers 22 gender identifications, and allows up to 5 to be selected at the same time. Site does not allow self-identification. Site only allows “interest in” to be set to Men, Women, or Everyone, not all 22 gender identifications. Instead, site allows user to select to show up in searches for men or for women.

Personal Details and Safety

STI Status: 0/10 — Site does not offer method to post or search for positive STI results.

Identity Verification: 0/10 — No method offered to guarantee identity of a real person.

Privacy: 9/10 — Members may use their pseudonyms and may change them once per month. Paid members may browse in incognito mode. Chat’s may be blocked and/or reported. Members may be hidden, blocked, and/or reported.

Usability

Interface: 6/10 — Site is modern by overly simplistic. The mobile app is nearly identical. This works well as a mobile app, but makes the website seem empty. Site does allow anyone to chat free of charge.

Compatibility Recommendations: 8/10 — Has an extensive and integrated survey system which allows for micro-details to be included. Doesn’t just give an overall compatibility score, but breaks down individual areas of compatibility. Overall, the recommendation engine is the main way of finding users on this site.

Search: 2/10 — Searching for common topics mentioned in profiles is possible, but not very useful. Profiles may be bookmarked.

Total Score: 61/100

Plenty of Fish

 

Website: https://www.pof.com/
Started: 2003
Rank: #2

Polyamory

Partner Linking: 0/10 — Site doesn’t use non-monogamy linking.

Relationship Status: 3/10 — Site allows for 7 relationship status levels, all marriage oriented. For the non-monogamous, that includes “married”, “living together” which could be viewed as a very subtle way of signaling non-monogamy, though not useful for non-monogamous people who live alone or are not married.

Sexuality

Sexual Orientation: 1/10 — You’re either gay or straight.

Gender Identification: 0/10 — Site assumes you are either a man or a woman.

Personal Details and Safety

STI Status: 0/10 — Site does not offer method to post or search for positive STI results.

Identity Verification: 0/10 — No help here, you’re on your own.

Privacy: 6/10 — Members may use their pseudonyms, and may change at any time. Can’t find a way to deactivate or hide account, nor options for incognito browsing. Paid members may browse in incognito mode. Chats may reported. Members may be reported, sorta. You can report sexual and non-face pictures.

Usability

Interface: 4/10 — Site and mobile app both dated and clunky. Site looks like an interface from 10 years ago.

Compatibility Recommendations: 2/10 — Sometimes actually works to find non-monogamous people with limited status options.

Search: 6/10 — Search by location and age. Advanced search does allow to search for “living together” and “married”, so actually somewhat useful for non-monogamous people.

Total Score: 22/100

Match

 

Website: https://www.match.com/
Started: 1995
Rank: #3 (or whatever lower ranking we could possibly give this)

Polyamory

Partner Linking: 0/10 — Site doesn’t consider non-monogamy as valid.

Relationship Status: 0/10 — Site allows for 4 relationship status levels, all marriage oriented. And no, it doesn’t include anything like “currently married” or any other status that would be anything other than single.

Sexuality

Sexual Orientation: 1/10 — You’re either gay or straight, and I cannot find a way to change that after a profile is already created.

Gender Identification: 0/10 — Site assumes you are either a man or a woman.

Personal Details and Safety

STI Status: 0/10 — Site does not offer method to post or search for positive STI results.

Identity Verification: 4/10 — Not foolproof, but verification badges allow you to verify that you are on Facebook, have an email, have a Twitter account, have a Google+ account (who the hell has those anymore?), has a working phone number, and has a LinkedIn account. All of these are easily faked, though. Other sites that will be reviewed later require you to actually take a selfie with your driver’s license to verify your identity. If that’s a 10 out of ten, this can barely get a 4.

Privacy: 3/10 — Members may use their pseudonyms, but may only change their name if they are a paying customer. Chat’s may be reported. Members may be reported. Blocking options not clear.

Usability

Interface: 4/10 — Site and mobile app both modern and easily usable.

Compatibility Recommendations: 0/10 — Without a method to identify for non-monogamy, the recommendations end up being completely useless. Also, recommendations seem very random.

Search: 0/10 — Search allows for age, location, and various interest filters. But without non-monogamy status, is fairly useless.

Total Score: 12/100

Summary

Having done this for a few years, the only really usable mainstream site is OkCupid. And it’s not great. POF can be usable if you really work at it. Match.com is, unquestionably, completely useless.

The Winner: OkCupid

Next time, I’ll be reviewing non-mainstream sites such as SwingerZoneCentral, SwingLifeStyle, and FetLife.

DeWayne Lehman