Anyone who has entered a dating app in recent years knows the accelerated dynamics under which they work. Sometimes the thumb slides from left to right so automatically that it’s not hard to find yourself yelling “no!” to the screen after accidentally missing a promising profile. An error so common that the applications themselves, such as Tinder or Bumble, have already been able to capitalize: if you want to go back and meet that person, you will have to pay. Unless you are over 50 years old. In that case, there is the possibility of a friendlier and calmer digital conquest environment, in which a human team responds behind the screen and the profiles are verified. At least that’s how apps like Ourtime are promoted, which are born oriented to this market niche. Taking advantage of the increase in the single population (it has gone from 36% in 2019 to 40% in 2021 in Spain, according to INE data), online dating platforms are constantly searching for generational cohorts to whom they can offer their services. The last spectrum in which they are focusing their attention is the so-called silver generation, a marketing term that refers to the members of the baby boom born between 1946 and 1964, that is, those between 56 and 74 years old. They are citizens with more purchasing power than their successors, and whose economic activity in 2019 generated 26% of the country’s GDP. A third of people of this generation who have dated in the last five years have turned to applications for help, according to a study by Choice Mutual in 2021. And the materialization of this trend in Spain is led by Ourtime, the app created in 2019 expressly for them, which belongs to the Meetic Europe group, and which questions the ways in which its younger sisters sell themselves to millennials. “Flirting at 30, 40 or 50 is not so different, but the difference is noticeable in terms of priorities,” Ángela Aznárez, a psychologist specializing in couples therapy and sexologist, points out to S Moda. “In my experience, I observe that in the more mature phases, people who want to have a relationship or meet new people do so putting stability first and they are more clear about where their limits are, what they want or don’t want. When you are younger, hedonism is prioritized more, having a good time here and now”. The strategy changes therefore. Faced with the exposure and the feeling that the options to meet someone are inexhaustible, which conscientiously favor the most popular and used dating apps among young people -seeking to retain users for as long as possible rather than making it easier for them to find a partner-, from Ourtime Spain want to highlight “discretion, usability and security” as its strengths. The first, through a blocking system that prevents profiles from being taken screenshots, the second, through tools and tutorials that make the experience of using the application and security easy through springs with which to report abusive situations. Only the latter is new and specific to this application. The other three features are built into Tinder, Bumble, and other apps targeting younger age groups. “Meeting people on apps wears you down a lot because it’s very easy to have different goals: serious relationships, companionship, casual encounters… There are people that you might just notice and with whom there’s nowhere to start a conversation. Going through this continuously is exhausting”, says Aznárez. “It is true that it is one of the most useful tools right now to meet people -more during and after the pandemic- but it does seem that it is a common feeling that laziness that can occur at certain times to continue there when you see that what you are Searching is not as easy as you might have projected.” It is precisely the fight against this feeling of being trapped in an infinite loop of profiles that differentiates Ourtime from the competition, with a selection of candidates offered according to affinity after answering a very exhaustive questionnaire in which the physical component is as important as in applications for a younger audience, or even more so. Not only do they ask you about your hair color and height, but they suggest that you specify your physical build and if you are overweight. As in other applications, questions about the level of academic training are included, but not about the level of income. As for how it triages personality, in addition to the questions that allow elucidating tastes and hobbies, a section is devoted to elucidating whether the user is very active or rather calm. To fill in these questionnaires, the page itself facilitates a chat with a virtual assistant who advises on the task. The website also offers as a novelty the figure of a Love Coach (a coach) who offers advice on dates and how to prepare them with streaming meetings through the YouTube channel or with private sessions that are only offered for a fee. Aurelio Gómez is that figure and in a telephone conversation he explains what kind of questions users usually ask him: «At a certain age we are more untrained and sometimes they ask us whether or not to kiss on the first date, how long it is convenient to wait for relationships sexual…” The answers are not very different from what I would give to any age group: that is very personal and depends on how the situation flows. «What we have perceived in these sessions is that at a certain age, sex is important but not so essential. Complicity is valued much more and the concept of sexuality is very broad: the caress, a kiss, the preliminaries…». We spoke with Teresa V., 56, who has been a Meetic user and had a brief relationship with a person she met on this platform, which is the main app of the parent company of Ourtime and is presented as the option for “singles demanding”. In her case, she entered the application after separating from her partner for 20 years and with the intention of meeting people, without much pretense. She says that the lack of security and reliability was precisely the biggest handicap and the reason why she, if she were single again, she would not repeat the experience of flirting on the internet. “I have the feeling that behind these platforms there can be anyone and that you will hardly know what they are like. I met a lot of nice people with whom I never got to meet but I also had a bad experience with a person who was uncomfortable for me and came to seem dangerous. That is why he praises the idea that this application has verified profiles, that is, that they have verified that the person who is represented in the digital profile corresponds to the person in the real world, and offer the possibility that people count their experiences in private to the human team of the platform, in the event of any uncomfortable, dangerous or reportable situation. In any case, this “human team” can only be contacted digitally and availability is not immediate. “I would like it if those responsible for the platform could be made aware of anomalous situations and that they pay attention to you”, continues Teresa V. when she talks about her past experiences in other applications. Precisely to respond to this demand, now in Ourtime there is the possibility of speaking immediately and 24 hours a day with a team of professionals from the company. In addition, so that users feel more sure that they are talking to the person who appears behind the digital profile, this application offers the possibility of making a video call to check who is really on the other side. That this person is the one who is still there when the camera is turned off, and not another, is something that Ourtime, however, cannot guarantee. “We already know that today meeting someone online is another way of doing it and prejudices about it have diminished,” says Aurelio Gómez, who in addition to Love Coach is a psychologist. “That is why it is important that it be given as a more human and accessible experience, easy to handle and that provides security to users.” Whatever age they are.
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– Article Written By @María López Villodres from https://smoda.elpais.com/moda/ourtime-la-app-de-ligar-para-mayores-de-50-que-renuncia-a-lo-peor-de-la-seduccion-online/