Match Group, LLC v. Bumble Trading Inc.

Western District of Texas, txwd-6:2018-cv-00080

THIRD AMENDED COMPLAINT against Bumble Trading Inc. filed by Match Group, LLC, added to docket pursuant to {{63}} Order Granting Motion for Leave to File Third Amended Complaint.

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21 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS WACO DIVISION MATCH GROUP, LLC § § § Plaintiff, § § No. 6:18-cv-00080-ADA v. § § BUMBLE TRADING INC., and § JURY TRIAL DEMANDED BUMBLE HOLDING, LTD. § § Defendants. § § PLAINTIFF MATCH GROUP, LLC'S THIRD AMENDED COMPLAINT I. INTRODUCTION Match Group, Inc. is the worldwide leader in online dating, with multiple popular brands of matchmaking services, including Match, Plenty of Fish, OkCupid, and more. Plaintiff Match Group, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Match Group, Inc., owns Tinder and its related intellectual property. Tinder is one of Match's flagship brands. When released, it launched a cultural revolution in social networking and online dating. Tinder is famously characterized by a stack of cards containing photographs of potential matches nearby. If a user is interested in the person shown, the user drags a card to the right. If not, the user drags the card to the left. If two users are interested in each other, a match has been made, and the users are permitted to communicate with one another through the app. The app has become so well-known that an entire generation is often described as the "Tinder generation." Match, through Tinder, spent significant time and effort developing and implementing the inventions embodied in versions of the Tinder app and claimed in a recently issued utility patent. Match, through its Tinder team, has spent significant time and money advertising the 1 21 Tinder brand, including Tinder's unique draggable-card-based design. And Match has also spent significant time and money on confidential internal research and development, including brainstorming potential feature roll-outs. As a result of all of these efforts, Match has significant intellectual property rights related to the Tinder application and the Tinder brand. This is a case about infringement and misappropriation of that intellectual property. Bumble, founded by three ex-Tinder executives, copied Tinder's world-changing, draggable-card-based, mutual opt-in premise. As acknowledged by third-party publications upon its release, Bumble is "virtually identical" to Tinder in its functionality and general look-and- feel. The competitive reason is obvious. Bumble sought to mimic Tinder's functionality, trade off of Tinder's name, brand, and general look and feel, meet user expectations that Tinder itself and its brand created, and build a business entirely on a Tinder-clone, distinguished only by Bumble's women-talk-first marketing strategy. Compounding matters, Bumble has released at least two features that its co-founders learned of and developed confidentially while at Tinder in violation of confidentiality agreements. All of these actions infringe upon Match's valid and enforceable intellectual property rights. To be clear, this case is not about any Bumble personnel's personal history with anyone previously at Tinder. This case is not about feminism or a business marketed based on feminist themes; Match applauds Bumble's efforts at empowering women, both in its app and offline, and Match cares deeply both about its women users and about women's issues generally. Rather, this case is simply about forcing Bumble to stop competing with Match and Tinder using Match's own inventions, patented designs, trademarks, and trade secrets. Match brings this complaint to stop Bumble's unlawful use of this intellectual property. II. THE PARTIES 1. Plaintiff Match Group, LLC ("Match") is a Delaware Corporation with a principal 2 21 place of business in Dallas, Texas at 8750 N. Central Expressway, Suite 1400. 2. Bumble Trading Inc. ("Bumble") is a Delaware corporation with a principal place of business at 1105 W 41st St., Austin, TX 78756. 3. Although Bumble Trading Inc. continues to conduct business in Texas, as of the date of filing this complaint, Bumble has failed to comply with Texas's franchise tax laws. 4. As of March 16, 2018, Bumble Trading Inc. forfeited its charter and corporate privileges under Section 171.309 of the Texas Tax Code. 5. Bumble Holding, Ltd. is a corporation existing under the laws of the United Kingdom with a principal place of business in London, United Kingdom. III. JURISDICTION AND VENUE 6. This Court has personal jurisdiction over Bumble Trading Inc. and Bumble Holding, Ltd. consistent with the requirements of the Due Process Clause of the United States Constitution and the Texas Long Arm Statute. Bumble1 conducts business, maintains an established place of business, and has committed acts of patent infringement and/or has induced and/or has contributed to acts of patent infringement by others in the Western District of the Texas, the State of Texas, and elsewhere in the United States. In addition, Bumble's headquarters and principal place of business is located in Austin, Texas, within the District. This Court has original subject matter jurisdiction over Match's claims for patent infringement pursuant to the Federal Patent Act, 35 U.S.C. § 101 et seq. and 28 U.S.C. §§ 1331 and 1338(a). This Court has original subject matter jurisdiction over Match's federal trade secret claim pursuant to 18 U.S.C. §§ 1836-39 et seq. ("Defend Trade Secrets Act") and 28 U.S.C. §§ 1331 and 1343. The Court also has supplemental jurisdiction over the state law claims pursuant to 1 As used in this document, reference to "Bumble" should be understood to include both Bumble Trading Inc. and Bumble Holding, Ltd. unless referring to the Bumble app itself. 3 21 28 U.S.C. § 1367. 7. Venue is proper in this District for Bumble Trading Inc. under 35 U.S.C. § 1400(b) because Bumble Trading Inc. has a regular and established place of business in Austin, Texas and has committed acts of infringement in the District by making, using, and selling the Bumble app in the District. Venue is also proper as to Bumble Holding, Ltd. because it is a foreign company and is thus not subject to the patent venue statute in 35 U.S.C. § 1400(b) and is otherwise amenable to valid service of process and personal jurisdiction in this district. To the extent that Bumble Holding, Ltd. is not a wholly foreign company and is subject to the provisions of 35 U.S.C. § 1400(b), venue is proper because it has a regular and established place of business in Austin, Texas and has committed acts of infringement in this district by making, using, and selling the Bumble app in the District. 8. Venue is also proper for Match's remaining claims against Bumble under 28 U.S.C. § 1391 because Bumble resides in the District, has its principal place of business in the District, is subject to personal jurisdiction in this District, and a substantial part of the events or omissions giving rise to the claim(s) occurred within the District. 9. The Waco Division of the Western District of Texas is convenient for both parties. The Waco Federal Courthouse is less than 100 miles as the crow flies from both Bumble's Austin-based headquarters and Match's Dallas-based headquarters. 10. Match also has a significant server deployment in the Waco area. 11. Bumble, meanwhile, employs at least four people at Baylor University. One campus director, along with three campus ambassadors, plan events on and around the Baylor campus to promote the Bumble app amongst Baylor University students. IV. FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS A. The Creation of Tinder 4 21 12. The Tinder app was first conceived at and created by "Hatch Labs," a technology incubator owned by Match's ultimate parent company, IAC/InterActive Corp ("IAC"). Sean Rad, Justin Mateen, Jonathan Badeen, Joe Munoz, Chris Gulczynski, Whitney Wolfe-Herd, and others formed the early Tinder team that conceived, designed, developed, and conducted initial marketing efforts for the Tinder app. 13. Chris Gulczynski's position as Tinder was "Lead Designer" or "Chief Creative." Gulczynski was integral in designing the general look and feel of the earliest iterations of the Tinder app. 14. Whitney Wolfe-Herd's position with Tinder was "Vice President of Marketing." She assisted in promoting the app and encouraging users to sign up in the app's early days. 15. Sarah Mick joined Tinder in 2013, after Tinder's initial launch. Mick's title was "Vice President of Design" and she assisted Gulczynski on various design aspects of the Tinder interface. 16. First officially released in September 2012 for iPhone devices, Tinder revolutionized online dating services. From its earliest days, the premise of Tinder has been fundamentally the same. Tinder users are shown other users ("potential match(es)") based on certain parameters, including age range and geographic location. The user is shown a card with a photo of a potential match nearby. The user is then given a choice to indicate interest (or lack thereof) in the potential match merely by swiping the card right (if interested) or left (if not). Although the earliest iterations of Tinder did not include the ability to gesture left or right, once implemented, "swiping" on Tinder became a cultural sensation uniquely associated with the app. 17. Tinder is now one of the most popular apps in the world. B. Match's Tinder-Related Intellectual Property 18. Match has been awarded a utility patent, U.S. Patent No. 9,733,811 (the "'811 5 21 Patent"), entitled "Matching Process System and Method," in connection with the functional innovations embodied in versions of the Tinder app. The '811 Patent is attached as Exhibit A. 19. Match has been awarded another utility patent, U.S. Patent No. 9,959,023 (the "'023 patent"), entitled "Matching Process System and Method," in connection with other innovations embodied in the Tinder app. That patent issued at 12:00 AM EDT on May 1, 2018, or 11:00 PM CDT on April 30, 2018. The '023 Patent is attached as Exhibit B. 20. Match has been awarded another utility patent, U.S. Patent No. 10,203,854 (the "ʼ854 patent"), entitled "Matching Process System and Method," in connection with other innovations embodied in the Tinder app. That patent issued at 12:00 AM EDT on February 12, 2019, or 11:00 PM CDT on February 11, 2019. The '854 Patent is attached as Exhibit C. 21. Match also has a federally registered trademark, Reg. No. 4,465,926, for SWIPE in connection with computer application software for mobile devices, namely, software for social introduction and dating services. Tinder first used this mark in commerce on or around March 28, 2013. The registration for Tinder's SWIPE mark is attached as Exhibit D. 22. Match is also currently seeking federal registration for SWIPE LEFT and SWIPE RIGHT in connection with mobile applications for social introduction and dating services. 23. Match also has common-law trademark rights. For example, Match, through Tinder, has used the marks SWIPE LEFT and SWIPE RIGHT in connection with mobile applications for social introduction and dating services nationwide. It first used these marks in commerce on or around March 28, 2013. 24. SWIPE, SWIPE LEFT, and SWIPE RIGHT have become synonymous with the Tinder app. 25. For example, the Telegraph listed "swipe" as a 2015 "word of the year," writing 6 21 that its choice "reflect[ed] the popularity of the dating app Tinder, in which users can swipe their finger across the screen to approve or dismiss would-be dates." 26. The English Oxford Dictionary also specifically defines the terms "swipe right" and "swipe left" in connection with the Tinder brand: 27. The English Oxford Dictionary also indicates that "swipe right (or left) of dating app Tinder fame" was consistently one of the dictionary's most "popular look-ups" in 2017. 28. Similarly, a recent episode of the game show "Jeopardy" indicated that SWIPE LEFT and SWIPE RIGHT were trademarks of the Tinder app. 29. Indeed, Tinder's wordmarks have been famous since before Bumble even existed. For example, in a February 2014 article in TIME Magazine, TIME described the "swipe" in Tinder as "iconic." 30. Similarly, in February 2015, a CIO.com article described Tinder's SWIPE RIGHT as a "trademark" of Tinder. 31. In fact, the Atlanta Hawks, in connection with Tinder, hosted a highly publicized "Swipe Right Night" at an Atlanta Hawks game in January 2015, reflecting the then-existing fame of the mark. 32. Match, through Tinder, also has legally protectable trade dress. For example, the ornamental design claimed in US D798,314 is a non-functional design element with source- identifying significance, either because it is inherently distinctive or has acquired secondary meaning. 7 21 33. Match, through Tinder, regularly advertises this design, showing a user's card in the process of a "swipe right" or "swipe left." 34. Third-party Internet publications have recognized that this design is synonymous with Tinder, describing the "Tinder swipable cards interface" as "famous" and as taking "the app store by storm." 35. This card-stack interface has also been described as "iconic." 36. Indeed, this card-stack interface is so well-known and iconic that, when other businesses use similar interfaces in connection with non-social network, non-dating apps, third- party publications describe such uses as making the app look like Tinder. 37. As reflected by the United States Patent and Trademark Office's decision to grant the '314 Patent, this design is non-functional. 38. Similarly, Match has protectable trade dress in its "It's a Match!" screen, shown below: 8 21 39. As with the card-stack interface, this screen has distinctive trade dress source- identifying significance. 40. Match, through Tinder, also regularly uses this screen as a source-identifier in various advertising materials, including in the Apple App Store, the Google Play Store, and on YouTube. 41. Finally, Match, like most companies, has trade secrets related to confidential business planning and research and development efforts. 42. Match Group, LLC owns all rights to the intellectual property identified above. C. Whitney Wolfe-Herd, Chris Gulczynski, and Sarah Mick Leave Tinder and Create a Tinder Copycat, Bumble. 43. As discussed above, the early Tinder team included Sean Rad, Justin Mateen, Jonathan Badeen, Joe Munoz, Chris Gulczynski, Whitney Wolfe-Herd, and others. In December 2013, Chris Gulcznyski and Sarah Mick left Tinder. Wolfe-Herd left Tinder shortly thereafter. Exactly one year after the effective date of Chris Gulczynski and Sarah Mick's severance agreements, Gulcznyski, Mick, Wolfe-Herd, and Andrey Andreev, the founder and CEO of 9 21 Badoo, another online dating competitor, launched "Bumble." 44. Like Tinder, Bumble is a mobile dating app that relies on a card-stack interface and a mutual opt-in premise before users communicate. For those seeking opposite gender relationships, Bumble requires the female user to send the first message. 45. In the words of the publication TechCrunch, Bumble is "almost identical to Tinder, complete with the design of the profile pages, setting, and swipe functionality." (emphasis in original). 46. Texas Monthly recently wrote of Bumble: "the app looked suspiciously like Tinder. . . . [I]t has that famous swipe-right-to-match function, a piece of game play so brilliant it had become a cultural reference point." 47. Multiple other publications, such as BGR and the Los Angeles Business Journal, have described Bumble as a "Tinder-lookalike." 48. Like Tinder, Bumble users interact with "cards" containing photos of other users, as shown below. 49. Like Tinder, Bumble users gesture left and right on cards containing user photos 10 21 to indicate whether or not the user is interested in the person shown. 50. Like Tinder, gesturing left indicates a user is not interested in the person shown while gesturing right indicates that the user is interested in the person. 51. Like Tinder, two users cannot communicate over Bumble until they both indicate interest in one another. 52. Like Tinder, if two users both indicate interest, a screen is shown indicating a "match." 53. Bumble's "match" screen is nearly identical to Tinder's. At the top of the screen is a large exclamatory phrase set off in a font other than the app's default font. Below that, text indicating that the users have expressed a mutual interest is displayed in the app's default font. Below that, two circles, enclosed in white borders, display the photographs of the matched users. Below that, both apps include similarly sized and shaped buttons first presenting the option to either send a message and then, below that, giving the option to return to the preference- indication screen. Both "match screens" are placed against a dark background. These similarities are shown in the pictures below: 11 21 54. The "match queue" screen, where users can find new matches and ongoing conversations with other matches, is also essentially identical. The screens include circle contacts of various users at the top indicating matches for which no messages have been sent. These contacts can be scrolled through horizontally. Below that is a "messages" or "conversations" navigation menu, situated for vertical scrolling, where ongoing conversations are selectable: 55. One third-party publication noted when reviewing Bumble's user interface that this "match queue" is "mostly lifted from Tinder." 12 21 56. The look and feel within the chat screen is also nearly identical, as shown below: 57. Compounding the confusion from the copycat looks of the Bumble app, Bumble also makes extensive use of Tinder's registered SWIPE mark as well as its SWIPE LEFT and SWIPE RIGHT word marks. 58. For example, in its "About Us" section of its website, Bumble describes itself as an app that "shows you the people you want to see and lets you connect by a mutual opt in by swiping right." 59. On its preview in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store, Bumble indicates that it is an "industry-leading app [that] empowers users to swipe through potential connections across three different modes. . . ." 60. Bumble's "July 2017 Press Stats Visual," located on its website, describes the number of "swipes per month" Bumble receives in its app. 61. Bumble's "the Beehive" blog also contains dozens of instances of Bumble using the "swipe" term in connection with online or mobile matchmaking services. 62. Additionally, Bumble includes a section of "Frequently Asked Questions" 13 21 inquiring as to (1) why a user "r[a]n out of people to swipe on"; (2) why a user can't "start a conversation with somebody [the user has] swiped right on"; and (3) whether a user can "go back" if the user "swiped the wrong way." Bumble describes its "Backtrack" feature as a way to deal with the situation where a user "accidentally swiped left." 63. Bumble's "backtrack" screen also makes prominent use of the SWIPE and SWIPE LEFT marks, asking a user to "confirm below to bring someone back that you swiped left on" and to "swipe to backtrack": 64. In press interviews, Bumble's CEO repeatedly references "swipes," "swipe lefts" and "swipe rights." For example, in a CNBC interview, located at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jyOMHVrVrZo, Bumble's CEO discusses "swiping for opportunity," "swiping to network," "swipe left for no," "swipe right for yes," and that Bumble was getting "a lot of swipes." 65. Similarly, Bumble's CEO described in a Fox Business interview on November 23, 2015, located at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m5Ej92-mKkg, that on Bumble "you swipe on one another, and so if you both mutually opt in to have a match. . . you swipe right on her, she swipes right on you, it's a connection." 14 21 66. In another interview, from CNN Money on February 11, 2016, Bumble's CEO described Bumble's app as "swip[ing] right or left on potential matches." 67. Bumble's official advertising also makes use of the "swipe right" term. In an advertisement where two Bumble personnel provide tips for writing dating "bios," one of the "doctors" indicates that she would "swipe right" on a bio she found particularly clever. 68. In fact, it appears Bumble has taken additional, affirmative steps since its initial release to co-opt Match's trademarks and trade dress and trade off of Tinder's powerful brand. As discussed, in both apps, when two users express a mutual preference, a "match screen is shown." 69. Bumble's original match screen looked similar to Tinder's match screen, but it had some notable differences, including the location of the of the message and "keep playing" buttons: 70. Moreover, the screen previously animated the circle photographs to pop out and drop below the "keep playing" and "start a chat" buttons, a feature not included in Tinder's match screen. 71. Bumble has since updated to its app to mirror Tinder's. Moreover, Bumble decided to change the phrase "you both liked each other" to "you both swiped each other." 15 21 72. In July 2017, Bumble also released a paid feature, the "SuperSwipe." FIRST CAUSE OF ACTION: INFRINGEMENT OF THE '811 PATENT BY BUMBLE 73. Match incorporates by reference the preceding paragraphs as if fully set forth herein. 74. Bumble directly infringes the '811 patent by making and using a system that practices the claims of Tinder's patent. 75. Claim 1 of the '811 Patent claims: A computer implemented method of profile matching, comprising: electronically receiving a plurality of user online-dating profiles, each profile comprising traits of a respective user and associated with a social networking platform; electronically receiving a first request for matching, the first request electronically submitted by a first user using a first electronic device; determining a set of potential matches from the plurality of user online-dating profiles for the first user in response to receiving the first request; causing the display of a graphical representation of a first potential match of the set of potential matches to the first user on a graphical user interface of the first electronic device, the first potential match corresponding to a second user; determining that the first user expressed a positive preference indication regarding the first potential match at least by determining that the first user performed a first swiping gesture associated with the graphical representation of the first potential match on the graphical user interface; 16 21 in response to determining that the first user expressed the positive preference indication regarding the first potential match, automatically causing the graphical user interface to display a graphical representation of a second potential match of the set of potential matches instead of the graphical representation of the first potential match; determining that the second user has expressed a positive preference indication regarding the first user after determining that the first user expressed the positive preference indication regarding the first potential match; determining to enable initial communication between the first user and the second user in response to determining that both the first user has expressed the positive preference indication regarding the second user and the second user has expressed the positive preference indication regarding the first user; in response to determining to enable initial communication between the first user and the second user, causing the graphical user interface to display to the first user the graphical representation of the first potential match; determining that the first user expressed a negative preference indication regarding a third potential match of the set of potential matches at least by determining that the first user performed a second swiping gesture associated with a graphical representation of the third potential match on the graphical user interface, the second swiping gesture different than the first swiping gesture, the third potential match corresponding to a third user; preventing communication between the first user and the third user after determining that the first user has expressed the negative preference indication regarding the third user; determining that the first user expressed a positive preference indication regarding a fourth potential match of the set of potential matches at least by determining that the first user performed the first swiping gesture associated with a graphical representation of the fourth potential match on the graphical user interface, the fourth potential match corresponding to a fourth user; and preventing communication between the first user and the fourth user after determining that the fourth user has expressed a negative preference indication regarding the first user. 76. Claim 4 of the '811 Patent claims: A non-transitory computer-readable medium comprising instructions that, when executed by a processor, are configured to: electronically receive a plurality of user online-dating profiles, each 17 21 profile comprising traits of a respective user and associated with a social networking platform; electronically receive a first request for matching, the first request electronically submitted by a first user using a first electronic device; determine a set of potential matches from the plurality of user online- dating profiles for the first user in response to receiving the first request; cause the display of a graphical representation of a first potential match of the set of potential matches to the first user on a graphical user interface of the first electronic device, the first potential match corresponding to a second user; determine that the first user expressed a positive preference indication regarding the first potential match at least by determining that the first user performed a first swiping gesture associated with the graphical representation of the first potential match on the graphical user interface; in response to the determination that the first user expressed the positive preference indication regarding the first potential match, automatically cause the graphical user interface to display a graphical representation of a second potential match of the set of potential matches instead of the graphical representation of the first potential match; determine that the second user has expressed a positive preference indication regarding the first user after determining that the first user expressed the positive preference indication regarding the first potential match; determine to enable initial communication between the first user and the second user in response to the determination that both the first user has expressed the positive preference indication regarding the second user and the second user has expressed the positive preference indication regarding the first user; in response to the determination to enable initial communication between the first user and the second user, cause the graphical user interface to display to the first user the graphical representation of the first potential match; determine that the first user expressed a negative preference indication regarding a third potential match of the set of potential matches at least by determining that the first user performed a second swiping gesture associated with a graphical representation of the third potential match on the graphical user interface, the second swiping gesture different than the first swiping gesture, the third potential match corresponding to a third user; 18 21 prevent communication between the first user and the third user after determining that the first user has expressed the negative preference indication regarding third user; determine that the first user expressed a positive preference indication regarding a fourth potential match of the set of potential matches at least by determining that the first user performed the first swiping gesture associated with a graphical representation of the fourth potential match on the graphical user interface, the fourth potential match corresponding to a fourth user; and prevent communication between the first user and the fourth user after determining that the fourth user has expressed a negative preference indication regarding the first user. 77. Claim 7 of the '811 Patent claims: A system for profile matching, comprising: an interface operable to: electronically receive a plurality of user online-dating profiles, each profile comprising traits of a respective user associated with a social networking platform; electronically receive a first request for matching, the first request electronically submitted by a first user using a first electronic device; and a processor coupled to the interface and operable to: determine a set of potential matches from the plurality of user online-dating profiles for the first user in response to receiving the first request; cause the interface to display a graphical representation of a first potential match of the set of potential matches to the first user on a graphical user interface of the first electronic device, the first potential match corresponding to a second user; determine that the interface has received a positive preference indication from the first user regarding the first potential match at least by determining that the first user performed a first swiping gesture associated with the graphical representation of the first potential match on the graphical user interface; automatically cause the interface to remove the presentation of the 19 21 first potential match from the graphical user interface in response to detecting the gesture and cause the interface to present, on the graphical user interface, a second potential match of the set of potential matches to the first user; determine that the second user has expressed a positive preference indication regarding the first user after determining that the first user expressed the positive preference indication regarding the first potential match; and determine to enable initial communication between the first user and the second user in response to the determination that both the first user has expressed the positive preference indication regarding the second user and the second user has expressed the positive preference indication regarding the first user; in response to the determination to enable initial communication between the first user and the second user, cause the graphical user interface to display to the first user the graphical representation of the first potential match; determine that the first user expressed a negative preference indication regarding a third potential match of the set of potential matches at least by determining that the first user performed a second swiping gesture associated with a graphical representation of the third potential match on the graphical user interface, the second swiping gesture different than the first swiping gesture, the third potential match corresponding to a third user; prevent communication between the first user and the third user after determining that the first user has expressed the negative preference indication regarding the third user; determine that the first user expressed a positive preference indication regarding a fourth potential match of the set of potential matches at least by determining that the first user performed the first swiping gesture associated with a graphical representation of the fourth potential match on the graphical user interface, the fourth potential match corresponding to a fourth user; and prevent communication between the first user and the fourth user in response to determining that the fourth user has expressed a negative preference indication regarding the first user. 78. Bumble Holding, Ltd. is the listed distributing company for the Bumble app on the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store. Bumble Trading Inc. also markets and 20 21 distributes the Bumble app. Thus, Bumble Holding, Ltd. and Bumble Trading Inc. are directly infringing the '811 Patent by making and/or using the Bumble system. 79. In at least one version of the Bumble app,2 Bumble's servers practice all of the limitations of these claims, as set forth in the example below. For example, Bumble's servers electronically receive a plurality of user online-dating profiles, each profile comprising traits of a respective user and associated with a social networking platform. When a Bumble app user downloads and initially accesses the application, the user device is required to set up a Bumble account that is associated with the user's Facebook account: 80. Through the account setup process, Bumble receives from each user an online profile comprising traits of respective users. For example, as of March 15, 2018, the Frequently Asked Questions on Bumble's website indicates that Bumble "use[s] Facebook to help build your profile by importing your name, age, school, and/or occupation." Today, Bumble's FAQs "suggest[] using Facebook to help build your profile by importing your name, age, etc." 2 Bumble recently redesigned its user interface. The analysis contained in this claim relates to the prior version of the app. Differences have been addressed in the infringement contentions already served on Bumble. 21 21 81. Bumble's servers also perform the step of electronically receiving a first request for matching, the first request electronically submitted by a first user using a first electronic device. For example, after authorizing his or her Facebook account, the Bumble user is taken to the screen where he or she can indicate positive and negative preferences for various potential matches. At a point before those potential matches are shown, Bumble has received a request for matching. 82. Bumble's servers also perform the step of determining a set of potential matches from the plurality of user online-dating profiles for the first user in response to receiving the first request. In response to receiving the parameters set forth in the request for matching contained in the Bumble app user request, Bumble determines a set of potential matches for the requesting user based on parameters such as location, age, and gender: 83. Bumble's servers also perform the step of causing the display of a graphical representation of a first potential match of the set of potential matches to the first user on a graphical user interface of the first electronic device, the first potential match corresponding to a second user. Bumble causes the display of potential matches of other Bumble app users to 22 21 appear on the first Bumble app user's graphical user interface. The potential matches shown correspond with the determination of potential matches described in ¶ 78 above: 84. Bumble's servers also perform the step of determining that the first user expressed a positive preference indication regarding the first potential match at least by determining that the first user performed a first swiping gesture associated with the graphical representation of the first potential match on the graphic user interface. A Bumble app user may affirmatively select (or reject) another Bumble app user by swiping gestures. Bumble makes a determination based on this Bumble app user indication (e.g., swiping right or swiping left). Bumble determines whether a first Bumble app user has made a positive preference indication in the form of a first swiping gesture: 23 21 85. Bumble's servers also perform the step of, in response to determining that the first user expressed the positive preference indication regarding the first potential match, automatically causing the graphical user interface to display a graphical representation of a second potential match of the set of potential matches instead of the graphical representation of the first potential match. After determining that the first Bumble app user has expressed a positive preference via a swiping gesture (swipe right), Bumble automatically presents a second potential match: 86. Bumble's servers also perform the step of determining that the second user has expressed a positive preference indication regarding the first user after determining that the first user expressed the positive preference indication regarding the first potential match. Bumble compares the selected preference of each potential match (i.e., of a first Bumble app user and a 24 21 second Bumble app user), including making a determination whether the first Bumble app user and the second Bumble app user each expressed a positive preference for each other. 87. Bumble's servers also perform the step of determining to enable initial communication between the first user and the second user in response to determining that both the first user has expressed the positive preference indication regarding the second user and the second user has expressed the positive preference indication regarding the first user. In the event that the determination described in the immediately preceding paragraph results in a mutual positive preference indication, Bumble determines to enable initial communication between the first Bumble app user and the second Bumble app user. In the same-gender case, either participant may communicate. In an opposite-gender case, Bumble makes the determination to enable initial communication by allowing the female user to message the male user. 88. Bumble's servers also perform the step of, in response to determining to enable initial communication between the first user and the second user, causing the graphical user interface to display to the first user the graphical representation of the first potential match. For example, upon determining that mutual positive preference gestures have been made, Bumble presents the following graphical representation of the first potential match: 25 21 89. Bumble's servers also perform the step of determining that the first user expressed a negative preference indication regarding a third potential match of the set of potential matches at least by determining that the first user performed a second swiping gesture associated with a graphical representation of the third potential match on the graphical user interface, the second swiping gesture different than the first swiping gesture, the third potential match corresponding to a third user. Bumble determines whether the first Bumble app user expressed a negative preference for a third Bumble app user by determining whether the first Bumble app user swiped left: 90. Bumble's servers also perform the step of preventing communication between the first user and the third user after determining that the first user has expressed the negative preference indication regarding the third user. For example, if the first Bumble app user expressed a negative preference for a third Bumble app user, the Bumble app will not allow the first and third Bumble app users to communicate through the app. 91. Bumble's servers also perform the step of determining that the first user expressed a positive preference indication regarding a fourth potential match of the set of potential matches 26 21 at least by determining that the first user performed the first swiping gesture associated with a graphical representation of the fourth potential match on the graphical user interface, the fourth potential match corresponding to a fourth user. A Bumble user may affirmatively select (or reject) another Bumble app user by swiping gestures. Bumble makes a determination based on this Bumble user indication (i.e., swipe right or swipe left). Bumble determines whether a first Bumble app user has made a positive preference indication in the form of a first swiping gesture. 92. Finally, Bumble's servers perform the step of preventing communication between the first user and the fourth user after determining that the fourth user has expressed a negative preference indication regarding the first user. Upon a determination that a fourth Bumble app user expressed a negative preference for a first Bumble app user, Bumble will prevent communication between those users. 93. At least some servers perform this method in the United States. 94. Bumble also indirectly infringes the '811 Patent by inducing infringement by others, such as end-user customers, by, for example, encouraging and instructing end-user customers to install and use the Bumble app in the United States. 95. Bumble took the above actions intending to cause infringing acts by others. 96. Bumble was also aware of the '811 Patent. For example, on a February 7, 2018 earnings call, Match Group, Inc. CEO Mandy Ginsberg discussed the '811 Patent. 97. That same day, the online publication Axios indicated that it had reached out to Bumble for a comment about the '811 Patent. 98. Additionally, it was well-publicized that Tinder was seeking a patent related to its "swipe" functionality. For example, a June 22, 2015 article in Adweek indicated that Tinder was prosecuting a patent related to "swipe" functionality. 27 21 99. Moreover, Whitney Wolfe-Herd, Chris Gulcznyski, and Sarah Mick were all still at Tinder when the application maturing into the '811 Patent was filed in October 2013. 100. If Bumble did not know that the actions it encouraged constituted infringement of the '811 Patent, Bumble nevertheless subjectively believed there was a high probability that others would infringe the '811 patent but took deliberate steps to avoid confirming that it was actively inducing infringement by others. 101. Bumble also indirectly infringes the '811 Patent by contributing to infringement by others, such as end-users, by providing within the United States software components for operating Bumble's app and interacting with the servers associated with Bumble's app. These software components are, for example, the Bumble app, and the download package that contains the Bumble app for interacting with Bumble's servers. Bumble's end-users directly infringed the '811 Patent by, for example, installing and using the Bumble app in the United States to use the Bumble system in the United States and Bumble servers in the United States. These software components are known by Bumble to be especially made or adapted for use in Bumble's infringing system. 102. Bumble has known these components to be especially made or especially adapted for use in infringement of the '811 patent and that these components are not a staple article or commodity of commerce suitable for substantial non-infringing use. Alternatively, Bumble subjectively believed there was a high probability that these components were especially made or especially adapted for use in an infringement of the '811 Patent and that these components are not a staple article or commodity of commerce suitable for substantial non-infringing use but took deliberate steps to avoid confirming the same. 103. Bumble's infringement of the '811 Patent is and has been willful. Bumble at a 28 21 minimum knew or had reason to know of certain facts which would lead a reasonable person to realize their actions were unreasonably risky with respect to infringement of the '811 Patent. For example, as discussed above, Bumble is and has been aware of the '811 Patent. To Match's knowledge, Bumble has not attempted to avoid infringement of the patent or to design around it. Bumble designed its app to mirror Tinder and its functionality specifically to compete with Tinder and avoid a barrier to entry in the market by mimicking Tinder's functionality in connection with an online matchmaking app. 104. The inventions claimed in the '811 patent are not directed to an abstract idea. Instead, the claims are directed to an improvement in computer and user interface functionality as well as in online social networking. 105. Specifically, the inventors of the continuation-in-part aspect of the '811 patent set out to improve the user interface functionality in dating and other matchmaking apps. The swipe on a graphical representation of a user to denote positive, and of a different swipe on the graphical representation to denote negative, in connection with a mutual opt-in matchmaking app, was a non-conventional, concrete improvement in how touch screen user interfaces interact with users sifting through and making binary choices, such as indicating positive or negative preferences related to potential matches. Although the general gesture of swiping may have been known in the prior art, the specific application to a graphical representation of a user in the specific matchmaking context claimed, in order to make binary choices expressing a preference or lack thereof regarding potential matches, was unknown and unconventional. 106. This interface improvement allows users to sift through more information, more quickly than previous interfaces addressing similar binary choice user decisions. These efficiencies to user interaction revolutionized the world of online dating. 29 21 107. That the inventions are directed toward new computer-specific user interface technology is confirmed by the surrounding limitations. The inventions claim a specific computer method, system, and computer-readable medium of matchmaking where parties are not permitted to communicate unless and until a match is made, user profiles are specifically "online-dating profiles" and those profiles must be "associated with a social networking platform," a type of platform that is itself computer specific. The claims further describe various actions of a graphical user interface that provide certain information at certain times in response to certain types of inputs. This is not conventional post-solution activity in order to monopolize an abstract idea of matchmaking or even mutual opt-in matchmaking. Instead, these limitations recite a particularly advantageous computer embodiment of a matchmaking process that also solves computer-specific problems related to the ease of creating fake accounts and profiles, the inconvenience of filling out profiles, and the problem of certain online dating users being inundated with messages. This particularly advantageous online matchmaking method may have been known prior to the inventions claimed. However, this method was not so pervasive as to be "conventional." 108. Moreover, even if that matchmaking method was conventional, the inventions are directed to an improved interface for that method. SECOND CAUSE OF ACTION: INFRINGEMENT OF THE '023 PATENT BY BUMBLE 109. Match incorporates by reference the preceding paragraphs as if fully set forth herein. 110. Bumble directly infringes the '023 Patent at least by making and using a system that practices the claims of Tinder's patent. 111. For example, independent claim 3 of the '023 Patent recites: 30 21 A system, comprising: an interface operable to: present a graphical representation of a first item of information of a plurality of items of information, the first item of information comprising a graphical representation of a first online dating profile associated with a first user, wherein the interface is further operable to present the graphical representation of the first item of information of the plurality of items of information as a first card of a stack of cards; a processor coupled to the interface and operable to: detect a gesture associated with the graphical representation of the first item of information, the gesture corresponding to a positive preference indication associated with the first item of information, the positive preference indication associated with the first item of information comprising an expression of approval for the first user associated with the first online dating profile, wherein the processor is further operable to detect a right swiping direction associated with the gesture; store the positive preference indication associated with the first item of information in response to detecting the gesture; and the interface further operable to: automatically present a graphical representation of a second item of information of the plurality of items of information in response to the processor detecting the gesture, the second item of information comprising a graphical representation of a second online dating profile associated with a second user; and automatically remove the graphical representation of the first item of information in response to detecting the gesture. 112. Bumble Holding, Ltd. is the listed distributing company for the Bumble app on the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store. Bumble Trading Inc. also markets and distributes the Bumble app. Thus, Bumble Holding, Ltd. and Bumble Trading Inc. are directly infringing the '811 Patent by making and/or using the Bumble system. 31 21 113. In at least one version of the Bumble app,3 a user device running the Bumble app comprises the claimed system. The Bumble app comprises an interface. When in operation, the app presents a graphical representation of a first item of information of a plurality of items of information, the first item of information comprising a graphical representation of a first online dating profile associated with a first user. Specifically, the app presents a graphical representation of a first online dating profile at least by showing a picture of a user associated with an online dating profile: 114. Bumble's interface is further operable to present the graphical representation of the first item of information (i.e., the graphical representation of the online dating profile) as a first card of a stack of cards. Specifically, Bumble's graphical interface presents dating profiles in a stacked, card-based format: 3 Bumble recently redesigned its user interface. The analysis contained in this claim relates to the prior version of the app. Differences have been addressed in the infringement contentions already served on Bumble. 32 21 115. User devices compatible with the Bumble app include processors. 116. When the Bumble app is downloaded and installed, those processors are operable to detect a gesture associated with the graphical representation of the first item of information, the gesture corresponding to a positive preference indication associated with the first item of information, the positive preference indication associated with the first item of information comprising an expression of approval for the first user associated with the first online dating profile. Specifically, when the Bumble app is operating on a device, it detects a gesture—a right swiping gesture—performed on the graphical representation of the online dating profile to indicate a positive preference for the user associated with that profile: 33 21 117. As shown above, the code comprising the Bumble app, when downloaded, installed, and operating on a user device renders the device's processor operable to detect a right swiping direction associated with the positive preference indication gesture. 118. The code comprising the Bumble app also renders the device's processor operable to store that positive preference indication associated with the first item of information in response to detecting the gesture. Specifically, after the app detects that a user has swiped right on the graphical representation of the dating profile, it stores data in memory indicating a positive preference before transmitting that data to Bumble's servers. 119. Bumble's app also comprises an interface that automatically presents a graphical representation of a second item of information of the plurality of items of information in response to the processor detecting the gesture, the second item of information comprising a graphical representation of a second online dating profile associated with a second user. In the Bumble app, in response to the processor detecting the positive indication gesture, the Bumble app automatically presents the entire graphical representation of a second online dating profile associated with a second user: 34 21 120. As shown above, the Bumble app also automatically removes the graphical representation of the first item of information in response to detecting the gesture. 121. Bumble also indirectly infringes the '023 Patent by inducing infringement by others, such as end-user customers, by, for example, encouraging and instructing end-user customers to install and use the Bumble app in the United States. 122. Bumble took the above actions intending to cause infringing acts by others. 123. If Bumble did not know that the actions it has encouraged and continues to encourage constitute infringement of the '023 Patent, Bumble nevertheless subjectively believes there was and is a high probability that others have and will infringe the '023 Patent but has taken and is taking deliberate steps to avoid confirming that it is actively inducing infringement by others. 124. Bumble also indirectly infringes the '023 Patent by contributing to infringement by others, such as end-users, by providing within the United States software components for operating Bumble's app. These software components are, for example, the Bumble app, and the download package that contains the Bumble app. Bumble's end-users directly infringed the '023 Patent by, for example, installing and using the Bumble app in the United States to use the Bumble system in the United States. These software components are known by Bumble to be especially made or adapted for use in Bumble's infringing system. 125. Bumble has known these components to be especially made or especially adapted for use in infringement of the '023 Patent and that these components are not a staple article or commodity of commerce suitable for substantial non-infringing use. Alternatively, Bumble subjectively believes there was and is a high probability that these components were especially made or especially adapted for use in an infringement of the '023 Patent and that these 35 21 components are not a staple article or commodity of commerce suitable for substantial non-infringing use but has taken and is taking deliberate steps to avoid confirming the same. 126. Bumble's infringement of the '023 Patent is and has been willful at least as of the filing of this complaint. At that point, Bumble at a minimum knew or had reason to know of certain facts which would lead a reasonable person to realize their actions were unreasonably risky with respect to infringement of the '023 Patent. Bumble has not attempted to avoid infringement of the patent or to design around it. And Bumble designed its app to mirror Tinder and its functionality specifically to compete with Tinder and avoid a barrier to entry in the market. 127. The inventions claimed in the '023 Patent are not directed to an abstract idea. Instead, the claims are directed to an improvement in computer and user interface functionality as well as in online social networking. 128. Specifically, the inventors of the continuation-in-part aspect of the '023 Patent set out to improve the user-interface functionality in online dating apps. Far from claiming the general concept of matchmaking or even mutual opt-in matchmaking on a computer or over the Internet, the '023 Patent recites a new, innovative interface design that reflects a non-conventional, concrete improvement in graphical interfaces for online dating. 129. For example, claim 3 recites multiple specific, concrete aspects related to an improved interface. The claim requires that the graphical representation of a dating profile be represented as the first card of a stack of cards, that the system be operable to detect a gesture corresponding to a positive preference indication of the dating profile, that the interface be operable to detect a right swiping direction associated with that positive preference gesture, that a graphical representation of a second online dating profile is automatically presented in 36 21 response to detecting the positive preference gesture, and that the graphical representation of the first data profile is automatically removed. 130. As with the '811 Patent, the requirements of this claim reflect a non-conventional, concrete improvement in how touch screen user interfaces interact with users sifting through and making binary choices. Even if the general gesture of swiping was known in the prior art, the specific application of the swiping gesture to indicate a preference on a card-based online dating interface was unknown and unconventional and provides specific, concrete improvements to the interface. 131. This interface improvement allows users to sift through more information, more quickly than previous interfaces addressing similar binary choice user decisions. These efficiencies to user interaction revolutionized the world of online dating. THIRD CAUSE OF ACTION: INFRINGEMENT OF THE ʼ854 PATENT BY BUMBLE 132. Match incorporates by reference the preceding paragraphs as if fully set forth herein. 133. Bumble directly infringes the ʼ854 Patent at least by making and using a system that practices the claims of Match's patent. 134. For example, independent claim 1 of the ʼ854 Patent recites: A non-transitory computer-readable medium comprising instructions that, when executed by a processor, are configured to: electronically receive a plurality of user online-dating profiles, each profile comprising traits of a respective user; electronically receive a first request for matching, the first request electronically submitted by a first user using a first electronic device; determine from the plurality of user online-dating profiles a set of potential matches for the first user; cause the display of a graphical representation of a first potential match of the set 37 21 of potential matches to the first user on a graphical user interface of the first electronic device, the first potential match corresponding to a second user; receive from the first electronic device of the first user a first positive preference indication associated with the graphical representation of the second user on the graphical user interface, the first positive preference indication associated with a first gesture performed on the graphical user interface, wherein the first gesture comprises a first swiping gesture; cause the graphical user interface to display a graphical representation of a second potential match of the set of potential matches instead of the graphical representation of the first potential match; receive from a second electronic device of the second user a positive preference indication regarding the first user; determine to allow the first user to communicate with the second user in response to receiving from the first electronic device of the first user the first positive preference indication regarding the second user and receiving from the second electronic device of the second user the positive preference indication regarding the first user; receive from the first electronic device of the first user a first negative preference indication associated with a graphical representation of a third potential match on the graphical user interface, the first negative preference indication associated with a second gesture performed on the graphical user interface, the third potential match corresponding to a third user, wherein the second gesture comprises a second swiping gesture different than the first swiping gesture; without allowing communication between the first user and the third user, receive from the first electronic device of the first user a second positive preference indication associated with a graphical representation of a fourth potential match on the graphical user interface, the second positive preference indication associated with the first gesture performed on the graphical user interface, the fourth potential match corresponding to a fourth user; receive from a third electronic device of the fourth user a second negative preference indication associated with a graphical representation of the first user; and without allowing communication between the first user and the fourth user, receive from the first electronic device of the first user a third positive preference indication associated with a graphical representation of a fifth potential match on the graphical user interface, the third positive preference indication associated with the first gesture performed on the graphical user interface, the fifth potential match corresponding to a fifth user. 38 21 135. Bumble Holding, Ltd. is the listed distributing company for the Bumble app on the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store. Bumble Trading Inc. also markets and distributes the Bumble app. Thus, Bumble Holding, Ltd. and Bumble Trading Inc. are directly infringing the '811 Patent by making and/or using the Bumble system. 136. In at least one version of the Bumble app,4 Bumble directly infringes the ʼ854 Patent at least by making and using a system that practices the claims of Match's patent. Bumble's servers practice all of the limitations of these claims, as set forth in the example below. For example, one or more non-transitory computer-readable media reside on Bumble's servers that contain instructions that, when executed by one or more processors, are configured to perform the operations recited in the claim. 137. Through the account-setup process, Bumble receives from each user an online profile comprising traits of respective users. For example, the Frequently Asked Questions on Bumble's website indicates that Bumble "use[s] Facebook to help build your profile by importing your name, age, school, and/or occupation." 138. Bumble's servers are configured to electronically receive a first request for matching, the first request electronically submitted by a first user using a first electronic device. For example, after authorizing his or her account (via Facebook or via phone number authentication), the Bumble user is taken to the screen where he or she can indicate positive and negative preferences for various potential matches. At a point before those potential matches are shown, Bumble has received a request for matching. 4 Because the Bumble app was modified prior to the issuance of the '854 Patent, these allegations relate to the current version of the Bumble app. 39 21 139. Bumble's servers are configured to determine from the plurality of user online-dating profiles a set of potential matches for the first user. For example, in response to receiving the parameters set forth in the request for matching contained in the Bumble app user request, Bumble determines a set of potential matches for the requesting user based on parameters such as location, age, and gender. 40 21 140. Bumble's servers are configured to cause the display of a graphical representation of a first potential match of the set of potential matches to the first user on a graphical user interface of the first electronic device, the first potential match corresponding to a second user. For example, Bumble causes the display of potential matches of other bumble app users to appear on the first Bumble app user's graphical user interface. 41 21 141. Bumble's servers are configured to receive from the first electronic device of the first user a first positive preference indication associated with the graphical representation of the second user on the graphical user interface, the first positive preference indication associated with a first gesture performed on the graphical user interface, wherein the first gesture comprises a first swiping gesture. For example, a Bumble app user may affirmatively select (or reject) another Bumble app user by using "swiping" gestures (i.e., sliding the potential match left or right). 42 21 142. Bumble's servers are configured to cause the graphical user interface to display a graphical representation of a second potential match of the set of potential matches instead of the graphical representation of the first potential match. For example, after the first user expressed the positive indication regarding the first potential match, Bumble displays a second potential match from the set of potential matches. 143. Bumble's servers are configured to receive from a second electronic device of the 43 21 second user a positive preference indication regarding the first user. Bumble compares the selected preference of each potential match (i.e., of a first Bumble app user and a second Bumble app user), including making a determination whether the first Bumble app user and the second Bumble app user each expressed a positive preference for each other. In this example, both users "Olivia" and "Brandon" have expressed a positive preference for each other. Bumble's Accused Instrumentalities determines that this occurs and indicates it to the users via the "BOOM! It's a match!" screen. 144. Bumble's servers determine to allow the first user to communicate with the second user in response to receiving from the first electronic device of the first user the first positive preference indication regarding the second user and receiving from the second electronic device of the second user the positive preference indication regarding the first user. In the event 44 21 that there is a mutual positive preference indication between the first user and the second user, Bumble determines to allow the first user to communicate with the second user in response to receiving from the first electronic device of the first user the first positive preference indication regarding the second user and receiving from the second electronic device of the second user the positive preference indication regarding the first user. In the opposite-gender case, Bumble determines to allow the communication by allowing the female user to message the male user. The phone on the right, in this example, corresponding to user "Olivia" is allowed to communicate with the user Brandon. The phone on the left, in this example, corresponding to the user "Brandon," is also allowed to communicate with the user "Olivia" as long as "Olivia" messages first. 145. Bumble's servers are configured to receive from the first electronic device of the 45 21 first user a first negative preference indication associated with a graphical representation of a third potential match on the graphical user interface, the first negative preference indication associated with a second gesture performed on the graphical user interface, the third potential match corresponding to a third user, wherein the second gesture comprises a second swiping gesture different than the first swiping gesture. For example, Bumble receives from the first electronic device of the first user a first negative preference indication when the first user performs a "swiping" gesture in the left direction. 146. Bumble's servers are configured to, without allowing communication between the first user and the third user, receive from the first electronic device of the first user a second positive preference indication associated with the first gesture performed on the graphical user interface, the fourth potential match corresponding to a fourth user. For example, if the first Bumble app user expressed a negative preference for a third Bumble app user, Bumble's Accused Instrumentalities do not allow the first and third Bumble app users to communicate through the app. After indicating a negative preference on a user, a Bumble user can continue to indicate preferences on additional users by use of "swiping" gestures. When a user indicates another positive preference by a "swiping" in the right direction, Bumble receives from the first electronic device that second positive preference indication, which is associated with a graphical 46 21 representation of a fourth potential match corresponding to a fourth user. For example, the earlier example used with Olivia and Brandon could involve additional users, such as "Eric," and would operate in the same manner. The positive preference again is a "swipe" gesture in the same direction as the previously identified positive preference. 147. Bumble's servers are configured to receive from a third electronic device of the fourth user a second negative preference indication associated with a graphical representation of the first user. For example, a Bumble user may affirmatively reject another Bumble app user by swiping gestures. Bumble receives these user indications (i.e., sliding the potential match left or tapping the X button). 148. Bumble's servers are configured to, without allowing communication between the first user and the fourth user, receive from the first electronic device of the first user a third positive preference indication associated with a graphical representation of a fifth potential match on the graphical user interface, the third positive preference indication associated with the first gesture performed on the graphical user interface, the fifth potential match corresponding to a fifth user. For example, after a first user has another user express a negative preference for the first user, the user can continue to indicate preferences on additional users by use of "swiping" gestures. 47 21 149. Bumble also indirectly infringes the '854 Patent by inducing infringement by others, such as end-user customers, by, for example, encouraging and instructing end-user customers to install and use the Bumble app in the United States. 150. Bumble took the above actions intending to cause infringing acts by others. 151. If Bumble did not know that the actions it has encouraged and continues to encourage constitute infringement of the '854 Patent, Bumble nevertheless subjectively believes there was and is a high probability that others have and will infringe the '854 Patent but has taken and is taking deliberate steps to avoid confirming that it is actively inducing infringement by others. 152. Bumble also indirectly infringes the '854 Patent by contributing to infringement by others, such as end-users, by providing within the United States software components for operating Bumble's app. These software components are, for example, the Bumble app, and the download package that contains the Bumble app. Bumble's end-users directly infringed the '854 Patent by, for example, installing and using the Bumble app in the United States to use the Bumble system in the United States. These software components are known by Bumble to be especially made or adapted for use in Bumble's infringing system. 153. Bumble has known these components to be especially made or especially adapted for use in infringement of the '854 Patent and that these components are not a staple article or commodity of commerce suitable for substantial non-infringing use. Alternatively, Bumble subjectively believes there was and is a high probability that these components were especially made or especially adapted for use in an infringement of the '854 Patent and that these components are not a staple article or commodity of commerce suitable for substantial non-infringing use but has taken and is taking deliberate steps to avoid confirming the same. 48 21 154. Bumble's infringement of the '854 Patent is and has been willful at least as of the filing of this complaint. At that point, Bumble at a minimum knew or had reason to know of certain facts which would lead a reasonable person to realize their actions were unreasonably risky with respect to infringement of the '854 Patent. Bumble has not attempted to avoid infringement of the patent or to design around it. And Bumble designed its app to mirror Tinder and its functionality specifically to compete with Tinder and avoid a barrier to entry in the market. 155. The inventions claimed in the '854 Patent are not directed to an abstract idea. Instead, the claims are directed to an improvement in computer and user interface functionality as well as in online social networking. 156. Specifically, the inventors of the continuation-in-part aspect of the '854 Patent set out to improve the functionality in online dating apps. Far from claiming the general concept of matchmaking or even mutual opt-in matchmaking on a computer or over the Internet, the '854 Patent recites a new, innovative configuration that reflects a non-conventional, concrete improvement in process related to online dating. 157. For example, claim 1 recites multiple specific, concrete aspects related to an improved configuration. The claim requires that online profiles be tied to traits of respective users, that sets of potential matches be presented to the users, that the system is operable to detect a gesture corresponding to a positive and negative preference indications regarding the dating profile dependent upon different swiping gestures, that the system determines that communications are allowed between two users who have indicated a positive preference for each other, that the system does not allow communications where at least one user has indicated a negative preference, and that the users are presented with multiple additional potential matches 49 21 following each preference indication. 158. As with the '811 and ʼ023 Patents, the requirements of this claim reflect a non-conventional, concrete improvement in how touch screen user interfaces interact with users sifting through and making binary choices. The specific directional dragging-gesture on a graphical representation of a user to denote positive, and of a dragging gesture in a different direction on the graphical representation to denote negative, in connection with a mutual opt-in matchmaking app, was a non-conventional, concrete improvement in how touch screen user interfaces interact with users sifting through and making binary choices, such as indicating positive or negative preferences related to potential matches. As with the '811 and '023 patents, although the general gesture of "swiping" may have been known in the prior art, the specific application to a graphical representation of a user in the specific matchmaking context claimed, in order to make binary choices expressing a preference or lack thereof regarding potential matches, was unknown and unconventional. 159. This interface improvement allows users to sift through more information, more quickly than previous interfaces addressing similar binary choice user decisions. These efficiencies to user interaction revolutionized the world of online dating. Scroll-based interfaces were prevalent and ubiquitous in the online dating world at the time of the inventions claimed in the '854 Patent. 160. Although these interfaces were generally fine for their intended purposes, they suffered from drawbacks. 161. For example, many users feel like scrolling can be difficult, particularly when scrolling on devices with small screens. 50 21 162. Additionally, scroll-based systems tend to hinder the ability to show large photographs. In the dating context, many users believe that viewing photographs of potential matches is one of the most significant aspects of making preference decisions. 163. The innovations claimed in the CIP aspects of the '854 patent solve these problems by providing an improved, non-scroll-based interface thereby fostering more binary choice decisions and increased user engagement with the application. 164. The innovations do this by describing the one-at-time, dragging-gesture based interface claimed in the '854 Patent. 165. By requiring profiles to be viewed one-at-a-time, the interface precludes users from deferring preference choices, which enables the system to obtain additional preferences concerning users than it might otherwise. 166. Further, by allowing preference indications to be received by virtue of a dragging-gesture known in the patent as a "swipe," the interface minimizes user movement, thus also fostering user engagement and more potential matches to be made. 167. In the wake of Tinder's release, multiple third-party publications lauded Tinder's innovative card-based format. 168. For example, a public project published in connection with a class at Davidson College describes Tinder's card-based interface as "[t]he most important and innovating [sic] aspect of the design of Tinder." It further contrasts the interface as "an alternative to the traditional scrolling interface" and describes various advantages of the Tinder interface to scroll- based interfaces. For example, it describes that "Tinder requires extremely little movement from its user in order to function" and that it "require[s] far less effort than other interfaces, which makes it more appealing to its users," which is particularly advantageous "[i]n a culture where 51 21 speed and ease are paramount." The article goes on to describe Bumble as "almost identical" to Tinder and recognized that "[t]he fact that Bumble is almost identical to Tinder displays the genius of Tinder's concept and design." See Ex. E. 169. In another 2015 article from growthhackers.com, the author praised Tinder's "novel user experience," and "novel interface and interaction design." The author acknowledged that "the way Tinder is built has everything to do with how it caught fire." It describes "the big difference between Tinder and other mobile apps is how you navigate through potential matches. Matches are presented like a virtual deck of cards that the user 'swipes' through," noting that the interface makes it "easy to do with one hand, making it perfect for moving quickly" while also providing "more screen real estate. . . for large pictures and more information," which "isn't feasible in a list format or on a small screen with lots of navigation options." See Ex. F. 170. In a 2017 article from innovationiseverywhere.com, describing Tinder's rise to success, Tinder's user interface was described as what "was different" from competitor applications at the time. The article further describes that "Tinder's UI simplified the selection process of finding potential suitors to a binary option. . . . Unlike other dating apps that require the user to plough through cumbersome lists, Tinder required only an input that registered as a 'Yes' or 'No' from the user." See Ex. G. FOURTH CAUSE OF ACTION: TRADEMARK INFRINGEMENT UNDER 15 U.S.C. § 1114(a) 171. Match incorporates by reference the preceding paragraphs as if fully set forth herein. 172. Match has received a federal registration for the mark SWIPE in connection with computer application software for mobile devices—software for social introduction and dating services. 173. Match, through Tinder, first used the mark SWIPE in commerce on or around 52 21 March 28, 2013 and continues to do so. 174. Bumble, by using Match's SWIPE mark to compete with Tinder in the market for software for social introduction and dating services," violated 15 U.S.C. § 1114. As discussed above, Bumble is prominently using Match's SWIPE mark throughout its app and promotional activities. Bumble's activities are causing, and, unless enjoined, will continue to cause, a likelihood of confusion and deception of members of the public, and, additionally, injury to Match and Tinder's reputation and goodwill as reflected in the SWIPE mark. Bumble's use of the SWIPE mark will also actually deceive the public or is at least likely to deceive the public regarding the source, sponsorship, and/or affiliation of Bumble's app. 175. These actions have also materially damaged the value of Match's registered SWIPE mark. 176. As a proximate result of Bumble's actions, Match has suffered damages, including, but not limited to, lost revenue and loss of goodwill associated with its Tinder app. 177. At least because of the prior affiliation of Bumble officers with Tinder and because of Bumble's competition with Tinder, Bumble's actions also demonstrate an intentional, willful, and malicious intent to trade on goodwill associated with Match and Tinder's SWIPE mark. FIFTH CAUSE OF ACTION: TRADEMARK INFRINGEMENT UNDER 15 U.S.C. § 1125(a) 178. Match incorporates by reference the preceding paragraphs as if fully set forth herein. 179. Match is the owner of word marks SWIPE LEFT and SWIPE RIGHT in connection with internet-based dating and matchmaking and similar services since at least on around March 28, 2013. Match has used and continues to use these marks throughout the United States. 53 21 180. These marks are valid and enforceable and in full force and effort. 181. As described above, Bumble uses Match's SWIPE LEFT and SWIPE RIGHT marks prominently. Bumble's doing so is likely to cause confusion or mistake or deceive the public as to the origin, sponsorship, or approval of the Bumble app. 182. At least because of the prior affiliation of Bumble officers with Tinder and because of Bumble's competition with Tinder, Bumble's actions also demonstrate an intentional, willful, and malicious intent to trade on goodwill associated with the SWIPE RIGHT and SWIPE RIGHT word marks. 183. These actions have caused damages to Match, including lost Tinder revenue as well as damages to Tinder's brand and associated goodwill. SIXTH CAUSE OF ACTION: INFRINGEMENT OF TRADE DRESS UNDER 15 U.S.C. § 1125(a) 184. Match incorporates by reference the preceding paragraphs as if fully set forth herein. 185. Match is also the owner of legally protectable trade dress. For example, the non-functional, design and appearance of Tinder's card stack, namely the appearance of a profile picture as a card on top of a stack of profile pictures being dragged at an angle off a screen, is either inherently distinctive or has acquired secondary meaning designating Match and Tinder as the source of the product. 186. Match has protectable trade dress in the non-functional, ornamental design of cards showing photographs tilted both left and right, as shown below: 54 21 187. This is because the visual impression of the Tinder app is of cards being dragged off the screen in the exact same way. 188. As described above, the appearance of this interface has been described as "famous" or "iconic" by multiple third-party publications. 189. This interface was first used in commerce some time before September 1, 2012. 190. By including this same non-functional ornamental design, Bumble's app is likely to cause confusion or mistake or deceive the public as to the origin, sponsorship, or approval of 55 21 the Bumble app. 191. Match is also the owner of trade dress related to Tinder's "It's a Match!" screen, shown here: 192. The Tinder app has included this same or similar design since it was initially released. 193. The "It's a Match Screen!" was first used in commerce on August 2, 2012. 194. As described above, Tinder uses this screen in various advertising materials, including on the App Store, Google Play Store, and on YouTube. 195. This overall design is non-functional. 196. By including this same non-functional design, Bumble's app is likely to cause confusion or mistake or deceive the public as to the origin, sponsorship, or approval of the Bumble app. 197. As also discussed above, Bumble's similar screen is virtually identical to Tinder's. 198. By including this same non-functional design, Bumble's app is likely to cause 56 21 confusion or mistake or deceive the public as to the origin, sponsorship, or approval of the Bumble app. 199. At least because of the prior affiliation of Bumble officers with Tinder and because of Bumble's competition with Tinder, Bumble's actions also demonstrate an intentional, willful, and malicious intent to trade on goodwill associated with Match's trade dress. 200. These actions have caused damages to Match in the form of lost Tinder revenue as well as damages to Tinder's brand and associated goodwill. SEVENTH CAUSE OF ACTION: TRADEMARK DILUTION 201. Match incorporates by reference the preceding paragraphs as if fully set forth herein. 202. Certain of Bumble's actions also constitute trademark and trade dress dilution by blurring under 15 U.S.C. § 1125(c). 203. Match's wordmark SWIPE RIGHT is famous to the general public. 204. As discussed above, the phrase "swipe right" is included in the Oxford English Dictionary, specifically associated with the Tinder app. 205. "Swipe right," especially in the connection with "swipe left," is often described by third parties as a famous "cultural phenomenon." 206. These third parties describe the cultural phenomenon specifically in reference to Tinder and the Tinder app. 207. In light of Tinder's own extensive marketing as well as the descriptions of third- parties, SWIPE RIGHT has become effectively a "household name" identifying the Tinder brand and Tinder app. 208. After Tinder's SWIPE RIGHT mark became famous, Bumble began using SWIPE RIGHT in connection with its app. Bumble's routine use of the mark SWIPE RIGHT in 57 21 connection with a direct competitor mobile dating service has caused and is likely to cause dilution by blurring, diluting the distinctiveness of SWIPE RIGHT as a brand signifier for Tinder and/or Match. 209. These actions have harmed the reputation of goodwill associated with Tinder. 210. Bumble's dilution of Tinder's SWIPE RIGHT mark has been willful and intentional. EIGHTH CAUSE OF ACTION: TEXAS UNFAIR COMPETITION. 211. Match incorporates by reference the preceding paragraphs as if fully set forth herein. 212. As discussed above, Match's trademarks and trade dress are valid marks in full force and effect. 213. Bumble knowingly and willfully used these marks and this trade dress in commerce through the promotion of its app and in the app itself. 214. Bumble's actions are likely to cause consumer confusion, cause consumer mistake, and/or deceive ordinarily prudent consumers as to the affiliation, connection, association, sponsorship, or approval of Match and/or Tinder products because Bumble's actions suggest that its own app originates form, is sponsored by, is authorized by, or is otherwise connected with Tinder and/or Match. 215. These actions have materially damaged the value of Match's Tinder marks and trade dress. 216. As a result, Match has suffered damages, including lost Tinder revenue and damage to goodwill associated with Tinder. 217. Bumble's actions have caused injury to Match, and Match is entitled to damages caused thereby, including punitive damages as a result of Bumble's malicious and willful 58 21 actions. NINTH CAUSE OF ACTION: MISAPPROPRIATION OF TRADE SECRETS UNDER THE DEFEND TRADE SECRETS ACT AND THE TEXAS UNIFORM TRADE SECRETS ACT 218. Match incorporates by reference the preceding paragraphs as if fully set forth herein. 219. In connection with their employment at Hatch Labs/Tinder/Match, at least Chris Gulczynski and Sarah Mick were given access to certain confidential information related to proposed Tinder features. 220. Gulczynski and Mick agreed as part of their employment to keep confidential all confidential information and to not disclose such information to anyone or to use such information for anyone's benefit other than Hatch Labs/Tinder/Match. 221. While at Tinder, Gulcynski and Mick were involved in development for a potential "undo" function for the Tinder app. 222. The concept of the "undo," as discussed internally at Tinder, involved allowing all users three "undos." Once an "undo" was used, it would take a certain period of time for that "undo" to replenish. If the user did not want to wait that time period for the undo to replenish, the user could speed up the process by promoting that app via social media. 223. For example, the image below reflects an internal Tinder mock-up of the "undo" idea in which Gulcynski and Mick were involved: 59 21 224. In March of 2015, Bumble implemented a nearly, if not literally, identical concept in its "Backtrack" feature. In Bumble's own words on its website: 225. To be sure, Tinder had previously announced its "rewind" functionality before Bumble released its rewind feature. But Tinder's "rewind" feature was different and remains different from this confidential concept misappropriated from Gulcyzsnki and Mick's time at Tinder. 226. Tinder's rewind allows for "Tinder Plus" users to "rewind" errant left "swipes" in connection with a paid subscription. 227. Bumble's backtrack feature, in contrast, plainly mirrors the three "undos" that replenish over time and/or with promoting the app on social media outlets. 228. At least because of their confidentiality agreements, Gulczysnki and/or Mick knew or had reason to know at the time they began using these concepts that they were acquired 60 21 by improper means or under circumstances giving rise to a duty to maintain the secrecy of or limit the use of the secret. 229. Additionally, because Gulczysnki and Mick were co-founders and executives at Bumble, Bumble used this trade secret knowing or with reason to know that the secret was acquired by improper means, acquired under circumstances giving rise to a duty to maintain the secrecy of the trade secret, or was derived from a person (Gulczynski and/or Mick) who owed a duty to Match and Tinder to maintain the secrecy of the idea. 230. Bumble's app, which uses this trade secret, is used in interstate commerce. 231. In light of the totality of the circumstances between Match/Tinder and Bumble, this misappropriation was willful and malicious misappropriation, made with conscious disregard of the rights of Match and Tinder in the trade secret. 232. Indeed, Bumble's misappropriation related to "backtrack" appears to reflect a pattern of disregard for Match's trade secret rights. 233. While Gulczynski and Mick were still at Tinder, Sean Rad came up with an idea to implement picture messaging within the Tinder app. 234. Although dating apps had been reluctant to include a direct picture messaging function because of concerns related to unsolicited lewd photographs, Rad conceived the idea of allowing direct photograph messaging but sending only a deliberately blurred photo that the photo recipient would be required to click before viewing an unblurred image. In this way, anyone looking over your shoulder could not see the message unless the recipient clicked it. Further, the user recipient could, based on context, determine whether the sent picture was one the recipient was comfortable viewing in public (or ever). 235. After Rad conceived of the idea, he asked Gulczynski to perform a mock-up of 61 21 the concept. Below is a PDF screenshot of Gulczynski's design mock-up at Tinder: 236. The two icons with the hands over them would, once clicked, display the full photo. 237. In February 2015, after Gulczynski and Mick left Tinder to work at Bumble, Bumble implemented the identical concept, complete with same white hand surrounded by a white circle over the blurred image: 62 21 238. When Bumble released the feature, Bumble indicated that it was implementing a "Snapchat-like" feature, implying that Bumble was co-opting a feature from Snapchat. 239. The truth is that Gulczynski and/or Mick took the idea from confidential development discussions at Tinder. 240. These co-founders of Bumble that previously worked with Tinder have inappropriately used confidential information related to Bumble's backtrack function. 241. It is currently unknown and unknowable to Match whether Bumble is using any algorithms or source code acquired at Tinder from Gulczysnki, Mick, and/or Wolfe-Herd's time at Tinder. It is also unknown and unknowable to Match whether Bumble acquired or is using other confidential information acquired from Gulczysnki, Mick, and/or Wolfe-Herd's time at Tinder. 242. Bumble's use of the backtrack/undo trade secret constitutes a misappropriation of trade secrets in violation of the Defend Trade Secrets Act and the Texas Uniform Trade Secrets Act. 243. Bumble's misappropriation of the "undo" trade secret has caused damage to Match. It has been forced to compete for users and revenue against a competitor implementing Match's own confidential idea, developed at Match, for Match, by personnel being paid by Match. PRAYER FOR RELIEF WHEREFORE, Plaintiff prays for the entry of a judgment from this Court: 1. Judgment in Plaintiff's favor and against Defendants on all causes of action alleged herein; 63 21 2. A preliminary and/or permanent injunction restraining Defendants, and their agents, servants, employees, attorneys, successors and assigns, and all persons, firms, and corporations acting in concert with them, from directly or indirectly violating Match Group LLC's patent rights, its rights under the Lanham Act, its rights arising from common law unfair competition, and from any further misappropriation or unauthorized use of Match/Tinder's trade secrets. 3. For damages in an amount to be further proven at trial, including: a. Damages assessed against Defendants pursuant to the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016, including compensatory damages, unjust enrichment or restitution damages, reasonably royalty, and exemplary damages; b. Damages assessed against Defendants pursuant to the Texas Uniform Trade Secret Act, including compensatory damages, unjust enrichment or restitution damages, reasonably royalty, and exemplary damages; c. Damages assessed against Defendants pursuant to the Lanham Act, including compensatory damages, statutory damages, treble damages, restitution, including disgorgement of profits, d. Damages under 35 U.S.C. § 284, including enhancement and including supplemental damages for any continuing post-verdict infringement up until entry of final judgment, with an accounting, as needed; e. Damages for Defendants' common law unfair competition, including punitive damages 4. For Plaintiff's reasonable attorney's fees; 5. For costs of suit incurred herein, including all disbursements; 64 21 6. For pre-judgment and post-judgment interest on the damages awarded; 7. If an injunction is not granted, that Plaintiff be awarded an ongoing licensing fee; and 8. For such other and further relief (including any and all equitable relief) as the Court may deem to be just and proper. DEMAND FOR JURY TRIAL Pursuant to Rule 38 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Plaintiff demands a trial by jury on all issues triable of right by a jury. 65 21 DATED: March 14, 2019 Respectfully submitted, CALDWELL CASSADY & CURRY /s/ Bradley W. Caldwell Bradley W. Caldwell Texas State Bar No. 24040630 Email: bcaldwell@caldwellcc.com John F. Summers Texas State Bar No. 24079417 Email: jsummers@caldwellcc.com Warren J. McCarty, III Illinois State Bar No. 6313452 Email: wmccarty@caldwellcc.com CALDWELL CASSADY CURRY P.C. 2101 Cedar Springs Road, Suite 1000 Dallas, Texas 75201 Telephone: (214) 888-4848 Facsimile: (214) 888-4849 John P. Palmer State Bar. 15430600 Email: palmer@namanhowell.com Naman, Howell, Smith & Lee, PLLC 400 Austin Avenue, 8th Floor P.O. Box 1470 Waco, TX 76701 Telephone: (254) 755-4100 Facsimile: (254) 754-6331 ATTORNEYS FOR PLAINTIFF MATCH GROUP, LLC CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE The undersigned certifies that the foregoing document was filed electronically with the Clerk of Court using the CM/ECF system which will send notification of such filing to all counsel registered as Filing Users on this 14th day of March, 2019. /s/ Bradley W. Caldwell Bradley W. Caldwell 66 21 Exhibit A 21 Illlll llllllll Ill lllll lllll lllll lllll lllll 111111111111111111111111111111111 US009733811B2 c12) United States Patent (IO) Patent No.: US 9,733,811 B2 Rad et al. (45) Date of Patent: Aug. 15, 2017 (54) MATCHING PROCESS SYSTEM AND (2013.01); G06Q 10110 (2013.01); G06Q METHOD 30102 (2013.01); G06Q 50101 (2013.01); G06Q 50110 (2013.01) (71) Applicant: TINDER, INC., West Hollywood, CA (58) Field of Classification Search (US) CPC ........... G06F 17/30867; G06F 17/3053; G06F 17/30386 (72) Inventors: Sean Rad, Los Angeles, CA (US); See application file for complete search history. Todd M. Carrico, Melissa, TX (US); Kenneth B. Hoskins, Plano, TX (US); (56) References Cited James C. Stone, Addison, TX (US); Jonathan Badeen, North Hollywood, U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS CA (US) 6,480,885 Bl 11/2002 Olivier 7,917,448 B2 3/2011 Smola et al. (73) Assignee: Tinder, Inc., West Hollywood, CA (US) 8,060,463 Bl 11/2011 Spiegel 8,180,804 Bl* 5/2012 Narayanan et al. .......... 707/798 (*) Notice: Subject to any disclaimer, the term ofthis 8,566,327 B2 * 10/2013 Carrico ............. G06F 17/30657 patent is extended or adjusted under 35 705/319 U.S.C. 154(b) by 121 days. 2005/0021750 Al 1/2005 Abrams 2005/0027707 Al* 212005 Syed ...................... G06Q 30/02 7071999 .009 (21) Appl. No.: 14/059,192 2006/0059147 Al 3/2006 Weiss et al. (Continued) (22) Filed: Oct. 21, 2013 (65) Prior Publication Data OTHER PUBLICATIONS US 2014/0074824 Al Mar. 13, 2014 USPTO, Non-final Office Action dated Aug. 25, 2011 for U.S. Appl. No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, Related U.S. Application Data 14 pages. (63) Continuation-in-part of application No. 12/339,301, (Continued) filed on Dec. 19, 2008, now Pat. No. 8,566,327. (Continued) Primary Examiner - Yuk Ting Choi (74) Attorney, Agent, or Firm - Baker Botts L.L.P. (51) Int. Cl. G06F 17130 (2006.01) (57) ABSTRACT G06F 310484 (2013.01) A method for profile matching includes receiving a plurality G06Q 10110 (2012.01) of user profiles, each user profile comprising traits of a G06Q 30102 (2012.01) respective user. The method includes receiving a preference G06Q 50110 (2012.01) indication for a first user profile of the plurality of user G06Q 50100 (2012.01) profiles. The method also includes determining a potential G06F 310482 (2013.01) match user profile of the plurality of user profiles based on G06F 310488 (2013.01) the preference indication for the first user profile. The (52) U.S. Cl. method also includes presenting the potential match user CPC ........ G06F 3104842 (2013.01); G06F 310482 profile to a second user. (2013.01); G06F 310488 (2013.01); G06F 17130554 (2013.01); G06F 17130657 9 Claims, 11 Drawing Sheets •. ··10 88 21 US 9, 733,811 B2 Page 2 Related U.S. Application Data USPTO, Final Office Action dated Jan. 6, 2012 for U.S. Appl. No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, 15 (60) Provisional application No. 61/793,866, filed on Mar. pages. 15, 2013. Request for Continued Examination Transmittal and Amendment Filed with Request for Continued Examination filed May 7, 2012 (56) References Cited for U.S. Appl. No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, 17 pages. U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS USPTO, Non-final Office Action dated Oct. 2, 2012 for U.S. Appl. No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, 2006/0085419 Al 412006 Rosen 10 pages. 200610106780 Al 512006 Dagan Response to Office Action Pursuant to 37 C.F.R. § 1.111 filed Dec. 2007/0073687 Al 3/2007 Terrill et al. 2007/0073803 Al 3/2007 Terrill et al. 31, 2012 for U.S. Appl. No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the 2008/0196094 Al* 8/2008 Benschop G06Q 20/10 name of Todd M. Carrico, 13 pages. 726/5 USPTO, Final Office Action dated Mar. 7, 2013 for U.S. Appl. No. 2008/0294624 Al 1112008 Kanigsberg et al. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, 12 2008/0301118 Al 12/2008 Chien et al. pages. 200910106040 Al 412009 Jones Response to Office Action Pursuant to 37 C.F.R. § 1.116 and 2010/0125632 Al* 5/2010 Leonard. G06Q 10/10 Certification and Request for Consideration Under the After Final 709/204 Consideration Pilot Program 2.0 filed Jun. 6, 2013 for U.S. Appl. 2011/0087974 Al* 4/2011 Kulas ............................ 715/760 No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, 2011/0196927 Al* 8/2011 Vance ........................... 709/204 14 pages. 2012/0088524 Al* 412012 Moldavsky. G06Q 30/02 USPTO, Notice of Allowance and Fees Due dated Jun. 19, 2013 for 455/456.3 U.S. Appl. No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd 2014/0040368 Al* 2/2014 Janssens ....................... 709/204 M. Carrico, 12 pages. 2014/0074824 Al* 3/2014 Rad. G06Q 50/01 PCT Notification of Transmittal of the International Search Report 707/722 and the Written Opinion of the International Searching Authority, or the Declaration with attached PCT International Search Report and OTHER PUBLICATIONS Written Opinion of the International Searching Authority in Inter- national Application No. PCT/US08/87706, dated Feb. 10, 2009, 8 Response to Office Action Pursuant to 37 C.F.R. § 1.111 filed Nov. pages. 23, 2011 for U.S. Appl. No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, 12 pages. * cited by examiner 21 U.S. Patent Aug. 15, 2017 Sheet 1 of 11 US 9,733,811 B2 100 MATCHING srnvrn 20 0 0 20 ·-···--··········---···-----------~------l:::____________________________ 10 .................-"'......................................................... ... ..............."'"'•"••···.··-.--.---··•"''•·····....... ...... -------- ''6'"" Ptrn···'+J",...-·--£. 1-T:J+ d tl"' "1""1": [. c.ru"J"-· 28 " 0 0 _ft>f(J. JB FIG. JC 21 U.S. Patent Aug. 15, 2017 Sheet 2of11 US 9,733,811 B2 c FIG. JD ·-----------------------------·····----·--···--------------------------.---.·--···········-- SEARCH RESULTS i-------~----------------------·····················--------~--------------------.------------------------ 11. Jane ooe/31a [·;;;;;;~:r33 31)1 2. Jane Roef 31 b r~;;lr 33 il(~)l--·"'34 I.• 3 Jane Boe'- 31 c 0 0 [VE;;:J. 33 !L::CJ 0 fi'JG. JE ··················---·~- /;.:::::r:;,--\ (/l:~~J.t..~:. \ \,Jane Doe l ! ~-<'~ i <~") t \;' 1 ·\ .. i 11 /' .- I·it.,.,_;; 'I\. !\w«----.-.-.-.-----=:--·---"-·:·--.-.-' Contact l.....·-- ·35 '" \ \ ..,_,- . I i) .,,,,... i \ y,,~:;::·1 i / / i .,,...,..~,,..,----(/\'\\\fl---,~-- . \ !.· l l k' \' L. .t ..~:vS01 _ _ _. . .J \i Bom: i O/Oi /75 Hometown: Dallas, TX Likes: Cl1oco!ate, ro!lerblatHng Dislikes: Body odor. arrogance, football FIG. JF 21 U.S. Patent Aug. 15, 2017 Sheet 3of11 US 9,733,811 B2. ._________,.,._,. """"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""m•~~---•-••••--••••• SEARCH RESULTS "'"'"'""""""..._..._..._.._.._..._..._ •••••••••••••••••••••• nHu"'"'~~........_....,...._..,._.,.,.,.,"'""''" ......_..._..._..._..._ ••• f Jane Doe 12a -,,: '"'-! 31 I ~lane Boe ! _Jane Loe Hl\RRY'S SE.A.RCH RESULTS I I FIG. 2 [ .lane Doe l 31 ~Ii_. Jane Boe I Jane Loe I l i2 '-.,,, ----·----···-···----~------------:L.--------------------·------·--m·--------------------------------------------------- ~< ~~ le~--------- 113 /:;::.:}~ /[tfikt~)\ L~;:i~~~~~~:~~;~I CN~~~~~~, r·-----m·:;. r1anci1;:---;~m-------1 [r_T~~:t~~?~~:?,;;";;~;n;r: Ir· 1\if~\f~> '§:Y~iii~?!J '9\'&~li'f0Wfu~1Z~:t?Li!;.;3 ..:' \' ~ \ Physical Compatlbillty: High 11 P1G. 3,."'"..L ..\li:~L........ J. 1 intellectual Compatibility: High Age --~~-'.~-~~--S'..~~pt1Hbi Iity:_..r::~-~~-:::_~-~~-IY.._~i-~-~-------------m---------- Gend~;/~g~o;••k;:,. l·~::?:~~~~;~;~!·~,~~:~~:ic,·~;~~~E,~::i '-- I and mentioned ''Play-doh'' in your proiiles. !\.------------------------------------------------ lu'>.">_ _ .,.,.,°""""""'""""'""""""""""•.•.•••••••••••••••··•••••••••»•,...,.....,..... _ _._• .,..._.,'""""""""""""·""•••••• 21 U.S. Patent Aug. 15, 2017 Sheet 4of11 US 9,733,811 B2 20 50 30 52) tJ [~] FIG. 4 21 U.S. Patent Aug. 15, 2017 Sheet 5 of 11 US 9,733,811 B2. . .-~10;,.•' c:::::::::) .........---·10 tinder [ / .. 88 (iZ) (-i~) (~?) ................... ...................,.,,....,...... ............................................................... " ................................ .-··---..... (Q)...................... I,,...·l OHHHHOH•O•>••>•>••••>••·············""""' FJCl. 7 tinder tinder. -···88 Its a matc/1! c~:) ~...................................................................v-..... J F7G. 8 21 U.S. Patent Aug. 15, 2017 Sheet 6of11 US 9,733,811 B2,..-·1002 GENERATE USER POOL i /,..., 1004 DISPLAY USER POOL i / . 1006 RECEIVE USER PREFERENCE t 0'''"'''""'""'""'"'"~'__{_,1_0i_2--~ .. .......---~•.--.J~ 1014 ~ ALLOW COMMUNICATION STORE FIRST USER S PREFERENCE 1 i ·-1016 ~""""""""""""""""""""'"'""""'"'"{........................ DO NOT ALLOW COMMUNICATION FIG. 10 21 U.S. Patent Aug. 15, 2017 Sheet 7of11 US 9,733,811 B2,.,.1102 RECEIVE PAIR OF USER IDENTIFIERS mmmmmmmmmm~• ~ t•• 11 06 (-1i08 ~-........................................i.............................................. .. ALLOW DO NOT ALLOW COMMUNICATION COMMUNICATION F7G. 11 21 U.S. Patent Aug. 15, 2017 Sheet 8of11 US 9,733,811 B2 ~? Sent Matches ............................................ ~~~-~---------------------------·--····--······· ---········································-~-·---------------------··----··-------·······················--·----· 1204·~ (~~-=··-······~··--···~--______) John Stiles Richard Miles ._,_ ___ .............................................. ._., -.~--··----~·-------------------····· FJ(J. 12A 21 U.S. Patent Aug. 15, 2017 Sheet 9of11 US 9,733,811 B2 ~ Sent Matches (.,...................................................................................................................................................... ~..,., --· 1204 \..,Q Search. ___/ .) ..... ·-·1202 FIG. 12B 21 U.S. Patent Aug. 15, 2017 Sheet 10 of 11 US 9,733,811 B2,,. -~------~-~------"""' (<s-......Matchmaker .................) ....... ~ Sent Matches 1206- 1202·--- FIG. .12C 21 U.S. Patent Aug. 15, 2017 Sheet 11 of 11 US 9,733,811 B2 ----------------------- ........................................................,<_...................... --·-1 ~---~-~---~~ (___ Recent ____j A-Z ..........................-................................ ~~-~~ ............................................ -~---------------------------------------········· ·--~-~-------------------·····················----·---! FIG. 12D 21 US 9,733,811 B2 1 2 MATCHING PROCESS SYSTEM AND compnsmg traits of a respective user. It also comprises METHOD receiving a preference indication for a first user profile of the plurality of user profiles. It further comprises determining a RELATED APPLICATION potential match user profile of the plurality of user profiles based on the preference indication for the first user profile. This application is a continuation-in-part of Ser. No. The method also comprises presenting the potential match 12/339,301, entitled "MATCHING PROCESS SYSTEM AND METHOD," filed Dec. 19, 2008. user profile to a second user. This application claims benefit under 35 U.S.C. §119(e) to Receiving a preference indication for a first user profile U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 61/793,866, entitled may include receiving from a third user a recommendation 10 "SOCIAL MATCHING SYSTEM AND METHOD," filed of the first user profile for the second user. It may also Mar. 15, 2013. include receiving from the second user a preference indica- tion for the first user profile. The method may further include TECHNICAL FIELD determining a score of a third user profile of the plurality of user profiles as a potential match for the second user. It may This invention relates generally to computer matching 15 also include altering the score of the third user profile based systems and more particularly to a matching process system and method. on the preference indication for the first user profile. In another embodiment, a method for profile matching BACKGROUND comprises receiving a plurality of user profiles, each user 20 profile comprising traits of a respective user. The method Networking architectures have grown increasingly com- further comprises receiving a request for matches from a plex in communications environments. In recent years, a first user, the first user associated with a first user profile. series of protoc ols and configurations have been developed The method also comprises scoring the plurality of user in order to accommodate a diverse group of end users having profiles for potential matching with the first user based on various networking needs. Many of these architectures have 25 comparisons of the plurality of user profiles with the first gained significant notoriety because they can offer the user profile. It also comprises identifying a second user benefits of automation, convenience, management, and enhanced consumer selections. profile of the plurality of user profiles as a potential match Certain network protocols may be used in order to allow for the first user based on the scoring. The method further an end user to conduct an on-line search of candidates to fill comprises identifying commonality between a third user a given vacancy. These protocols may relate to job searches, 30 profile of the plurality of user profiles and the second user person finding services, real estate searches, or on-line profile. In addition, the method comprises presenting to the dating. While some believe that on-line dating is simply a first user the third user profile as a potential match for the matter of matching supply and demand, there is statistical first user. and empirical evidence to suggest that successful on-line Depending on the specific features implemented, particu- dating entails far more. 35 lar embodiments may exhibit some, none, or all of the For example, people having similar and/or compatible following technical advantages. Various embodiments may character traits and values should be matched together. be capable of dynamically updating match search results However, effectively linking two participants together can based on user activity. Some embodiments may be capable prove to be a challenging endeavor. Coordinating a relation- of enhancing match search results by reducing the impact of ship between two like-minded individuals can be a signifi- 40 restrictive user preferences. In addition, some embodiments cant chore, as there are a number of obstacles and barriers may provide the ability to evaluate the attractiveness of that must be overcome. potential matches. Various embodiments may be capable of One problem that has arisen is that matching services are importing user profiles from other social-networking sys- limited to searching for matches only within their own tems. Some embodiments may be capable of generating the platform. Thus, only people who have gone through the 45 pool of users based on both explicit and implicit criteria process of signing up for the service are searched for a match. One solution to this problem is to have users register derived from other social networking systems. Other tech- in multiple services. This is problematic because it can be nical advantages will be readily apparent to one skilled in the expensive and time consuming for users. Further, the user art from the following figures, description and claims. must then visit all of the services to monitor the search progress: this inefficiency may cause users to give up on the 50 BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS search process. Another problem is that the search results of these ser- Reference is now made to the following description taken vices contain many irrelevant entities to the searcher. This in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein costs the user of the service time and may deter them from like reference numbers represent like parts, and which: continuing through all of the search results. 55 FIG. lA is an overview of one embodiment of the Another problem is that large numbers of unwanted matching system; communication requests can become a nuisance to the user. FIG. 13 shows the contents of the terminal from FIG. lA; Too many nuisance requests may deter the user from further FIG. lC shows the contents of the matching server from use of the system. Users with the most attractive profiles are FIG. lA; oftentimes the ones that receive the most unwanted atten- 60 FIG. lD is a diagram of a database from FIG. lC showing ti on. If the users with the most attractive profiles cease to use one embodiment of how a matching server stores a pool; the system, the quality of the user pool deteriorates, FIG. lE is a diagram of the display from FIG. 1B showing one embodiment of the presentation of search results to a SUMMARY user; 65 FIG. lF is a diagram of the display from FIG. lB showing In one embodiment, a method for profile matching com- one embodiment of the presentation of details of a match prises receiving a plurality of user profiles, each user profile result entity to a user; 21 US 9,733,811 B2 3 4 FIG. 2 is a diagram depicting how a user may recommend browsing), component, or element capable of accessing one an entity to another user, in accordance with a particular or more elements within system 100. Interface 16, which embodiment; may be provided in conjunction with the items listed above, FIG. 3 is a diagram of the display from FIG. lB depicting may further comprise any suitable interface for a human user how the user may be made aware of fate characteristics the such as a video camera, a microphone, a keyboard, a mouse, user shares with a match result entity, in accordance with a or any other appropriate equipment according to particular particular embodiment; configurations and arrangements. In addition, interface may FIG. 4 is a diagram depicting how two platforms may be be a unique element designed specifically for communica- searched for a match, in accordance with a particular tions involving system 100. Such an element may be fab- embodiment; 10 ricated or produced specifically for matching applications FIG. 5 is a flow chart indicating how a result list may be involving a user. generated, in accordance with a particular embodiment; Display 12, in one embodiment, is a computer monitor. FIG. 6 shows one embodiment of the matching system Alternatively, display 12 may be a projector, speaker, or displaying to a user the profile information of a second user; other device that allows user 14 to appreciate information FIG. 7 is a diagram of the display from FIG. 6 showing 15 that system 100 transmits. the effect of a left swipe gesture; Network 24 is a communicative platform operable to FIG. 8 is a diagram of the display from FIG. 6 showing exchange data or information emanating from user 14. the effect of a right swipe gesture; Network 24 could be a plain old telephone system (POTS). FIG. 9 shows the matching system displaying a match of Transmission of information emanating from the user may a first user and a second user, in accordance with a particular 20 be assisted by management associated with matching server embodiment; 20 or manually keyed into a telephone or other suitable FIG. 10 is a flowchart depicting a method for enabling electronic equipment. In other embodiments, network 24 communication between two users of the matching system could be any packet data network offering a communications of FIG. 1 based on a mutual expression of approval, in interface or exchange between any two nodes in system 100. accordance with a particular embodiment; 25 Network 24 may alternatively be any local area network FIG. 11 is a flowchart depicting a method for enabling (LAN), metropolitan area network (MAN), wide area net- communication between two users of the matching system work (WAN), wireless local area network (WLAN), virtual of FIG. 1 based on a user suggested matching proposal, in private network (VPN), intranet, or any other appropriate accordance with a particular embodiment; and architecture or system that facilitates communications in a FIGS. 12A-D depict embodiments of a user interface. 30 network or telephonic environment, including a combination of any networks or systems described above. In various DETAILED DESCRIPTION embodiments, network connections 22 may include, but are not limited to, wired and/or wireless mediums which may be Referring to FIG. lA, one embodiment of a matching provisioned with routers and firewalls. system is shown. FIG. lA is a simplified block diagram of 35 Matching server 20 is operable to receive and to commu- a system 100 for facilitating an on-line dating scenario in a nicate information to terminal 10. In some embodiments, network environment. In other embodiments, system 100 matching server 20 may comprise a plurality of servers or can be leveraged to identify and to evaluate suitable candi- other equipment, each performing different or the same dates in other areas (e.g. hiring/employment, recruiting, real functions in order to receive and communicate information estate, general person searches, etc.). Users 14 interact with 40 to terminal 10. Matching server 20 may include software a matching server 20 through terminals 10. FIG. lB is a and/or algorithms to achieve the operations for processing, diagram showing, in one embodiment, the contents of ter- communicating, delivering, gathering, uploading, maintain- minal 10. Terminal 10 comprises interface 16 (so that user ing, and/or generally managing data, as described herein. 14 may be able to interact with terminal 10) and display 12. Alternatively, such operations and techniques may be FIG. lC is a diagram showing, in one embodiment, the 45 achieved by any suitable hardware, component, device, contents of matching server 20. Matching server 20 com- application specific integrated circuit (ASIC), additional prises memory 26 and at least one CPU 28. Memory 26 may software, field programmable gate array (FPGA), server, store multiple databases, such as databases 26a and 26b. processor, algorithm, erasable programmable ROM Terminal 10 and matching server 20 are communicatively (EPROM), electrically erasable programmable ROM (EE- coupled via network connections 22 and network 24. 50 PROM), or any other suitable object that is operable to Users 14 are clients, customers, prospective customers, or facilitate such operations. entities wishing to participate in an on-line dating scenario In some embodiments, user 14, using terminal 10, include and/or to view information associated with other participants user 14 submitting information to matching server 20 about in the system. Users 14 may also seek to access or to initiate user 14 as well as characteristics user 14 is seeking to be a communication with other users that may be delivered via 55 matched with. Such information may include a user handle, network 24. Users 14 may review data (such as profiles, for which may be a combination of characters that uniquely example) associated with other users in order to make identifies user 14 to matching server 20. In various embodi- matching decisions or elections. Data, as used herein, refers ments, matching server 20 may be configured to collect this to any type of numeric, voice, video, text, or script data, or information; for example, matching server 20 may be con- any other suitable information in any appropriate format that 60 figured to ask user 14 to respond to a series of questions. may be communicated from one point to another. Matching server 20 may be configured to receive the infor- In one embodiment, terminal 10 represents (and is inclu- mation submitted by user 14 and create a profile for user 14 sive of) a personal computer that may be used to access based on that information, storing the profile in memory 26. network 24. Alternatively, terminal 10 may be representative As an example only, consider a case where user 14 is of a cellular telephone, an electronic notebook, a laptop, a 65 interested in participating in an on-line dating scenario. User personal digital assistant (PDA), or any other suitable device 14 can access the Internet via terminal 10, travel to a web (wireless or otherwise: some of which can perform web site managed by matching server 20, and begin, the regis- 21 US 9,733,811 B2 5 6 tration process. As part of the registration process, matching in another embodiment, matching server 20 may provide server 20 may ask user 14 a series of questions which user with a way to directly contact the entity, such as sending identifies characteristics about user 14. Thus, matching a message or providing voice or video communication server 20 may ask about the height, weight, age, location, between user 14 and the entity. Even further, matching and ethnicity ofuser 14. It may also ask about the birthplace, server 20 may be configured to allow user 14 to express a parents, eating habits, activities, and goals of user 14. negative preference for the entity through dislike button 36. Matching server 20 may further use the registration process In one embodiment, when, for example, dislike button 36 is to discover what user 14 may be looking for in a match, such utilized by user 14, matching server 20 may remove the as age, weight, height, location, ethnicity, diet, education, entity from result list 31; in another embodiment, the entity etc. Further, matching server 20 may ask user 14 to indicate 10 may be removed from pool 30 of users from which matches how important certain factors are when looking for a match. are identified. For example, matching server 20 may allow the user to As an example only, consider that user 14 has submitted indicate which characteristics in a potential match are a a search request to matching server 20. Matching server 20 necessity. In another example, matching server 20 may ask, may search through pool 30, identify results, and commu- "How important is it that your match does not smoke?" 15 nicate result list 31 to user 14 which would contain other Matching server 20 may also allow the user to indicate that users for whom matching server 20 had created a profile and certain characteristics are not important search criteria. For who were identified through a search and selection process. example, when asking user 14 about what height or weight Next, user 14 may be interested in learning more about Jane user 14 is seeking in a match, matching server 20 may be Doe, entity 31a; thus, user 14 would click view button 33 configured to receive "not important" as a response. In vet 20 associated with Jane Doe. Matching server 20 would receive another example, matching server 20 may allow user 14 to this request and respond by displaying Jane Doe's profile rate which factors are important on a numerical scale. For (stored in memory 26), as depicted in FIG. lF. Next, after example, matching server 20 may ask user 14 the following: reading the profile, user 14 may be interested in contacting "On a scale of 1-10, how important is it that your match has Jane Doe; hence, user 14 would click contact button 35. the same education level as you?" In some embodiments, 25 Matching server 20 would respond by allowing user 14 enter matching server 20 may specify that any number of ques- a message that matching server 20 would then communicate tions or requested descriptions are necessary before regis- to Jane Doe. tration may be concluded. As an example only, matching Matching server 20 may even further be configured to server 20 may require that user 14 communicate the sex of allow user 14 to store a match result entity; in one embodi- user 14 and the sex user 14 prefers to be matched with. After 30 ment, the system may be configured to allow user 14 to concluding the registration process, matching server 20 may utilize favorite button 34 that will add the desired match store the responses of user 14 as a profile. This same process result entity into another list. In another embodiment, uti- may be repeated by several different users 14, causing lizing favorite button 34 will remove the associated match matching server 20 to contain a plurality of profiles. result entity from result list 31. FIG. lD depicts an embodiment in which matching server 35 As an example only, user 14 may decide that he would 20 has a database 26a which contains a pool 30. Each entry like to save Jane Doe's profile so that he can review it later. in database 26a has a pool entity 30a along with information User 14 may click favorite button 34, and matching server concerning that entity. In one embodiment, each pool entity 20 may respond by placing Jane Doe's profile into a separate 30a-e represents a user and their profile. In some embodi- list. Further, matching server 20 may also remove Jane Doe ments, not all registered users are in pool 30. As discussed 40 from user's 14 result list 31. As a result, user 14 may see further below, matching server 20 may use a selection another match result entity populate result list 31. This is process for including stored profiles in pool 30. As depicted beneficial because it may focus user 14 on evaluating new in FIG. lD, in this embodiment, the collection of users and entities rather than reevaluating previously-known entities profiles forms pool 30 through which matching server 20 because the entities still appear in result list 31. may perform various functions such as searches for matches. 45 In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- Matching server 20 may be configured to search through figured to generate pool 30 by default according to various pool 30 and present matches to user 14. In FIG. lE, one characteristics and preferences of user 14 and other users of embodiment of this presentation is depicted as occurring the system. Matching server 20 may also restrict entities through display 12. In various embodiments, matches may from being included in pool 30 based on the status of the be presented to user utilizing other communication schemes, 50 profile, or if user 14 has rejected or blocked an entity. such as electronic messages (i.e., e-mail) or text messages Matching server 20 may also restrict entities from the pool (i.e., utilizing SMS). In the depicted embodiment, a result that have blocked or rejected user 14. For example, match- list 31 is presented to user 14. A match result entity 31a in ing server 20 may not allow profiles that are not in good a result list 31 may be associated with a view button 33. standing to be included in pool 30. In other embodiments, Using interface 16, user 14 may request that matching server 55 matching server 20 may be configured to generate pool 30 20 provide more information about an entity in result list 31 by first choosing seeds. Seeds include, but are not limited to, by pressing the associated view button 33. Matching server profiles that user has sent a message to or profiles that user 20 may then communicate to user 14 more information 14 has expressed a preference for. Each seed is then com- about that entity by retrieving the information from memory pared to other entities to determine which entities will be 26. In FIG. lF, one embodiment of information that match- 60 included in pool 30. Any suitable method can be used to ing server 20 provides for user 14 is shown. Using display determine which entities are included in pool 30. For 12, user 14 views an entity from result list 31. Matching example, any characteristics or algorithms described herein server 20 may also provide user 14 with the ability to contact may form the basis of such a determination. As another the entity through a contact button 35. In one embodiment, example, a commonality score may be generated based on when contact button 35 is utilized by user 14, matching 65 the comparison between each entity and the seed. In some server 20 may provide user 14 with contact information of embodiments, this commonality score can be a measure of the entity such as a telephone number or an e-mail address; how physically similar the users are to each other. This score 21 US 9,733,811 B2 7 8 may be generated based on the number of users that have alism. Such scales may provide the advantage of improved expressed a positive preference for both the seed and the matching through deeper appreciation for the personality of entity being compared. This score may also be generated entities in the system. based on whether the seed and entity have been viewed In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- together in one session; further, the more times the seed and figured to analyze profile text for categories. It may search entity have been viewed together, the larger the common- for a number of text strings and then associate the profile ality score. The law of large numbers may allow for a vast with any number of categories. As an example only, match- amount of such commonalties to be established over a few ing server 20 may add any profile to the Cat category whose days. Testing has revealed that using such commonality text contains any of the following strings: 10 "cat" "cats" "cat." "cats." "cat," "cats," scoring methods has yielded at least one physical match for Matching server 20 may be configured to make it more 80% of users whose profile has been viewed at least once, likely that a profile will be in a result list if categories and between and 1000 physical matches for 60% of users associated with the profile are also categories found in the whose profile has been viewed at least once. Matching user's profile who submitted the search request. server 20 may be further configured to allow entities that 15 Matching server 20 may be configured to analyze one or have a commonality score above a certain threshold to more portions of the text of an entity's profile and generate become a part of pool 30. Matching server 20 may further a readability score that may be used in various ways, such be configured to update pool 30. In some embodiments, as in the process of searching for matches for user 14. In matching server 20 may do so by creating new seed entities some embodiments, matching server 20 may analyze factors based on activity by user 14, such as indicating a preference 20 such as, but not limited to; average number of words per for that entity. Further, matching server may then compare sentence, total number of words with greater than three the chosen seed entity with other profiles stored in matching syllables, and total number of words in the profile. Matching server 20 and determine whether those profiles will be server 20 may also concatenate all of the collected responses included in pool 30 using a threshold score as described with a single space between them. It may further break the above. At least one advantage realized by this embodiment 25 text into sentences, words, and syllables. From these statis- is that user 14 is presented with updated potential matches tics, matching server 20 may also be configured to generate which increases the likelihood of user 14 finding a suitable a readability score by, in one embodiment, taking the aver- match. Another advantage present in certain embodiments is age of the Flesch Kincaid Reading Ease test, the Flesch that these updated potential matches have a greater likeli- Kincaid Grade Level test, and the Gunning Fox score. Other hood of compatibility with user 14 since they are chosen 30 embodiments may utilize any other combination of these or based on their commonality with entities user 14 has other tests to determine a readability score. In some embodi- expressed a preference for. ments, analyses may be used to determine the IQ of an As an example only, consider the case in which user 14 entity, the grade level of the writing, or how nervous the has registered, requested a search, and received from match- entity generally is. An advantage of this embodiment may be ing server 20 results list 31. Then, user 14 decides to contact 35 that the system provides user 14 with a metric for determin- Jane Doe and presses contact button 35. Aside from provid- ing approximate intelligence of other users. The readability ing user 14 with the ability to contact Jane Doe, matching score may be used, for example, in the matching process to server 20 will designate Jane Doe's profile as a seed. identify potential matches. Matching server 20 will then compare Jane Doe's profile to As an example only, the Flesch Kincaid Reading Ease other profiles stored in memory 26 in order to identify other 40 score may be generated by first computing the following users who may be similar to Jane Doe and thus be a good intermediate score: match for user 14. In this example, matching server 20 will generate a commonality score for each of these comparisons 206.835-(1,015*[Average Words per Sentence])- (84.6*[Average Syllables per Word]) and compare these scores to a preset threshold. If the commonality score is lower than the threshold, that profile 45 Then, the Flesch Kincaid Reading Ease score is determined will not be added to pool 30. However, if the commonality by using the following table: score is higher than the threshold, matching server 20 will add this profile to pool 30. As an example, further assume that the seed, Jane Doe, is being compared to another entity, Flesh Kincaid Reading Ease Susan Smith. Based on the fact that both Susan and Jane 50 Intermediate Score Condition Score have three users (Tom, Dick, and Harry) who have expressed <100 4 a positive preference for their profiles, matching server 20 <91 generates a commonality score of 100 for the comparison. In <81 <71 7 contrast, matching server 20 generated a commonality score <66 of 50 for the comparison between the seed (Jane Doe) and 55 <61 9 yet another entity, Lucy Goosey. This was because only one <51 10 user (Bob) had indicated a positive preference toward both <31 13 <O 14 Lucy and Jane. Continuing the example, matching server 20 Else 15 is using a commonality threshold score of 70, which results in including Susan's profile (whose commonality score was 60 greater than the threshold score) in pool 30 and excluding The Flesch Kincaid Grade Level may be computed accord- Lucy's (whose commonality score was less than the thresh- ing to the following old score). Thus, user 14 gets the benefit of having more entities identified that may be good matches. (0.39*[Average Words Per Sentence])+(ll.8*[Aver- age Syllables Per Word])-15.59 In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- 65 figured to include behavioral scales. These may include The Gunning Fox score may be computed according to the multi-item scales for materialism and gender-role tradition- following: 21 US 9,733,811 B2 9 10 ([Average Words Per Sentence]+(([Nurnber Of as well as how many times that entity has been part of a Words With More Than 3 Syllables ]/[Number result list in order to impute the level of physical attractive- of Words In Entire Text])+l00))*0.4 ness. Matching server 20 may further be configured to As indicated, any suitable tests may be utilized m any generate a score based on this data. Further, in some suitable manner to determine a readability score. embodiments, matching server 20 may impute physical In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- attractiveness to an entity based on the imputed physical figured to allow a user to interact with the result list of attractiveness scores of other entities. Matching server 20 another user. Matching server 20 may be configured to allow may compute an average of the imputed physical attractive- a user to express a preference for entities within a result list ness scores of the other entities weighted by the common- of another user, and to indicate to the other user of this 10 ality score between each of the other entities and the present preference. Thus, a user may be able to get advice from a entity. Empirical data indicates that people are more likely friend regarding what other users may constitute good to match with people of similar attractiveness. Thus, in many matches for the user and thus be able to find a better match. embodiments, a user may obtain an advantage in that they As an example only, consider FIG. lA and FIG. 2. Two are able to be presented with potential matches that, accord- users 14, Harry and Sally, are connected to matching server 15 ing to one measurement, are as attractive as the user. 20 via terminals 10. Display 12a is used by Harry while As an example only, consider a registered user, Sally, display 12b is used by Sally. Matching server 20 allows whose profile was created by matching server 20 in January. Sally to view Harry's result list 31 on her terminal in display Since that time, matching server 20 has recorded the number l2b. By pressing recommend button 37. Sally may indicate of times Sally's profile has appeared in any user's result list a preference for one or more of the entities in result list 31. 20 31; assume that this has occurred 10 times. Further, match- Assume Sally presses recommend button 37 associated with ing server 20 has also recorded the number of times a user Jane Joe. After doing so, matching server 20 will notify has viewed Sally's profile by clicking view button 33 Harry of Sally's preference. On Harry's display 12a, match- associated with Sally's profile; assume that this has hap- ing server 20 will cause notification 39 to appear, associating pened 5 times. In this manner, matching server 20 has it with Jane Joe. Notification 39 will indicate to Harry that 25 constructed a ratio that represents the imputed physical Sally has recommended Jane Los as a potential match. Harry attractiveness of Sally's profile. Still further, assume that may find Sally's preference helpful in determining which Harry, a registered user, now submits a query. Matching entities he should pursue further if, for example, he believes server 20 has evaluated the imputed physical attractiveness Sally understands the type of person he is looking for. ratio of Harry's profile. When evaluating Sally's profile for In one embodiment, matching server 20 may be config- 30 inclusion in result list 31 returned to Harry, matching server ured to analyze the profiles of both user 14 and the entities 20 will compare the imputed physical attractiveness of in pool 30 for keywords. Matching server 20 may be Sally's profile and Harry's profile. The more similar the configured to search through the profile of user 14 for ratios associated with Harry and Sally's profiles are to each keywords that relate to things such as activities and interests. other, the more likely it is that Sally's profile will be selected Matching server 20 may generate a score for each entity in 35 by matching server 20 to be in Harry's result list 31. In pool 30 based on a comparison between the list of keywords another example, assume that Sally's profile has not been found in user's 14 profile and a similarly-generated list of registered long enough to generate a meaningful imputed keywords of each entity in pool 30. In one embodiment, this physical attractiveness ratio. Matching server 20 may then is accomplished by storing a list of words in memory 26, and generate an imputed physical attractiveness score based on using it to identify keywords in the searched profiles. In 40 entities that Sally does have commonality scores with. This some embodiments, identified keywords may be used as a computed average may be weighted by the strength of the means of weighting various scores. As an example only, a commonality score between Sally and each entity with profile that contains the word "God" may be weighted much whom she has a commonality score. Continuing the differently than a profile which has merely indicated that example, assume that Sally has a commonality score of 5 their religious preference is Christian. In various embodi- 45 with Lucy and 10 with Julia. When matching server 20 ments, this may provide an advantage to user 14 in that user computes the Sally's average, it will give twice as much 14 is able to determine how similar he/she is with a potential weight to Julia's imputed physical attractiveness score than match. In addition, the keyword analysis may be used by the to Lucy's. system when searching and identifying matches for a user. In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- As an example only, consider two registered users, Harry 50 figured to make an entity in result list 31 more appealing to and Sally, both of whom have profiles stored in matching user 14 by pointing out coincidences in the profile data that server 20. Matching server 20 then analyzes each of these give user 14 a sense of fate with the entity. In one embodi- profiles by comparing it to a list of predefined keywords. ment, matching server 20 may be configured to search for Matching server 20 then associates each word that matched similar initials, birthplaces, birth dates, birth month, birth the list of keywords with each profile. Now assume that 55 year, university, first names, last names, user handles, paren- Harry performs a search. While fulfilling Harry's query, tal occupations, and keywords to identify users who may matching server 20 evaluates Sally's profile for inclusion in give another user a sense of fate. In other embodiments, Harry's result list 31. This evaluation includes comparing matching server 20 may use the fate characteristics as a the list of keywords found in Harry's profile to the keywords metric in the matching process. found in Sally's profile. The more keywords that Harry and 60 As an example only, assume that Harry is a registered user Sally have in common, the more likely it will be that who has performed a search. After matching server 20 matching server 20 will include Sally's profile in Harry's returns a result list, Harry chooses to learn more about one result list 31. of the entities in the result list and clicks view button 33. In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- Consider FIG. 3, which is only an example of information figured to impute a level of physical attractiveness to an 65 that matching server 20 may return to Harry after clicking entity in pool 30. Matching server 20 may be configured to view button 33. In Harry's display 12, matching server 20 monitor how frequent an entity in pool 30 has been viewed presents certain details about the profile. In particular, 21 US 9,733,811 B2 11 12 matching server 20 presents to Harry a fate notification 32 matching server 20 examines Sally's profile in pool 30, and which points out specific similarities between the profile of determines that the stated locations of Harry's and Sally's the entity and Harry's profile. Reading fate notification 32 profiles are 13 miles apart. Matching server 20 will give gives Harry a sense of familiarity which enhances his Sally's profile a score as ifthe distance between them were appreciation for the profile. only 10 miles. However, in yet another example. Sally's In another example, fate characteristics may be used to profile may indicate that she lives 50 miles away from Harry. decide whether a profile in pool 30 is included in user's 14 Yet, matching server 20 also notes that both Harry and Sally result list 31. Assume that Harry is a registered user who has make $100,000 per year, have Master's degrees, and that submitted a matching query to matching server 20. While Harry and Sally are one year apart in age (Harry is older). determining which entities to include in Harry's result list, 10 Given these similarities, matching server 20 will give a score matching server 20 considers two profiles; Sally and Roxy. to Sally's profile that is consistent with a 20 mile difference Sally and Harry both have the same birth date, initials, and in location even though they are actually 50 miles apart. In have parents that work in the same profession. In contrast. this manner, matching server 20 takes into account empirical Roxy and Harry only share the same birth place. Matching data that shows that people searching for matches who server 20 may be configured to award more points to Sally 15 indicate that they want to see matches who live close to them than to Roxy based on these comparisons, making it more are still willing to pursue a potential match that lives far likely that Sally's profile will be included in Harry's result away if the potential match fits very closely with the other list. search criteria. In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- In another embodiment, matching server 20 may be figured to evaluate the likelihood of contact between user 14 20 configured to evaluate the age difference between user 14 and an entity in pool 30. Matching server 20 may be and pool entity 30a using ranges as well as a sliding scale. configured to compare demographic data between user 14 By way of example only, matching server 20 may be and pool entity 30a. In another embodiment, matching configured to assign a high value to an age difference server 20 may be configured to weigh the demographic between 0 and -5, while assigning a lower value to an age similarities and differences based on the sex of user 14. The 25 difference between +2 and 0. An even lower value may be demographic data may include, but is not limited to, age, assigned to an age difference between -6 and -8. Even lower education, ethnicity, income, and location. values would be assigned incrementally as the age difference As an example only, assume that Harry and Sally are increases outside of the ranges discussed. The higher the registered users who have profiles in matching server 20. assigned value is, the more likely it will be that pool entity Harry has submitted a search request to matching server 20. 30 30a will be included in result list 31. Yet another embodi- While fulfilling this request, matching server 20 evaluates ment may apply this combination of ranges and a sliding Sally's profile since her profile is in pool 30. As part of the scale but use different values and ranges depending on the evaluation, matching server 20 looks at the differences sex of user 14. between Harry and Sally's stated age, income, education, As an example only, consider a situation in which a ethnicity, and location. In this example, Harry is 10 years 35 registered user, Harry, requests a search to be performed. older than Sally, makes $10,000 more per year, and has a While fulfilling this request, matching server 20 evaluates Master's degree while Sally has a bachelor's degree. Even Sally's profile, which was in pool 30. As part of the with these disparities, matching server 20 will give Sally's evaluation, matching server 20 compares the ages of Harry profile a high score which makes it more likely that Sally's and Sally, and determines that Harry is two years older than profile will appear in Harry's result list. However, if it was 40 Sally; this determination leads to matching server 20 assign- Sally who submitted the search, and matching server 20 was ing, in this example, points to Sally's profile. Matching evaluating Harry's profile, a different score is possible. So, server 20 may also be configured to assign 50 points to if it were Sally who was 10 years older, made $10,000 more Sally's profile had she been five years younger than Harry; per year, and had a Master's degree while Harry had a but, if she had been up to two years older than Harry, Bachelor's degree, matching server 20 would give a low 45 matching server 20 may have been configured to assign 40 score to Harry's profile, making it less likely that his profile points to her profile. Matching server 20 may be further would appear in Sally's result list. Matching server 20 may configured to assign 30 points to Sally's profile if she was 6 be configured this way because empirical data has shown to 8 years younger than Harry. However, if Sally were more that these demographic differences do not have an equiva- than 8 years younger than Harry, matching server 20 may be lent effect on the choices men and women make regarding 50 configured to further decrease the number of points assigned matches. to her profile: if she was 9 years younger, then 25 points; if In another embodiment, matching server 20 may be she was 10 years younger, 20 points; if she was 11 years configured to compare the locations of user 14 and pool younger, 15 points; etc. The more points assigned to Sally's entity 30a in increments of ten miles. In yet another embodi- profile, the more likely it is that her profile will appear in ment, matching server 20 may be configured to score the 55 Harry's result list. Thus, matching server 20 may be con- location comparison in light of other factors; as an example, figured to assign a score based on age difference using a matching system 20 may be configured to return a score combination of ranges and a sliding scale. consistent with a 10 mile difference in location even though In another example, matching server 20 may assign scores there is a 50 mile difference between user 14 and pool entity differently if it was Sally who was searching and if it was 30a if user 14 and pool entity 30a have the same income, 60 Harry's profile that was being evaluated. In this example, education, and age. An advantage realized in several matching server 20 may be configured to assign Harry's embodiments is that it better approximates how a user profile 50 points ifhe were between 1 and 5 years older than evaluates entities. Entities that live further away are gener- her. If he were 6 to 8 years older than her, matching server ally less appealing to a user; but, users may still be interested 20 may assign 45 points. If he were greater than 8 years if the entity matches their preferences in other categories. 65 older than her, matching server 20 may assign points in the As an example only, consider a registered user, Harry, following fashion: if he was 9 years older, 40 points would who submits a search request. While fulfilling this request, be assigned; if he was 10 years older, 35 points would be 21 US 9,733,811 B2 13 14 assigned; etc. However, if he was up to two years younger server 20 may then examine Harry's profile to determine a than Sally, matching server 20 may assign 50 points to his similar average. If Harry's profile has an average close to 6, profile. If he were more than two years younger, matching it will be more likely that matching server 20 will include server 20 may assign less points on a sliding scale: 45 points Sally's profile in Harry's result list. If Harry's profile if he were 3 years younger, 40 points if he were 4 years average is lower than 6, it will be less likely that Sally's younger, etc. The more points assigned to Harry's profile, profile will be included in Harry's result list. If Harry's the more like it is that his profile will appear in Sally's result profile average is greater than 6, it will be even less likely list. This example illustrates how matching server 20 may be that Sally's profile will be included in Harry's result list. The configured to take the sex of user 14 into account when more Harry's profile average deviates from that of Sally's, scoring based on age differences. 10 the less likely it will be that matching server 20 will present In various embodiments, matching server 20 may be Sally's profile in Harry's result list. configured to evaluate the attractiveness of an entity in pool In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- 30 through collected feedback from other users. In one figured to analyze profile information and received activity embodiment, matching server 20 may present an entity to information to construct "pairs" which link at least two user 14, prompting user 14 to rate the attractiveness of the 15 profiles. These pairings may also be associated with a value entity on a scale from 1-9. This range gives the advantage of that ascertains the quality of the pairing. For example, a having a midpoint. Matching server 20 may further be pairing which results from one user viewing the profile of configured to collect such responses and store them; in one another user may be assigned a value that is less than a embodiment, matching server 20 may store the data in pairing which results from a first user viewing the profile of memory 26, using a structure such as database 26b. Match- 20 a second user when the second user has also viewed the first ing server 20 may further be configured to compute the user's profile. Matching server 20 may use these pairings in average of such responses for the entity, and store this order to generate search results for entities within and number as well. In various embodiments, these values may outside of the pairing. Each member of the pair may be used be used in order to help in the matching process. Empirical as a seed entity for generating search results for users in data indicates that people are more likely to match with 25 matching server 20. In various embodiments, an advantage people of similar attractiveness. Thus, in various embodi- may be realized as matching server 20 analyzes many of ments, users whose attractiveness rating are similar will be these pairs to develop dynamic results to users of the system, more likely to appear in each other's result list. Further, a the results being potentially more relevant as matching user may indicate that they only want profiles in their result server 20 leverages the interaction between users and pro- list whose average attractiveness rating is higher than an 30 files to generate search results. indicated threshold. Pairs may be formed from a variety of user activity As an example only, assume registered user, Harry, uses received by matching server 20. This activity may include: terminal 10, which in this example is Harry's personal profile views, mutual profile views, one-way double blind computer, and establishes communication with matching communication, mutual double-blind communication, server 20. In this example, this communication occurs by 35 declining double blind communication, one way wink, Harry using a Web browser to access a Web page controlled mutual wink, expressing disinterest in response to receiving by matching server 20. Sometime after visiting the Web a wink, one way favorite, and mutual favorite. Other suitable page, matching server 20 may present Harry with an option activity may also be received by matching server 20 and to rate the physical attractiveness of other users registered utilized as a basis for generating pairs. with matching server 20. Using display 12 and interface 16, 40 For example, Harry may be a registered user who has Harry may view profiles of registered users and rank them expressed a positive preference for Sally. Matching server on a scale of 1-9 by entering the values using interface 16; 20 may be configured to generate a pair which includes in this example, interface 16 comprises a mouse and/or a Harry and Sally. Matching server 20 may utilize this pair keyboard. After submitting this rating, matching server 20 when providing search results to other users. Betty may have will associate it with the profile and store it. Matching server 45 requested matches, and Betty may be similar to Sally. 20 will also allow other users to rate profiles, thereby Matching server 20 may present Harry in Betty's result list collecting a plurality of rankings for profiles. Matching as a result of the pairing between Harry and Sally. Further. server 20 may use this data when trying to find matches for Jim may have executed a search and Jim may be similar to users. One example of this is that matching server 20 may Harry. As a result of the pairing between Sally and Harry, allow user 14 to specify that he/she is searching for profiles 50 matching server 20 may present Sally in Jim's list of search which have an average rating of 6 or above. In tum, results. matching server 20 may populate user's 14 result list from In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- the pool only with profiles whose average rating is at 6 or figured to encourage user 14 to interact with entities in pool above. Another example of how matching server 20 may use 30. For example, matching server 20 may present a list of this data involves making it more likely that an entity will 55 limited entities from pool 30 to user 14, but not present other appear in a user's result list if the entity and that user have entities to user 14 unless user 14 interacts with the already a similar average attractiveness rating. So, if a user has an presented entities. Possible interaction with these entities average rating of 6, then an entity with an average rating of may include viewing more information regarding the entity, 5 may be more likely to appear in the user's result list than expressing a positive or negative preference for the entity, an entity with an average rating of 2. 60 and choosing to contact the entity. Other suitable forms of In another example, assume that Harry is a registered user interaction may also be utilized. For example, matching and has requested a search. While fulfilling this request, server 20 may prompt the user with a question about the list matching server 20 evaluates Sally's profile. As part of this of entities, such as asking whether or not the user likes the evaluation, matching server 20 notices that Sally's profile entity. Responses to such prompts may include "yes," contains feedback from other users ranking the attractive- 65 "maybe," "no," "remove," and "remove other." The pre- ness of Sally's profile. Matching server 20, in this example, sented entities may be chosen using a variety of methods. averages that data; Sally's profile average is 6. Matching For example, the presented entities may be chosen based on 21 US 9,733,811 B2 15 16 various scoring algorithms as described above. In addition, In another embodiment, matching server 20 may be presented entities may be chosen using predictive analysis, configured to allow users of social networking platform to such as logistical regression. Other techniques may be used interact with matching server 20 using social networking to determine the presented entities. For example, entities that platform 50. This level of integration provides the advantage have been presented previously may be excluded. As of users not having to learn and sign up for a different another example, entities that have been blocked by user 14 platform. may also be excluded. In various embodiments, a combina- Social networking platform 50, in one embodiment, may tion of these techniques as well as others may be used to be a service which stores profiles of its users. This service determine the limited number of entities presented to user may be further configured to provide access to the stored 14. 10 profiles. In one embodiment, social networking platform 50 For example, Harry may be a registered user of the may also allow other services to interact with users of social matching system. Matching server 20 may be configured to networking platform 50 through social networking platform present to Harry a list of five entities that Harry must interact 50. with. Once Harry has interacted with these entities, match- In one embodiment, matching server 20 may be config- ing server 20 may present five more entities for Harry to 15 ured to collect requests from users of social networking interact with. Previously, Harry has blocked Sally, another platform 50 and perform a search through pool and set 52. registered user of the system. As a result, matching server 20 Matching server 20 may further be configured to present the may exclude Sally from being presented to Harry in the list results of this search from within social networking platform of five entities. Further, Harry has already interacted with 50. Matching server 20 may further be configured to present Betty, another registered user of the system: Harry sent a 20 entities in the search result from pool 30 as if they were message to Betty utilizing matching server 20. As a result, entities of set 52; in one embodiment, matching server 20 Betty will be excluded from being presented to Harry in the may be configured to generate profiles of entities from pool list of five entities. Matching server 20 may then choose two 30 into set 52. Thus, users of social networking platform 50 of the five entities using scoring algorithms described above. may view all of the entities in the search result, regardless For example, matching server 20 may choose Alice and Amy 25 of their source (either from pool 30 or set 52), within the to be presented in the list of five entities because Alice and environment of social networking platform 50. Any have received high scores when their profiles were As an example only, consider two users: Harry, for whom compared to Harry's profile. Matching server 20 may matching server 20 has created a profile, and Sally, who has choose the remaining three entities using predictive analysis. a profile stored in social networking platform 50. From According to this example, matching server 20 may use 30 within social networking platform 50, matching server 20 logistical regression to identify Carla. Christi, and Camela as presents to Sally the ability to perform a search which Sally the other three entities to present to Harry. Thus, in this uses. The results of this search are presented to Sally within example, Harry is presented with a list of five entities by social networking platform 50. In this example, Harry's matching server 20. Matching server 20 may not present profile is displayed to Sally as a search result along with another set of five entities until Harry has interacted with 35 other entities from set 52 though Harry's profile was from these five entities. Harry may interact with these entities in pool 30. In this example, matching server 20 uses the a variety of ways. For example, Harry may send a message algorithms discussed herein and searches through the pro- to Alice and send a "wink" to Amy. In addition, Harry, may files stored in pool 30 and set 52. In order to display Harry's choose to view more information about Carla's profile, but profile to Sally, matching server 20 creates a profile in set 52 express a negative preference towards Christi and Camela. 40 using the data stored in Harry's profile in pool 30. Sally is After matching server 20 receives these types of interaction then able to interact with this newly created profile from with the presented five entities, another set of five entities within social networking platform 50 in the same marmer as may be presented to Harry. she is other entities in set 52. In this example, matching server 20 may further he In another embodiment, matching server 20 may be configured to process the user interaction provided by Harry. 45 configured to allow its users to interact with social network- For example, matching server 20 may utilize Alice's profile ing platform 50 through matching server 20. In one embodi- as a seed entity to generate other possible entities to present ment, matching server 20 supplements pool 30 with set 52. to Harry since Harry sent a message to Alice. Thus, a benefit In yet another embodiment, entities from set 52 appear as is from presenting a the five entities to Harry in that the entities of pool 30 to the user in their list of search results. interaction between Harry and these entities may be utilized 50 In one embodiment, matching server 20 may be configured by matching server 20 to generate other entities for matching to generate profiles within pool 30 from entities of set 52; the to Harry. This serves as an example of how preferences may system may be configured to do so through capabilities be identified based on user behavior. provided by social networking platform 50, such as an In FIG. 4, one embodiment is disclosed wherein matching application prograniming interface. server 20, with pool 30, may be configured to interact with 55 As an example only, consider two users: Harry, whose another platform, such as social networking platform 50, profile is stored in matching server 20, and Sally, whose containing a set 52 of users. Users 14 are communicatively profile is stored in social networking platform 50. Harry coupled to matching server 20 and social networking plat- submits a search request to matching server 20. Matching form 50. Matching server 20 may further be configured to server 20 may return result list 31 to Harry, which, in this provide users of social networking platform 50 a service by 60 example, contains an entity representing Sally's profile. which they may search for users within set 52 or within pool Matching server 20 may accomplish this by creating profiles 30 using the algorithms and processing of matching server in pool 30 that correspond to the profiles found in set 52. 20. Matching server 20 may even further be configured to Once these profiles have been imported into pool 30, match- allow users of matching server 20 to search through pool 30 ing server 20 may then search through pool 30. While doing and set 52. Matching server 20 may be configured to parse 65 so, matching server 20 applies the algorithms and scores the profiles of the entities in set 52, collecting data and discussed herein. Thus, in this example, matching server 20 applying algorithms. has been configured to both search and apply scoring 21 US 9,733,811 B2 17 18 algorithms to entities in pool 30 and set 52. Further, in one -continued example, Harry is not able to distinguish that Sally's profile was originally stored in social networking platform 50. Number of Points for Condition Ordering Rather, matching server 20 presents Sally's profile in the same manner as other profiles stored in pool 30. Thus, in this Sarne answer for "pets" +65536 example, Harry may use favorite button 34, view button 33, Sarne answer for politics +8192 Sarne answer for relationship +O and contact button 35 when interacting with Sally's profile status in the same manner as described above. Sarne answer for "romance" +512 One advantage present in various embodiments is that a Sarne answer for smoking +262144 10 preferences user has a wider pool of entities to search through. Another Sarne answer for sports +8 advantage is that a user does not have to sign up with several interests platforms to search through the users on those platforms. Sarne answer for "system" +4096 FIG. 5 is a flowchart illustrating one embodiment of how result list 31 may be generated. At step 62, matching server 15 As an example only, consider a registered user, Harry, 20 generates pool 30, as described above. At step 64, who desires to perform a search. Before processing the matching server 20 applies a filter to pool 30, removing request, matching server 20 may ask Harry what sex he is certain entities; in various embodiments, this filter is based and what sex does he desire to be matched with; in this on user's 14 own sex and the sex user 14 desires to be example, Harry responds that he is a male seeking a female. matched with. At step 66, matching server 20 may be 20 After doing so, matching server 20 will generate pool 30 as configured to apply algorithms to pool 30 that will generate described above. Next, matching server 20 will apply a filter a plurality of scores for each entity in pool 30. In one to remove certain entities from pool 30. In this example, all embodiment, these algorithms may include analyzing the males will be removed from pool 30 since Harry is seeking text of the profiles of the entities in pool 30 to generate a a female. Further, all females seeking females will be readability score, determining how attractive an entity of 25 removed from pool 30 since Harry is a male. In other pool 30 is, or measuring how likely it is that user 14 will examples, other entities that are removed from pool 30 contact an entity of pool 30. At step 68, matching server 20 include entities that Harry has expressed a negative prefer- may be configured to collect all of the scores from step 66; ence for before, or entities that have expressed a negative in one embodiment, matching server 20 may use database preference for Harry. After pool 30 has been filtered, match- 26b to store all of these scores. At step 70, matching server 30 ing server applies a variety of scoring algorithms to the 20 may be configured to apply an ordering algorithm which entities remaining in pool 30. These algorithms may account will determine the order in which entities in result list 31 are for various comparisons such as those based on readability, presented to user 14. In one embodiment, this ordering likelihood to contact, fate, and keywords described above. algorithm is based, in part, on the scoring algorithms applied Matching server 20 will then tabulate these scores, storing at step 66. The ordering algorithm assigns points to each 35 them, in this example, in database 26b. Matching server 20 entity and orders them based on these values, constructing will then determine what order these entities are presented to result list 31. An embodiment of this ordering algorithm is Harry by applying an ordering algorithm. Here, matching surmnarized in the following table: server 20 assigns one ordering score to each entity by examining the results of the scoring algorithms. After doing 40 so, matching server will present result list 31 to Harry, where Number of Points for Condition Ordering the order of the entities that appear in the result list is based on the ordering algorithm. In this example, it is possible for Readability score 1 point +33554432 result list 31 to change. Consider another user, Sally, who higber than user Match result entity has +16777216 appears in Harry's result list. If Harry decides to add he_r into expressed a preference for 45 a separate list by using favorite button 34. Sally will be the user removed from result list 31 (as described above). However. Match result entity has been +8388608 Sally will also become a seed entity from which entities may recommended by a friend of the user be added to pool 30 (as described above). Hence, matching User has viewed the details +2097152 server 20 will update the pool, apply the filters, apply the of match result entity 50 scoring algorithms, tabulate the results, apply the ordering Match result entity has +1048576 algorithm, and update result list 31. As another example,~ commonality with an entity user has expressed a entity may update their profile which can change result list preference for 31. For example, assume Sally's profile had an ordering Both have the same ambition +128 algorithm score that placed her within the top 20 entities in Both have the same beliefs +16384 55 result list 31. Sally then changes her profile which results in Same answer for Build +64 Sarne answer for Car +1 keywords that match Harry's profile being added to her Both have the same diet +4 profile. Matching server 20 will then update her scoring Both have the same +131072 algorithms. In this example, the change in Sally's profile and preference for drinking resulting increase in keyword matches with Harry's profile alcohol Sarne answer for Ethnicity +1024 60 significantly increased her score. This was then reflected in Sarne answer for Fear +256 the ordering algorithm as it was also applied to the updated Sarne answer for Hair +2 profile. Afterwards. Sally's profile is now placed within the Sarne answer for Number of +524288 top 5 entities in result list 31. children Sarne answer for morning +32 In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- Sarne answer for "must have" +32768 65 figured to receive required characteristics from user 14 Sarne answer for "night out" +16 regarding a match. User 14 may be allowed to specify such restrictions based upon any number of characteristics, 21 US 9,733,811 B2 19 20 including those described herein. For example, matching server 20 can use the authentication features provided by server 20 may allow user 14 to specify that entities that social networking platform 50. For example, creating a user indicate they have children should not be displayed. In profile on matching server 20 containing false information another example, user 14 may specify that only entities becomes harder when the information must come from between the ages of 20 and 30 should be present in result list another verifiable and peer monitored source such as social 31. In some embodiments, matching server 20 may imple- networking platform 50. ment these restrictions in step 64 of FIG. 5 in other embodi- In some embodiments, matching server 20 may allow a ments, however, matching server 20 may refuse to apply user 14 to propose a match between two of his connections these restrictions to certain entities based on the character- within social networking platform 50. For example, Harry istics of the entities. Any number of characteristics, includ- 10 may be friends with both Bob and Sally within social ing those described herein, may form the basis upon which networking platform 50. Harry believes Bob and Sally are a matching server 20 decides not to apply the restrictions good match and therefore instructs matching server 20 to submitted by user 14. As an example only, matching server create a match between the two users in user profile pool 30. 20 may ignore the restrictions ifthe entity has a high enough Once matched, matching server 20 allows Harry and Sally attractiveness rating. In another example, though user 14 has 15 to communicate with each other. requested that no profiles which are located more than 50 In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- miles away should be present in result list 31, matching figured to apply a relevance algorithm which determines the server 20 may include such profiles because those profiles content and order in which matching server 20 displays have over 5 matching keywords, a high attractiveness rating, potential matches to user 14. A relevance algorithm may be and have specified the same life goals as user 14. Thus, in 20 based on both explicit and implicit signals from user 14. some embodiments, matching server 20 may refuse to apply Explicit signals include information entered by user 14 as restrictions submitted by user 14 based on any combination part of its user profile, such as height, weight, age, location, of characteristics or algorithms. income, and ethnicity. Explicit signals may also include An advantage present in many embodiments is that information about the characteristics user 14 is seeking in a through taking into account various factors when scoring 25 match, such as gender, hair color, eye color, or occupation. potential matches and using only very few strict filters, a Explicit signals may also be entered by user 14 as part of a large amount of result entities may be returned to the user. search request. For example, user 14 may request matching A further advantage is that the ordering algorithm will put server 20 limit the pool of potential matches to those users the most relevant search results first, saving the user time. within a fixed geographic region. Matching server 20 is FIGS. 6-9 depict embodiments of a user interface pre- 30 operable to compare geographic positions associated with sented to users of the matching system discussed above with the plurality of user profiles in user profile pool 30 with a respect to FIGS. 1and4. According to some embodiments, geographic position associated with user 14. Explicit signals users 14 interact with matching server 20 through interface may be imported from a social networking platform 50, such 16 presented by terminal 10. In addition to the embodiments as the number of shared entities in a social graph of user 14. of interface 16 described above in relation to FIG. lA, 35 Implicit signals may be based on the behavior of user 14 interface 16 may also comprise a touch screen interface either within system 100 or other social networking plat- operable to detect and receive touch input such as a tap or forms 50. For example, if user 14 has expressed disapproval a swiping gesture. In some embodiments, matching server of a user profile in the past, matching server 20 may no 20 may import profiles from other social networking sys- longer present the disapproved of user profile to user 14 in tems. This level of integration provides the advantage of 40 future searches. In various embodiments, matching server 20 users only having to update their profile information in one may be configured to evaluate the attractiveness of a user in place. For example, when user 14 updates his profile within user profile pool 30 through collected feedback from other social networking platform 50, matching server 20 is also users. For example, matching server 20 may rank a user able to access the updated profile information. profile that receives more likes as more relevant than a user In some embodiments, matching server 20 may further be 45 profile that receives fewer likes. In particular embodiments, configured, as part of the user registration process, to link to matching server 20 may assign a higher relevance to a user a user's existing profile within social networking platform profile if the other user has previously expressed a prefer- 50. Matching server 20 may be configured to parse the ence for user 14. As an example, user Harry may have profiles of the users in set 52, e.g., collecting data and previously expressed a preference for user Sally. If Sally applying algorithms. For example, matching server 20 may 50 requests a set of user profiles from matching server 20, and use explicit signals from social networking platform 50 such Harry's user profile is included in the set, matching server 20 as common friends, common interests, common network, may assign Harry's user profile a higher relevance based on location, gender, sexuality, or age to evaluate potential his expression of preference for Sally. This can result in matches between users 14. Matching server 20 may also use Harry's profile being presented to Sally sooner than other- implicit signals such as for whom a user 14 expresses 55 wise would have occurred. This may be advantageous in that approval and disapproval. Implicit signals may also include it can increase the chances of a match without compromising facial recognition algorithms to detect ethnicity, hair color, a user's feelings of privacy when expressing preferences for eye color, etc., of profiles that user 14 has expressed interest potential matches. In some embodiments, matching server Ill. 20 may be configured to use the fate characteristics as a In particular embodiments, matching server 20 may have 60 metric in the relevance algorithm. users 14 to link their user profiles to an existing profile In some embodiments, terminal 10 is operable to deter- within social networking platform 50. Matching server 20 mine its own geographic location by a global positioning may be configured to generate and add profiles to user satellite navigational system. Terminal 10 may also deter- profile pool 30 from entities of set 52; the system may be mine its own geographic location using cellphone-based configured to do so through capabilities provided by social 65 triangulation techniques. Wi-Fi based positioning system. networking platform 50, such as an application program- Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) system, or network ming interface. One advantage of linking is that matching addresses assigned by a service provider. 21 US 9,733,811 B2 21 22 FIG. 6 shows one embodiment of system 100 displaying suitable object across a screen of terminal 10. Other suitable to a user the profile information of a second user. Matching gestures or marmers of interacting with terminal 10 may be server 20 may be configured to search through its plurality used (e.g., tapping on portions of a screen of terminal 10). of profiles and present suggested matches to user 14. In FIG. In some embodiments, matching server 20 creates a 6, one embodiment of this presentation is depicted as match between two users 14 after both users 14 have occurring through the display of terminal 10. In this embodi- expressed a preference for each other's profiles using like ment, a plurality of user profiles is presented to user 14. button 86 or the swiping gesture associated with like button Using terminal 10, user 14 may request that matching server 86. When matching server 20 creates a match, it may also 20 present a subset of users from user profile pool 30 based provide the matched users with the ability to contact each on specified search parameters. The display may show an 10 other through a contact button. In some embodiments, when image of a suggested user and one or more aspects of the a match is created, matching server 20 may immediately (or suggested user's profile information. In some embodiments, soon thereafter) present an option to users 14 that have been the combination of image and one or more aspects of profile matched to engage in a communication session (e.g., a chat, information is displayed as "card" 88 representing the an SMS message, an e-mail, a telephone call, a voice suggested user. A set of suggested users may be displayed as 15 communication session, a video communication session). stack of cards 88. User 14 may view information regarding This may be done in response to a first user 14 expressing one suggested user at a time or more than one of the a preference for a second user 14 that has already expressed suggested users at a time. User 14 may be presented with a a preference for the first user 14. summary of information regarding a suggested user. The FIG. 9 shows one embodiment of matching system 100 summary may include one or more of: a picture, an icon, 20 displaying a match of a first user and a second user, in name, location information, gender, physical attributes, hob- accordance with a particular embodiment. Matching server bies, or other profile information. 20 may provide first user 14 and second user 14 with each In some embodiments, terminal 10 may also display other's contact information such as a telephone number or "information" button 84 which allows user 14 to request an e-mail address. Matching server 20 may also provide both matching server 20 to retrieve and display more information 25 first and second users 14 with a way to directly contact the about the presented user from user profile pool 30. In other, such as sending a message or providing voice or video addition, user 14 may express approval or disapproval for a communication between the first and second user. In some presented user. Expressing approval or disapproval can be embodiments, direct communication may be initiated by accomplished through various methods. For example, ter- pressing "Send a Message" button 92. Alternatively, a user minal 10 may display "like" button 86 (represented by a 30 may choose to continue browsing the set of presented users green heart icon) and "dislike" button (represented by a red by pressing "Keep Playing" button 94. "X" icon). Pressing like button 86 indicates to matching For example, user Harry may indicate a preference to server 20 that user 14 approves of and is interested in communicate directly with user Sally by selecting like communication with the presented user. Pressing dislike button 86. At this point. Sally is not aware that Harry button 82 indicates that user 14 disapproves of and does not 35 expressed a preference for her. If Sally also requests match- want to communicate with the presented user. The approval ing server 20 present her with a set of possible matches, preference of user 14 is anonymous in that matching server Harry may appear in her set. Sally may select like button 86 20 does not inform users 14 whether other users have (or perform an associated swiping gesture) when viewing expressed approval or disapproval for them. Harry's profile. Matching server 20 may then notify both As an example, consider two registered users, Harry and 40 Harry and Sally that a match occurred. At this point, both Sally, both of whom have profiles stored in matching server Harry and Sally are made aware that they each expressed 20. Harry is at a restaurant and requests matching server 20 approval of each other's profile. Matching server 20 then to present him users within a one-mile radius of his location. enables Harry and Sally to directly communicate with each Matching server 20 compares a geographic position associ- other (e.g., through a private chat interface). ated with Sally with a geographic position associated with 45 In some embodiments, one advantage of a system dis- Harry. If Sally is currently within the one-mile radius of closing preferences of profiles to users when mutual Harry and matching server 20 determines her profile infor- approval has occurred is that a user can feel more secure in mation matches Harry's preferences, matching server 20 their privacy knowing that their preferences will be dis- will present Harry one or more aspects of Sally's profile closed to those that have expressed a preference for that user. information. If other users also meet the search criteria, 50 As an example, a user can avoid embarrassment if their matching server 20 will present one or more aspects of those expression of preference for a profile was not reciprocated. users' profile information as well. Harry may request more This may lead to users more actively expressing their information about Sally by pressing information button 84. preferences. Such increased activity can be used by the Harry may also indicate his preference to communicate matching system to generate more potential matches or directly with Sally by selecting like button 86. In another 55 better rankings of potential matches. In some embodiments, example, Harry may expand his search to a twenty-five mile matching server 20 may be configured to allow direct radius to meet people in his town, not just his immediate communication between users when there has been a mutual vicinity. expression of preference. This may be advantageous FIGS. 7 and 8 are diagrams of embodiments of the display because users can avoid browsing, deleting, or responding to from FIG. 6 showing the effect of a left swipe gesture (FIG. 60 unwanted messages. 7) and the effect of a right swipe gesture (FIG. 8). In one FIG. 10 is a flowchart depicting a method for enabling embodiment, users 14 may navigate through the set of communication between two users of the matching system presented users by swiping through stack of cards 88. Users of FIG. 1 based on a mutual expression of approval, in 14 may also express approval of a presented user by per- accordance with a particular embodiment. forming a right swipe gesture or express disapproval by 65 At step 1002, in some embodiments, matching server 20 performing a left swipe gesture. In some embodiments, user generates a set of user profiles in response to a request for 14 performs a swiping gesture by moving a finger or other matching from a first user 14. At step 1004, matching server 21 US 9,733,811 B2 23 24 20 presents the set of user profiles to first user 14. Matching 1202 displays a set of connections user 14 has with other server 20 determines the contents and ordering of the set of users of, e.g., system 100 of FIG. 1. Connections may be users profiles by using, e.g., the relevance algorithms based on prior matches created by matching server 20. described above in the discussion of FIG. 4. For example, Connections may also be imported from another social matching server 20 may only include user profiles whose networking platform 50. Search area 1204 enables user 14 to contents indicate location within a specified geographical search for particular connections within system 100. In some radius and order the presentation of those user profiles based embodiments, the search may be limited to just the connec- on the number of mutual friends in common with first user tions displayed in connection list area 1202. Suggestion area 14. 1206 displays the connections that user 14 may use to form At step 1006, in some embodiments, matching server 20 10 a suggested match. receives an indication of the preference of first user 14 FIG. 12B illustrates suggestion area 1206 displaying a regarding a presented user profile. Matching server deter- first selected user (i.e., "Jonathan Smith") of a proposed mines if first user 14 expresses approval or disapproval of match between two users. User 14 identifies the first selected the presented user profile at step 1008. If first user 14 user through a set of interactions with connection list area disapproves of the presented user profile then a match is not 15 1202, search area 1204, and suggestion area 1206. For made and, at step 1016, matching server 20 will not allow example, user 14 may locate a connection in connection list communication between the two users. If first user 14 area 1202 by typing a user handle in search area 1204. User expresses approval for the presented user profile at step 14 may then add the connection to suggestion area 1206. In 1008, then matching server 20 will check if second user 14 some embodiments, user 14 may drag the connection from represented by the presented user profile has already 20 connection list area 1202 to suggestion area 1206. expressed a preference for first user 14 at step 1010. If FIG. 12C illustrates suggestion area 1206 displaying a matching server 20 detects a mutual expression of approval proposed match between two suggested users (i.e., "Jona- then a match is made between first and second users 14. than Smith" and "Mary Major"). For example, user 14 may Then, at step 1012, matching server 20 allows private locate a second connection in connect list area 1202 that user communications between first and second users 14. If a 25 14 believes is a match for the first connection. User 14 may mutual expression of approval is not detected at step 1010, add the second connection to suggestion area 1206. When then matching server 20 stores the preference of first user 14 both connections are added to suggestion area 1206, match- regarding the presented user profile for future comparison ing server 20 may create a match between the two users and and continues to step 1016 where private communications allow communication between them. are not yet allowed. 30 FIG. 12D illustrates an example communication interface FIG. 11 is a flowchart depicting a method for enabling between users of the matching system. User 14 is presented communication between two users of the matching system with chat box 1208 for each of the matches that exist for user of FIG. 1 based on a matching proposal suggested by a user, 14. Users 14 may communicate with each other through chat in accordance with a particular embodiment. At step 1102, box 1208. In some embodiments, users 14 may communi- matching server 20 receives interactions from first user 14. 35 cate through SMS messages, e-mail, telephone calls, online Interactions from first user 14 may include identification of voice communication sessions, and/or video communication user profiles for two other users 14. For example, Harry is sess10ns. connected to both Bob and Sally within social networking Modifications, additions, or omissions may be made to the platform 50. Harry believes Bob and Sally are a good match methods described herein (such as those described above for each other and generates a matching proposal requesting 40 with respect to FIGS. 5, 10 and 11) without departing from matching server 20 to create a match between Bob and Sally. the scope of the disclosure. For example, the steps may be At step 1104, in some embodiments, matching server combined, modified, or deleted where appropriate, and addi- validates the suggested matching proposal between second tional steps may be added. Additionally, the steps may be and third users 14. For example, matching server 20 verifies performed in any suitable order without departing from the that Bob's profile indicates that he wants to be matched with 45 scope of the present disclosure. a woman, and Sally's profile indicates that she wants to be Although several embodiments have been illustrated and matched with a man. Matching server may also verify that described in detail, it will be recognized that substitutions Sally has not previously expressed disapproval for Bob. If and alterations are possible without departing from the spirit matching server 20 determines the suggested matching and scope of the appended claims. proposal is valid, matching server 20 creates the match and 50 allows communication between the users 14 suggested to be What is claimed is: matched at step 1106. If matching server 20 determines the 1. A computer implemented method of profile matching, suggested matching proposal is not valid, matching server comprising: 20 does not create a match and does not allow communi- electronically receiving a plurality of user online-dating cation between second and third users 14 at step 1108. In 55 profiles, each profile comprising traits of a respective some embodiments, step 1104 may not be performed. For user and associated with a social networking platform; example, if a matching proposal is suggested, then matching electronically receiving a first request for matching, the server 20 may perform step 1106 with respect to the users first request electronically submitted by a first user suggested to be matched. using a first electronic device; FIGS. 12A-D depict embodiments of a user interface. In 60 determining a set of potential matches from the plurality some embodiments, the interface allows user 14 of terminal of user online-dating profiles for the first user in 10 to enable communication between other users 14 by response to receiving the first request; suggesting a matching proposal to matching server 20. causing the display of a graphical representation of a first FIG. 12A illustrates one embodiment of an interface for potential match of the set of potential matches to the proposing a match between two users. The interface is 65 first user on a graphical user interface of the first divided into three sections: connection list area 1202, search electronic device, the first potential match correspond- area 1204, and suggestion area 1206. Connection list area ing to a second user; 21 US 9,733,811 B2 25 26 determining that the first user expressed a positive pref- 3. The method of claim 1, wherein the set of potential erence indication regarding the first potential match at matches for the first user comprises one or more potential least by determining that the first user performed a first matches that are each associated with a geographic location swiping gesture associated with the graphical represen- within a threshold distance of a geographic location asso- tation of the first potential match on the graphical user ciated with the first user, the threshold distance being a interface; stored value. in response to determining that the first user expressed the 4. A non-transitory computer-readable medium compris- positive preference indication regarding the first poten- ing instructions that, when executed by a processor, are tial match, automatically causing the graphical user configured to: 10 interface to display a graphical representation of a electronically receive a plurality of user online-dating second potential match of the set of potential matches profiles, each profile comprising traits of a respective instead of the graphical representation of the first user and associated with a social networking platform; potential match; electronically receive a first request for matching, the first determining that the second user has expressed a positive 15 request electronically submitted by a first user using a preference indication regarding the first user after first electronic device; determining that the first user expressed the positive determine a set of potential matches from the plurality of preference indication regarding the first potential user online-dating profiles for the first user in response match; to receiving the first request; determining to enable communication between the first 20 cause the display of a graphical representation of a first user and the second user in response to determining that potential match of the set of potential matches to the both the first user has expressed the positive preference first user on a graphical user interface of the first indication regarding the second user and the second electronic device, the first potential match correspond- user has expressed the positive preference indication ing to a second user; regarding the first user; 25 determine that the first user expressed a positive prefer- in response to determining to enable communication ence indication regarding the first potential match at between the first user and the second user, causing the least by determining that the first user performed a first graphical user interface to display to the first user both swiping gesture associated with the graphical represen- the graphical representation of the first potential match; tation of the first potential match on the graphical user determining that the first user expressed a negative pref- 30 interface; erence indication regarding a second potential match of in response to the determination that the first user the set of potential matches at least by determining that expressed the positive preference indication regarding the first user performed a second swiping gesture the first potential match, automatically cause the associated with a graphical representation of the second graphical user interface to display a graphical repre- potential match on the graphical user interface, the 35 sentation of a second potential match of the set of second swiping gesture different than the first swiping potential matches instead of the graphical representa- gesture, the second potential match corresponding to a tion of the first potential match; third user; determine that the second user has expressed a positive determining to prevent communication between the first preference indication regarding the first user after user and the third user in response to determining that 40 determining that the first user expressed the positive both the first user has expressed the positive preference preference indication regarding the first potential indication regarding the second user and the second match; user has expressed the positive preference indication determine to enable communication between the first user regarding the first user; and the second user in response to the determination determining that the first user expressed a positive pref- 45 that both the first user has expressed the positive erence indication regarding a third potential match of preference indication regarding the second user and the the set of potential matches at least by determining that second user has expressed the positive preference indi- the first user performed the first swiping gesture asso- cation regarding the first user; ciated with a graphical representation of the third in response to the determination to enable communication potential match on the graphical user interface, the 50 between the first user and the second user, cause the third potential match corresponding to a fourth user; graphical user interface to display to the first user both and the graphical representation of the first potential match; determining to prevent communication between the first determine that the first user expressed a negative prefer- user and the fourth user in response to determining that ence indication regarding a second potential match of the fourth user has expressed a negative preference 55 the set of potential matches at least by determining that indication regarding the first user. the first user performed a second swiping gesture 2. The method of claim 1, further comprising: associated with a graphical representation of the second in response to determining that both the first user has potential match on the graphical user interface, the expressed the positive preference indication regarding second swiping gesture different than the first swiping the second user and the second user has expressed the 60 gesture, the second potential match corresponding to a positive preference indication regarding the first user, third user; causing the display of a graphical notification, on the determine to prevent communication between the first graphical user interface of the first electronic device, user and the third user in response to determining that that a match exists between the first user and the second both the first user has expressed the positive preference user, the graphical notification comprising a user inter- 65 indication regarding the second user and the second face control enabling the text area to be presented to the user has expressed the positive preference indication first user. regarding the first user; 21 US 9,733,811 B2 27 28 determine that the first user expressed a positive prefer- determine that the second user has expressed a positive ence indication regarding a third potential match of the preference indication regarding the first user after set of potential matches at least by determining that the determining that the first user expressed the positive first user performed the first swiping gesture associated preference indication regarding the first potential with a graphical representation of the third potential match; and match on the graphical user interface, the third poten- determine to enable communication between the first user tial match corresponding to a fourth user; and and the second user in response to the determination determine to prevent communication between the first that both the first user has expressed the positive user and the fourth user in response to determining that preference indication regarding the second user and the the fourth user has expressed a negative preference 10 second user has expressed the positive preference indi- indication regarding the first user. cation regarding the first user; 5. The medium of claim 4, further comprising instructions in response to the determination to enable communication configured to, in response to the determination that both the first user has expressed the positive preference indication between the first user and the second user, cause the regarding the second user and the second user has expressed 15 graphical user interface to display to the first user both the positiv~ preference indication regarding the first user, the graphical representation of the first potential match· determine that the first user expressed a negative prefer~ cause the display of a graphical notification, on the graphical user interface of the first electronic device that a match ence indication regarding a second potential match of exists between the first user and the, se~ond user, the the set of potential matches at least by determining that graphical notification comprising a user interface control 20 the first user performed a second swiping gesture enabling the text area to be presented to the first user. associated with a graphical representation of the second 6. The medium of claim 4, wherein the set of potential potential match on the graphical user interface, the matches for the first user comprises one or more potential second swiping gesture different than the first swiping matches that are each associated with a geographic location gesture, the second potential match corresponding to a within a threshold distance of a geographic location asso- 25 third user; ciated with the first user, the threshold distance being a determine to prevent communication between the first stored value. user and the third user in response to determining that 7. A system for profile matching, comprising: both the first user has expressed the positive preference an interface operable to: indication regarding the second user and the second electronically receive a plurality of user online-dating 30 user has expressed the positive preference indication profiles, each profile comprising traits of a respective regarding the first user; user ~d associated with a social networking platform; determine that the first user expressed a positive prefer- electromcally receive a plurality of user online-dating ence indication regarding a third potential match of the profiles, each profile comprising traits of a respective set of potential matches at least by determining that the user and associated with a social networking platform; 35 first user performed the first swiping gesture associated electronically receive a first request for matching, the first with a graphical representation of the third potential request electronically submitted by a first user using a match on the graphical user interface, the third poten- first electronic device; and tial match corresponding to a fourth user; and a processor coupled to the interface and operable to: determine to prevent communication between the first determine a set of potential matches from the plurality of 40 user and the fourth user in response to determining that user online-dating profiles for the first user in response the fourth user has expressed a negative preference to receiving the first request; indication regarding the first user. 8. The system of claim 7, the processor further operable cause the interface to display a graphical representation of a first potential match of the set of potential matches to to, in response to the determination that both the first user the first user on a graphical user interface of the first 45 has expressed the positive preference indication regarding ~lectronic device, the first potential match correspond- the second user and the second user has expressed the posit~ve preference indication regarding the first user, cause mg to a second user; ~he display of a graphical notification, on the graphical user determine that the interface has received a positive pref- erence indication from the first user regarding the first mterface of the first electronic device, that a match exists potential match at least by determining that the first 50 between the first user and the second user, the graphical user performed a first swiping gesture associated with notification comprising a user interface control enabling the the graphical representation of the first potential match text area to be presented to the first user. 9. The system of claim 7, wherein the set of potential on the graphical user interface; automatically cause the interface to remove the presen- matches for the first user comprises one or more potential tation of the first potential match from the graphical 55 matches that are each associated with a geographic location user interface in response to detecting the gesture and within a threshold distance of a geographic location asso- cause the interface to present, on the graphical user ciated with the first user, the threshold distance being a interface, a second potential match of the set of poten- stored value. tial matches to the first user; * * * * * 21 UNITED STATES PATENT AND TRADEMARK OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION PATENT NO.: 9,733,811 B2 Page 1 of 2 APPLICATION NO.: 14/059192 DATED: August 15, 2017 INVENTOR(S): Sean Rad et al. It is certified that error appears in the above-identified patent and that said Letters Patent is hereby corrected as shown below: In the Claims Column 25, Line 20, after "enable" insert --initial--. Column 25, Line 26, after "enable" insert --initial--. Column 25, Line 28, after second reference of "user", delete "both". Column 25, Line 31, after "regarding a", delete "second" and insert --third--. Column 25, Line 34, after "of the", delete "second" and insert --third--. Column 25, Line 37, after "the", delete "second" and insert --third--. Column 25, Line 39, delete "determining to prevent" and insert --preventing--. Column 25, Line 40, delete "in response to" and insert --after--. Column 25, Line 41, delete "both". Column 25, Line 41, delete "positive" and insert --negative--. Column 25, Line 42, after "the", delete "second user and the second". Column 25, Line 43, delete "user has expressed the positive preference indication". Column 25, Line 44, delete "regarding the first" and insert --third--. Column 25, Line 46, after "regarding a", delete "third" and insert --fourth--. Column 25, Line 49, after "representation of the", delete "third" and insert --fourth--. Column 25, Line 51, before "potential match", delete "third" and insert --fourth--. Column 25, Line 53, delete "determining to prevent" and insert --preventing--. Column 25, Line 54, delete "in response to" and insert --after--. Column 26, Line 43, after "enable" insert --initial--. Column 26, Line 49, after "enable" insert --initial--. Column 26, Line 51, after "first user", delete "both". Column 26, Line 54, after "regarding a", delete "second" and insert --third--. Column 26, Line 57, after "representation of the", delete "second" and insert --third--. Column 26, Line 60, after "the", delete "second" and insert --third--. Column 26, Line 62, delete "determine to". Column 26, Line 63, delete "in response to" and insert --after--. Column 26, Line 64, delete "both". Signed and Sealed this Twenty-first Day of November, 2017,,................... .... _ .~......· ·~ (:;....// Joseph Mata! Peiforming the Functions and Duties of the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office 21 CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION (continued) Page 2 of2 U.S. Pat. No. 9,733,811 B2 Column 26, Line 64, delete "positive" and insert --negative--. Column 26, Line 65, delete "second user and the second". Column 26, Line 66, delete "user has expressed the positive preference indication". Column 26, Line 67, delete "regarding the first" and insert --third--. Column 27, Line 2, delete "third" and insert --fourth--. Column 27, Line 5, delete "third" and insert --fourth--. Column 27, Line 6, delete "third" and insert --fourth--. Column 27, Line 8, delete "determine to". Column 27, Line 9, delete "in response to" and insert --after--. Column 27, Line 19, after "first user and the" delete",". Column 27, Line 33, delete "electronically receive a plurality of user online-dating". Column 27, Line 34, delete "profiles, each profile comprising traits of a respective". Column 27, Line 35, delete "user and associated with a social networking platform;". Column 28, Line 6, after "enable", insert --initial--. Column 28, Line 12, after "enable", insert --initial--. Column 28, Line 14, after "first user", delete "both". Column 28, Line 17, after "regarding a", delete "second" and insert --third--. Column 28, Line 20, after "representation of the", delete "second" and insert --third--. Column 28, Line 23, after "gesture, the", delete "second" and insert --third--. Column 28, Line 25, delete "determine to". Column 28, Line 26, delete "in response to" and insert --after--. Column 28, Line 27, delete "both". Column 28, Line 27, after "expressed the", delete "positive" and insert --negative--. Column 28, Line 28, delete "second user and the second". Column 28, Line 29, delete "user has expressed the positive preference indication". Column 28, Line 30, delete "regarding the first" and insert --third--. Column 28, Line 32, delete "third" and insert --fourth--. Column 28, Line 35, delete "third" and insert --fourth--. Column 28, Line 36, delete "third" and insert --fourth--. Column 28, Line 38, delete "determine to". Column 28, Line 39, delete "in response to" and insert --after--. Column 28, Line 50, after "control enabling", delete "the" and insert --a--. 21 Exhibit B 21 Illlll llllllll Ill lllll lllll lllll lllll lllll 111111111111111111111111111111111 US009959023B2 c12) United States Patent (IO) Patent No.: US 9,959,023 B2 Rad et al. (45) Date of Patent: May 1, 2018 (54) MATCHING PROCESS SYSTEM AND (2013.01); G06Q 10110 (2013.01); G06Q METHOD 30102 (2013.01); G06Q 50101 (2013.01); G06Q 50110 (2013.01) (71) Applicant: Tinder, Inc., West Hollywood, CA (US) (58) Field of Classification Search CPC ............. H04L 67/306; G06F 17/30011; G06F (72) Inventors: Sean Rad, Los Angeles, CA (US); 17/3053 Jonathan Badeen, North Hollywood, CA (US) See application file for complete search history. (73) Assignee: Match.Com, L.L.C., Dallas, TX (US) (56) References Cited U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS (*) Notice: Subject to any disclaimer, the term ofthis patent is extended or adjusted under 35 6,480,885 Bl 11/2002 Olivier U.S.C. 154(b) by 0 days. days. 7,203,674 B2 * 4/2007 Cohen .................... G06Q 10/02 7071999 .003 (21) Appl. No.: 15/016,662 (Continued) (22) Filed: Feb. 5, 2016 OTHER PUBLICATIONS (65) Prior Publication Data Chegg® Blog, Chegg® Product Updates, "Introducing the Chegg US 2016/0154569 Al Jun. 2, 2016 Flashcards App," http://blog.chegg.com/2012/02/03/introducind- the-chegg-flashcards-app/, 10 pages, Dated Feb. 3, 2012 Printed Related U.S. Application Data Feb. 5, 2016. (63) Continuation of application No. 14/059,192, filed on (Continued) Oct. 21, 2013, now Pat. No. 9,733,811, which is a (Continued) Primary Examiner - Carol Choi (74) Attorney, Agent, or Firm - Baker Botts, L.L.P. (51) Int. Cl. G06F 17130 (2006.01) (57) ABSTRACT G06F 310484 (2013.01) A method for profile matching includes receiving a plurality G06Q 10110 (2012.01) of user profiles, each user profile comprising traits of a G06Q 30102 (2012.01) respective user. The method includes receiving a preference G06Q 50110 (2012.01) indication for a first user profile of the plurality of user G06Q 50100 (2012.01) profiles. The method also includes determining a potential G06F 310482 (2013.01) match user profile of the plurality of user profiles based on G06F 310488 (2013.01) the preference indication for the first user profile. The (52) U.S. Cl. method also includes presenting the potential match user CPC ........ G06F 3104842 (2013.01); G06F 310482 profile to a second user. (2013.01); G06F 310488 (2013.01); G06F 17130554 (2013.01); G06F 17130657 6 Claims, 11 Drawing Sheets =,.....--10 tinder 21 US 9,959,023 B2 Page 2 Related U.S. Application Data 2008/0294624 Al 11/2008 Kanigsberg et al. 2008/0301118 Al 12/2008 Chien et al. continuation-in-part of application No. 12/339,301, 200910106040 Al 412009 Jones filed on Dec. 19, 2008, now Pat. No. 8,566,327. 2011/0087974 Al * 4/2011 Kulas .................. G06F 3/04812 715/760 (60) Provisional application No. 61/793,866, filed on Mar. 2013/0179925 Al* 7/2013 Woods H04N 21142209 15, 2013. 725142 2014/0040368 Al* 212014 Janssens ............... H04L 67/306 (56) References Cited 709/204 2014/0074824 Al 3/2014 Rad et al. U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS 2014/0162241 Al* 612014 Morgia G06Q 30/02 434/362 7,401,098 B2 *7/2008 Baker ................. H04L 12/1818 7071999 .006 OTHER PUBLICATIONS 7,917,448 B2 3/2011 Smola et al. 8,060,463 Bl 1112011 Spiegel PCT Notification of Transmittal of the International Search Report 8,566,327 B2 10/2013 Carrico et al. 9,009,109 B2 * 412015 Tan ................... G06F 17/30699 and the Written Opinion of the International Searching Authority, or 705/26.l the Declaration with attached PCT International Search Report and 2005/0021750 Al 112005 Abrams Written Opinion of the International Searching Authority in Inter- 2006/0059147 Al 3/2006 Weiss et al. national Application No. PCT/US 08/87706, dated Feb. 10, 2009, 8 2006/0085419 Al 412006 Rosen 200610106780 Al 512006 Dagan pages. 2007/0073687 Al 3/2007 Terrill et al. 2007/0073803 Al 3/2007 Terrill et al. * cited by examiner 21 U.S. Patent May 1, 2018 Sheet 1 of 11 US 9,959,023 B2 100 r' MATCHING SEHVER </;> 20 0 20, ._. _., . . ._.,., . .,.,.,.,. .,. . .,.,.,.,.,.,.,., . . .,. ._. .,.,._. . _. . . _. .,.,. . ., .,.,. .,. . . .,. i!:~~. . . .,.,., ._. ~.,. u ................ .,..,,.""'..., .. ..,,..,....._., 10:.;,............. ~:--":'"'"'.':>~.. ~'"·~-:..: .........................7................. .,,. .......:·-'""" .. . ~''"'"""-'"'""'"'"""" 1 DISPL~i.J. .. C [........."i'NrERFP:c'E--]· ---~ .F7CJ. JB '.' ......................... __ fcP-~,''·28 " 0 <> FIG, JC 21 U.S. Patent May 1, 2018 Sheet 2 of 11 US 9,959,023 B2 - - -... - ·.:~ ~.. ·~----·---~- .. "~:·····~t""""h ......................... '>....................,...,......:-.. ~"'"'''"''''' . NAME oa PROPERTY 1 ' PROPEHTY 2 o o o I. Jane Doe/" 3 1 Jane Roe-r30b 30 J~n~ Boe ...r 30c 0 0 <:.,Jarn, Loe ---...._ d 1,, . Jane Snoe--...,. 0 "'0 30 308 FIG. JD SEARCH RESULTS r ~-~--'""""''"""'"""""""""""""'""""'--~·"'"""·""w---.-------·------·--·-•• 1. Jane Dcc/31a ~-33 ~,,,,,J,../. 34 31~ 2.JanoRoaI31b R. r 3 3 1· 3. Jane Boe:-.., 1 ·• 0 "·i,j ..... 1c ii'"'"B~". .... li ~'""' View -., 33 " Q See More F7G. JE -------------···--···--·----·"'-""""'-------·'~"·"''''''""'""""'""""'"-'-·-""""'""'"'"''''·"""""" ......1,1'.::I:~ ..·,Jane Doe /i(~'i;i <<!)\\ '["""~'""·"·•·•·•·•-•·•·'·""'-"""""·,·· _... 35, 1. 1 ·~- ') '\\ if l'1.<···:,_.;1 • i Contact,.-· "' 1 1,,1~~k"i. ~ . f"'"71 !L~.f'-·:36 [___J__\,t~ _:_l,.........11 Born: 10/01/75 Hometown: Dallas, 1X Likes: C!1ocolate, rollerb!ading Dislikes: Body odor. arrogance, foott)all FICi. 1.F 21 U.S. Patent May 1, 2018 Sheet 3of11 US 9,959,023 B2 I l Hl\RRY'S SEARCH RESULTS rFIG. 2 i 2b·"'/W' I .ff'.'.'.'.',W.W,,.'X«««><'°'"°"'.t •''' Jane Doe !ii~~Oo;>OO<"'"<'~ Recommend U t rR:.;~~-.;~·.,·';·;j·~.ci···. U >f,,,>f',/ 37 l '~. . 31 l Jane Boe Jarw Loe. ~~ g-::'-·-·-·-·-·-·-·.:--•::O.•.:-.•.•:O-'"::*.-:-~~''""~~ l f-lecommend I '' 12 21 U.S. Patent May 1, 2018 Sheet 4of11 US 9,959,023 B2 21 U.S. Patent May 1, 2018 Sheet 5 of 11 US 9,959,023 B2. .....,..,.,... i 0 = tinder I (~)Q)(~);.~ ..........•..,.............................................,........................ ................" .......,,...................... ~ @) Ff(}. 7 .•. /-10 = = tinder tinder .r92 ~~) ·(i~ '~p '-~~ '-··+/ /(;}\ ---94 ••-.;>-~>OH•••?••···--·····'"-"•"-"-'-"-"'-'-"-'-'-''- ........ ._._................................................. (~) ·~.,._........,.,..,.,,....~..,..._.,.~h•u••"''""''-•>•>•»•••••''-"''- ............. / (~) FIG. 8 .F"JG. 9 21 U.S. Patent May 1, 2018 Sheet 6of11 US 9,959,023 B2,.,.,,-1002. GENERATE USER POOL i /.,,.., 1004 DISPLAY USER POOL i r" 1006 RECEIVE USER PREFERENCE t .---~-~·.)~~~1014 STORE FIRST ALLOW COMMUNICATION USER'S PREFERENCE J --1016 ~ ......."..............................................l'...............,......... DO NOT ALLOW COMMUNICATION FIG. 10 21 U.S. Patent May 1, 2018 Sheet 7of11 US 9,959,023 B2 /"'"'1102 RECEIVE PAIR OF USER IDENTIFIERS / ___/_, . .,. """'-..,~.,...1104 OK ./"_.,.•.-. VALIDATE "''~ NO ______ r·' ALLOW r1106 MATCH? . m•L!Q.~ DO NOT ALLOW COMMUNICATION COMMUNICATION 21 U.S. Patent May 1, 2018 Sheet 8of11 US 9,959,023 B2 ~ Sent Matches ........................................ ·-------~--~---·~---------·---·---------------------,......................_................. "'---··------------"'·-------............,.......... .... ..,. .__. .................. '1204· FJ(J. 12A 21 U.S. Patent May 1, 2018 Sheet 9of11 US 9,959,023 B2 ~ Sent Matches r~_. ................................................. m ......................................................,, ···--· 1204 ~Q Searc~ ____) FIG. 128 21 U.S. Patent May 1, 2018 Sheet 10 of 11 US 9,959,023 B2 ~ Sent Matches 1206- Jonathan Mary Major Make a Match! Smith .,.<~ "''""w--ccc.;,.;,.""'""'''""'"''"''") 1204·- (~ Searctl ........... ~, ____._....,,,•..r 1202·"-. _FIG. I2C' 21 U.S. Patent May 1, 2018 Sheet 11 of 11 US 9,959,023 B2 ............................................. ~~-------- ............................................-.---·--·--·----·--·······""""""""""".·.·.-·.. ·· '···---"'-"~~-~-----~.......................~·~""-""1 I FIG. 12D 21 US 9,959,023 B2 1 2 MATCHING PROCESS SYSTEM AND ti on. If the users with the most attractive profiles cease to use METHOD the system, the quality of the user pool deteriorates. RELATED APPLICATIONS SUMMARY This application is a continuation application of U.S. In one embodiment, a method for profile matching com- patent application Ser. No. 14/059,192, entitled "MATCH- prises receiving a plurality of user profiles, each user profile ING PROCESS SYSTEM AND METHOD," filed Oct. 21, comprising traits of a respective user. It also comprises 2013, currently pending; which (a) is a continuation-in-part receiving a preference indication for a first user profile of the of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 12/339,301, entitled 10 plurality of user profiles. It further comprises determining a "MATCHING PROCESS SYSTEM AND METHOD," filed potential match user profile of the plurality of user profiles Dec. 19, 2008, now U.S. Pat. No. 8,566,327, issued Oct. 22, based on the preference indication for the first user profile. 2013; and (b) claims benefit under 35 U.S.C. § 119(e) to The method also comprises presenting the potential match U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 61/793,866, entitled user profile to a second user. "SOCIAL MATCHING SYSTEM AND METHOD," filed 15 Receiving a preference indication for a first user profile Mar. 15, 2013. may include receiving from a third user a recommendation of the first user profile for the second user. It may also TECHNICAL FIELD include receiving from the second user a preference indica- tion for the first user profile. The method may further include This invention relates generally to computer matching 20 determining a score of a third user profile of the plurality of systems and more particularly to a matching process system user profiles as a potential match for the second user. It may and method. also include altering the score of the third user profile based on the preference indication for the first user profile. BACKGROUND In another embodiment, a method for profile matching 25 comprises receiving a plurality of user profiles, each user Networking architectures have grown increasingly com- profile comprising traits of a respective user. The method plex in communications environments. In recent years, a further comprises receiving a request for matches from a series of protocols and configurations have been developed first user, the first user associated with a first user profile. in order to accommodate a diverse group of end users having The method also comprises scoring the plurality of user various networking needs. Many of these architectures have 30 profiles for potential matching with the first user based on gained significant notoriety because they can offer the comparisons of the plurality of user profiles with the first benefits of automation, convenience, management, and user profile. It also comprises identifying a second user enhanced consumer selections. profile of the plurality of user profiles as a potential match Certain network protocols may be used in order to allow for the first user based on the scoring. The method further an end user to conduct an on-line search of candidates to fill 35 comprises identifying commonality between a third user a given vacancy. These protocols may relate to job searches, profile of the plurality of user profiles and the second user person finding services, real estate searches, or on-line profile. In addition, the method comprises presenting to the dating. While some believe that on-line dating is simply a first user the third user profile as a potential match for the matter of matching supply and demand, there is statistical first user. and empirical evidence to suggest that successful on-line 40 Depending on the specific features implemented, particu- dating entails far more. lar embodiments may exhibit some, none, or all of the For example, people having similar and/or compatible following technical advantages. Various embodiments may character traits and values should be matched together. be capable of dynamically updating match search results However, effectively linking two participants together can based on user activity. Some embodiments may be capable prove to be a challenging endeavor. Coordinating a relation- 45 of enhancing match search results by reducing the impact of ship between two like-minded individuals can be a signifi- restrictive user preferences. In addition, some embodiments cant chore, as there are a number of obstacles and barriers may provide the ability to evaluate the attractiveness of that must be overcome. potential matches. Various embodiments may be capable of One problem that has arisen is that matching services are importing user profiles from other social-networking sys- limited to searching for matches only within their own 50 terns. Some embodiments may be capable of generating the platform. Thus, only people who have gone through the pool of users based on both explicit and implicit criteria process of signing up for the service are searched for a derived from other social networking systems. Other tech- match. One solution to this problem is to have users register nical advantages will be readily apparent to one skilled in the in multiple services. This is problematic because it can be art from the following figures, description and claims. expensive and time consuming for users. Further, the user 55 must then visit all of the services to monitor the search BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS progress: this inefficiency may cause users to give up on the search process. Reference is now made to the following description taken Another problem is that the search results of these ser- in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein vices contain many irrelevant entities to the searcher. This 60 like reference numbers represent like parts, and which: costs the user of the service time and may deter them from FIG. lA is an overview of one embodiment of the continuing through all of the search results. matching system; Another problem is that large numbers of unwanted FIG. lB shows the contents of the terminal from FIG. lA; communication requests can become a nuisance to the user. FIG. lC shows the contents of the matching server from Too many nuisance requests may deter the user from further 65 FIG. lA; use of the system. Users with the most attractive profiles are FIG. lD is a diagram of a database from FIG. lC showing oftentimes the ones that receive the most unwanted atten- one embodiment of how a matching server stores a pool; 21 US 9,959,023 B2 3 4 FIG. lE is a diagram of the display from FIG. lB showing In one embodiment, terminal 10 represents (and is inclu- one embodiment of the presentation of search results to a sive of) a personal computer that may be used to access user; network 24. Alternatively, terminal 10 may be representative FIG. lF is a diagram of the display from FIG. 1B showing of a cellular telephone, an electronic notebook, a laptop, a one embodiment of the presentation of details of a match personal digital assistant (PDA), or any other suitable device result entity to a user; (wireless or otherwise: some of which can perform web FIG. 2 is a diagram depicting how a user may recommend browsing), component, or element capable of accessing one an entity to another user, in accordance with a particular or more elements within system 100. Interface 16, which embodiment; may be provided in conjunction with the items listed above, FIG. 3 is a diagram of the display from FIG. lB depicting 10 may further comprise any suitable interface for a human user how the user may be made aware of fate characteristics the such as a video camera, a microphone, a keyboard, a mouse, user shares with a match result entity, in accordance with a or any other appropriate equipment according to particular particular embodiment; configurations and arrangements. In addition, interface 16 FIG. 4 is a diagram depicting how two platforms may be may be a unique element designed specifically for commu- searched for a match, in accordance with a particular 15 nications involving system 100. Such an element may be embodiment; fabricated or produced specifically for matching applica- FIG. 5 is a flow chart indicating how a result list may be tions involving a user. generated, in accordance with a particular embodiment; Display 12, in one embodiment, is a computer monitor. FIG. 6 shows one embodiment of the matching system Alternatively, display 12 may be a projector, speaker, or displaying to a user the profile information of a second user; 20 other device that allows user 14 to appreciate information FIG. 7 is a diagram of the display from FIG. 6 showing that system 100 transmits. the effect of a left swipe gesture; Network 24 is a communicative platform operable to FIG. 8 is a diagram of the display from FIG. 6 showing exchange data or information emanating from user 14. the effect of a right swipe gesture; Network 24 could be a plain old telephone system (POTS). FIG. 9 shows the matching system displaying a match of 25 Transmission of information emanating from the user may a first user and a second user, in accordance with a particular be assisted by management associated with matching server embodiment; 20 or manually keyed into a telephone or other suitable FIG. 10 is a flowchart depicting a method for enabling electronic equipment. In other embodiments, network 24 communication between two users of the matching system could be any packet data network offering a communications of FIG. 1 based on a mutual expression of approval, in 30 interface or exchange between any two nodes in system 100. accordance with a particular embodiment; Network 24 may alternatively be any local area network FIG. 11 is a flowchart depicting a method for enabling (LAN), metropolitan area network (MAN), wide area net- communication between two users of the matching system work (WAN), wireless local area network (WLAN), virtual of FIG. 1 based on a user suggested matching proposal, in private network (VPN), intranet, or any other appropriate accordance with a particular embodiment; and 35 architecture or system that facilitates communications in a FIGS. 12A-D depict embodiments of a user interface. network or telephonic environment, including a combination of any networks or systems described above. In various DETAILED DESCRIPTION embodiments, network connections 22 may include, but are not limited to, wired and/or wireless mediums which may be Referring to FIG. lA, one embodiment of a matching 40 provisioned with routers and firewalls. system is shown. FIG. lA is a simplified block diagram of Matching server 20 is operable to receive and to commu- a system 100 for facilitating an on-line dating scenario in a nicate information to terminal 10. In some embodiments, network environment. In other embodiments, system 100 matching server 20 may comprise a plurality of servers or can be leveraged to identify and to evaluate suitable candi- other equipment, each performing different or the same dates in other areas (e.g. hiring/employment, recruiting, real 45 functions in order to receive and communicate information estate, general person searches, etc.). Users 14 interact with to terminal 10. Matching server 20 may include software a matching server 20 through terminals 10. FIG. lB is a and/or algorithms to achieve the operations for processing, diagram showing, in one embodiment, the contents of ter- communicating, delivering, gathering, uploading, maintain- minal 10. Terminal 10 comprises interface 16 (so that user ing, and/or generally managing data, as described herein. 14 may be able to interact with terminal 10) and display 12. 50 Alternatively, such operations and techniques may be FIG. lC is a diagram showing, in one embodiment, the achieved by any suitable hardware, component, device, contents of matching server 20. Matching server 20 com- application specific integrated circuit (ASIC), additional prises memory 26 and at least one CPU 28. Memory 26 may software, field programmable gate array (FPGA), server, store multiple databases, such as databases 26a and 26b. processor, algorithm, erasable programmable ROM Terminal 10 and matching server 20 are communicatively 55 (EPROM), electrically erasable programmable ROM (EE- coupled via network connections 22 and network 24. PROM), or any other suitable object that is operable to Users 14 are clients, customers, prospective customers, or facilitate such operations. entities wishing to participate in an on-line dating scenario In some embodiments, user 14, using terminal 10, regis- and/or to view information associated with other participants ters with matching server 20. Registration may include user in the system. Users 14 may also seek to access or to initiate 60 14 submitting information to matching server 20 about user a communication with other users that may be delivered via 14 as well as characteristics user 14 is seeking to be matched network 24. Users 14 may review data (such as profiles, for with. Such information may include a user handle, which example) associated with other users in order to make may be a combination of characters that uniquely identifies matching decisions or elections. Data, as used herein, refers user 14 to matching server 20. In various embodiments, to any type of numeric, voice, video, text, or script data, or 65 matching server 20 may be configured to collect this infor- any other suitable information in any appropriate format that mation; for example, matching server 20 may be configured may be communicated from one point to another. to ask user 14 to respond to a series of questions. Matching 21 US 9,959,023 B2 5 6 server 20 may be configured to receive the information matching server 20 provides for user 14 is shown. Using submitted by user 14 and create a profile for user 14 based display 12, user 14 views an entity from result list 31. on that information, storing the profile in memory 26. Matching server 20 may also provide user 14 with the ability As an example only, consider a case where user 14 is to contact the entity through a contact button 35. In one interested in participating in an on-line dating scenario. User embodiment, when contact button 35 is utilized by user 14, 14 can access the Internet via terminal 10, travel to a web matching server 20 may provide user 14 with contact site managed by matching server 20, and begin the regis- information of the entity such as a telephone number or an tration process. As part of the registration process, matching e-mail address; in another embodiment, matching server 20 server 20 may ask user 14 a series of questions which may provide user 14 with a way to directly contact the entity, identifies characteristics about user 14. Thus, matching 10 such as sending a message or providing voice or video server 20 may ask about the height, weight, age, location, communication between user 14 and the entity. Even further, and ethnicity ofuser 14. It may also ask about the birthplace, matching server 20 may be configured to allow user 14 to parents, eating habits, activities, and goals of user 14. express a negative preference for the entity through dislike Matching server 20 may further use the registration process button 36. In one embodiment, when, for example, dislike to discover what user 14 may be looking for in a match, such 15 button 36 is utilized by user 14, matching server 20 may as age, weight, height, location, ethnicity, diet, education, remove the entity from result list 31; in another embodiment, etc. Further, matching server 20 may ask user 14 to indicate the entity may be removed from pool 30 of users from which how important certain factors are when looking for a match. matches are identified. For example, matching server 20 may allow the user to As an example only, consider that user 14 has submitted indicate which characteristics in a potential match are a 20 a search request to matching server 20. Matching server 20 necessity. In another example, matching server 20 may ask, may search through pool 30, identify results, and commu- "How important is it that your match does not smoke?" nicate result list 31 to user 14 which would contain other Matching server 20 may also allow the user to indicate that users for whom matching server 20 had created a profile and certain characteristics are not important search criteria. For who were identified through a search and selection process. example, when asking user 14 about what height or weight 25 Next, user 14 may be interested in learning more about Jane user 14 is seeking in a match, matching server 20 may be Doe, entity 31a; thus, user 14 would click view button 33 configured to receive "not important" as a response. In yet associated with Jane Doe. Matching server 20 would receive another example, matching server 20 may allow user 14 to this request and respond by displaying Jane Doe's profile rate which factors are important on a numerical scale. For (stored in memory 26), as depicted in FIG. lF. Next, after example, matching server 20 may ask user 14 the following: 30 reading the profile, user 14 may be interested in contacting "On a scale of 1-10, how important is it that your match has Jane Doe; hence, user 14 would click contact button 35. the same education level as you?" In some embodiments, Matching server 20 would respond by allowing user 14 enter matching server 20 may specify that any number of ques- a message that matching server 20 would then communicate tions or requested descriptions are necessary before regis- to Jane Doe. tration may be concluded. As an example only, matching 35 Matching server 20 may even further be configured to server 20 may require that user 14 communicate the sex of allow user 14 to store a match result entity; in one embodi- user 14 and the sex user 14 prefers to be matched with. After ment, the system may be configured to allow user 14 to concluding the registration process, matching server 20 may utilize favorite button 34 that will add the desired match store the responses of user 14 as a profile. This same process result entity into another list. In another embodiment, uti- may be repeated by several different users 14, causing 40 lizing favorite button 34 will remove the associated match matching server 20 to contain a plurality of profiles. result entity from result list 31. FIG. lD depicts an embodiment in which matching server As an example only, user 14 may decide that he would 20 has a database 26a which contains a pool 30. Each entry like to save Jane Doe's profile so that he can review it later. in database 26a has a pool entity 30a along with information User 14 may click favorite button 34, and matching server concerning that entity. In one embodiment, each pool entity 45 20 may respond by placing Jane Doe's profile into a separate 30a-e represents a user and their profile. In some embodi- list. Further, matching server 20 may also remove Jane Doe ments, not all registered users are in pool 30. As discussed from user's 14 result list 31. As a result, user 14 may see further below, matching server 20 may use a selection another match result entity populate result list 31. This is process for including stored profiles in pool 30. As depicted beneficial because it may focus user 14 on evaluating new in FIG. lD, in this embodiment, the collection of users and 50 entities rather than reevaluating previously-known entities profiles forms pool 30 through which matching server 20 because the entities still appear in result list 31. may perform various functions such as searches for matches. In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- Matching server 20 may be configured to search through figured to generate pool 30 by default according to various pool 30 and present matches to user 14. In FIG. lE, one characteristics and preferences of user 14 and other users of embodiment of this presentation is depicted as occurring 55 the system. Matching server 20 may also restrict entities through display 12. In various embodiments, matches may from being included in pool 30 based on the status of the be presented to user 14 utilizing other communication profile, or if user 14 has rejected or blocked an entity. schemes, such as electronic messages (i.e., e-mail) or text Matching server 20 may also restrict entities from the pool messages (i.e., utilizing SMS). In the depicted embodiment, that have blocked or rejected user 14. For example, match- a result list 31 is presented to user 14. A match result entity 60 ing server 20 may not allow profiles that are not in good 31a in a result list 31 may be associated with a view button standing to be included in pool 30. In other embodiments, 33. Using interface 16, user 14 may request that matching matching server 20 may be configured to generate pool 30 server 20 provide more information about an entity in result by first choosing seeds. Seeds include, but are not limited to, list 31 by pressing the associated view button 33. Matching profiles that user 14 has sent a message to or profiles that server 20 may then communicate to user 14 more informa- 65 user 14 has expressed a preference for. Each seed is then tion about that entity by retrieving the information from compared to other entities to determine which entities will memory 26. In FIG. lF, one embodiment of information that be included in pool 30. Any suitable method can be used to 21 US 9,959,023 B2 7 8 determine which entitles are included in pool 30. For Lucy's (whose commonality score was less than the thresh- example, any characteristics or algorithms described herein old score). Thus, user 14 gets the benefit of having more may form the basis of such a determination. As another entities identified that may be good matches. example, a commonality score may be generated based on In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- the comparison between each entity and the seed. In some figured to include behavioral scales. These may include embodiments, this commonality score can be a measure of multi-item scales for materialism and gender-role tradition- how physically similar the users are to each other. This score alism. Such scales may provide the advantage of improved may be generated based on the number of users that have matching through deeper appreciation for the personality of expressed a positive preference for both the seed and the entities in the system. entity being compared. This score may also be generated 10 In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- based on whether the seed and entity have been viewed figured to analyze profile text for categories. It may search together in one session; further, the more times the seed and for a number of text strings and then associate the profile entity have been viewed together, the larger the common- ality score. The law of large numbers may allow for a vast:-"ith any number of categories. As an example only, match- amount of such commonalities to be established over a few 15 mg server 20 may add any profile to the Cat category whose days. Testing has revealed that using such commonality text contains any of the following strings: "cat" "cats" "cat." "cats." "cat," "cats," scoring methods has yielded at least one physical match for 80% of users whose profile has been viewed at least once Matching server 20 may be configured to make it more and between 6 and 1000 physical matches for 60% of user~ likely that a profile will be in a result list if categories whose profile has been viewed at least once. Matching 20 associated with the profile are also categories found in the server 20 may be further configured to allow entities that user's profile who submitted the search request. have a commonality score above a certain threshold to Matching server 20 may be configured to analyze one or become a part of pool 30. Matching server 20 may further more portions of the text of an entity's profile and generate be configured to update pool 30. In some embodiments, a readability score that may be used in various ways, such matching server 20 may do so by creating new seed entities 25 as in the process of searching for matches for user 14. In based on activity by user 14, such as indicating a preference some embodiments, matching server 20 may analyze factors for that entity. Further, matching server 20 may then com- such as, but not limited to: average number of words per pare the chosen seed entity with other profiles stored in sentence, total number of words with greater than three matching server 20 and determine whether those profiles syllables, and total number of words in the profile. Matching will be included in pool 30 using a threshold score as 30 server 20 may also concatenate all of the collected responses described above. At least one advantage realized by this with a single space between them. It may further break the embodiment is that user 14 is presented with updated text into sentences, words, and syllables. From these statis- potential matches which increases the likelihood of user 14 tics, matching server 20 may also be configured to generate finding a suitable match. Another advantage present in a readability score by, in one embodiment, taking the aver- certain embodiments is that these updated potential matches 35 age of the Flesch Kincaid Reading Ease test, the Flesch have a greater likelihood of compatibility with user 14 since Kincaid Grade Level test, and the Gunning Fox score. Other they are chosen based on their commonality with entities embodiments may utilize any other combination of these or user 14 has expressed a preference for. other tests to determine a readability score. In some embodi- As an example only, consider the case in which user 14 ments, analyses may be used to determine the IQ of an has registered, requested a search, and received from match- 40 entity, the grade level of the writing, or how nervous the ing server 20 results list 31. Then, user 14 decides to contact entity generally is. An advantage of this embodiment may be Jane Doe and presses contact button 35. Aside from provid- that the system provides user 14 with a metric for determin- ing user 14 with the ability to contact Jane Doe, matching ing approximate intelligence of other users. The readability server 20 will designate Jane Doe's profile as a seed. score may be used, for example, in the matching process to Matching server 20 will then compare Jane Doe's profile to 45 identify potential matches. other profiles stored in memory 26 in order to identify other As an example only, the Flesch Kincaid Reading Ease users who may be similar to Jane Doe and thus be a good score may be generated by first computing the following match for user 14. In this example, matching server 20 will intermediate score: generate a commonality score for each of these comparisons 206.835-(1.015*[Average Words per Sentence])- and compare these scores to a preset threshold. If the 50 (84.6*[Average Syllables per Word]) commonality score is lower than the threshold, that profile will not be added to pool 30. However, if the commonality Then, the Flesch Kincaid Reading Ease score is determined score is higher than the threshold, matching server 20 will by using the following table: add this profile to pool 30. As an example, further assume that the se~d, Jane Doe, is being compared to another entity, 55 Susan Smith. Based on the fact that both Susan and Jane Intermediate Flesh Kincaid Score Condition Reading Ease Score have three users (Tom, Dick, and Harry) who have expressed a positive preference for their profiles, matching server 20 <100 4 generates a commonality score of 100 for the comparison. In <91 <81 contrast, matching server 20 generated a commonality score 60 <71 7 of 50 for the comparison between the seed (Jane Doe) and <66 yet another entity, Lucy Goosey. This was because only one <61 9 user (Bob) had indicated a positive preference toward both <51 10 <31 13 Lucy and Jane. Continuing the example, matching server 20 <O 14 is using a commonality threshold score of 70, which results 65 Else 15 in including Susan's profile (whose commonality score was greater than the threshold score) in pool 30 and excluding 21 US 9,959,023 B2 9 10 The Flesch Kincaid Grade Level may be computed accord- Sally have in common, the more likely it will be that ing to the following: matching server 20 will include Sally's profile in Harry's (0.39*[Average Words Per Sentence])+(ll.8*[Aver- result list 31. age Syllables Per Word])-15.59 In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- The Gunning Fox score may be computed according to the figured to impute a level of physical attractiveness to an following: entity in pool 30. Matching server 20 may be configured to monitor how frequent an entity in pool 30 has been viewed ([Average Words Per Sentence]+(([Nurnber Of as well as how many times that entity has been part of a Words With More Than 3 Syllables ]/[Number of Words In Entire Text])+l00))*0.4 result list in order to impute the level of physical attractive- lO ness. Matching server 20 may further be configured to As indicated, any suitable tests may be utilized m any generate a score based on this data. Further, in some suitable manner to determine a readability score. embodiments, matching server 20 may impute physical In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- figured to allow a user to interact with the result list of attractiveness to an entity based on the imputed physical another user. Matching server 20 may be configured to allow 15 attractiveness scores of other entities. Matching server 20 a user to express a preference for entities within a result list may compute an average of the imputed physical attractive- of another user, and to indicate to the other user of this ness scores of the other entities weighted by the common- preference. Thus, a user may be able to get advice from a ality score between each of the other entities and the present friend regarding what other users may constitute good entity. Empirical data indicates that people are more likely matches for the user and thus be able to find a better match. 20 to match with people of similar attractiveness. Thus, in many As an example only, consider FIG. lA and FIG. 2. Two embodiments, a user may obtain an advantage in that they users 14, Harry and Sally, are connected to matching server are able to be presented with potential matches that, accord- 20 via terminals 10. Display 12a is used by Harry while ing to one measurement, are as attractive as the user. display 12b is used by Sally. Matching server 20 allows As an example only, consider a registered user, Sally, Sally to view Harry's result list 31 on her terminal in display 25 whose profile was created by matching server 20 in January. l2b. By pressing recommend button 37, Sally may indicate Since that time, matching server 20 has recorded the number a preference for one or more of the entities in result list 31. of times Sally's profile has appeared in any user's result list Assume Sally presses recommend button 37 associated with 31; assume that this has occurred 10 times. Further, match- Jane Loe. After doing so, matching server 20 will notify ing server 20 has also recorded the number of times a user Harry of Sally's preference. On Harry's display 12a, match- 30 has viewed Sally's profile by clicking view button 33 ing server 20 will cause notification 39 to appear, associating associated with Sally's profile; assume that this has hap- it with Jane Loe. Notification 39 will indicate to Harry that pened 5 times. In this manner, matching server 20 has Sally has recommended Jane Loe as a potential match. Harry constructed a ratio that represents the imputed physical may find Sally's preference helpful in determining which attractiveness of Sally's profile. Still further, assume that entities he should pursue further if, for example, he believes 35 Harry, a registered user, now submits a query. Matching Sally understands the type of person he is looking for. server 20 has evaluated the imputed physical attractiveness In one embodiment, matching server 20 may be config- ratio of Harry's profile. When evaluating Sally's profile for ured to analyze the profiles of both user 14 and the entities inclusion in result list 31 returned to Harry, matching server in pool 30 for keywords. Matching server 20 may be 20 will compare the imputed physical attractiveness of configured to search through the profile of user 14 for 40 Sally's profile and Harry's profile. The more similar the keywords that relate to things such as activities and interests. ratios associated with Harry and Sally's profiles are to each Matching server 20 may generate a score for each entity in other, the more likely it is that Sally's profile will be selected pool 30 based on a comparison between the list of keywords by matching server 20 to be in Harry's result list 31. In found in user's 14 profile and a similarly-generated list of another example, assume that Sally's profile has not been keywords of each entity in pool 30. In one embodiment, this 45 registered long enough to generate a meaningful imputed is accomplished by storing a list of words in memory 26, and physical attractiveness ratio. Matching server 20 may then using it to identify keywords in the searched profiles. In generate an imputed physical attractiveness score based on some embodiments, identified keywords may be used as a entities that Sally does have commonality scores with. This means of weighting various scores. As an example only, a computed average may be weighted by the strength of the profile that contains the word "God" may be weighted much 50 commonality score between Sally and each entity with differently than a profile which has merely indicated that whom she has a commonality score. Continuing the their religious preference is Christian. In various embodi- example, assume that Sally has a commonality score of 5 ments, this may provide an advantage to user 14 in that user with Lucy and 10 with Julia. When matching server 20 14 is able to determine how similar he/she is with a potential computes the Sally's average, it will give twice as much match. In addition, the keyword analysis may be used by the 55 weight to Julia's imputed physical attractiveness score than system when searching and identifying matches for a user. to Lucy's. As an example only, consider two registered users, Harry In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- and Sally, both of whom have profiles stored in matching figured to make an entity in result list 31 more appealing to server 20. Matching server 20 then analyzes each of these user 14 by pointing out coincidences in the profile data that profiles by comparing it to a list of predefined keywords. 60 give user 14 a sense of fate with the entity. In one embodi- Matching server 20 then associates each word that matched ment, matching server 20 may be configured to search for the list of keywords with each profile. Now assume that similar initials, birthplaces, birth dates, birth month, birth Harry performs a search. While fulfilling Harry's query, year, university, first names, last names, user handles, paren- matching server 20 evaluates Sally's profile for inclusion in tal occupations, and keywords to identify users who may Harry's result list 31. This evaluation includes comparing 65 give another user a sense of fate. In other embodiments, the list of keywords found in Harry's profile to the keywords matching server 20 may use the fate characteristics as a found in Sally's profile. The more keywords that Harry and metric in the matching process. 21 US 9,959,023 B2 11 12 As an example only, assume that Harry is a registered user 30a if user 14 and pool entity 30a have the same income, who has performed a search. After matching server 20 education, and age. An advantage realized in several returns a result list, Harry chooses to learn more about one embodiments is that it better approximates how a user of the entities in the result list and clicks view button 33. evaluates entities. Entities that live further away are gener- Consider FIG. 3, which is only an example of information ally less appealing to a user; but, users may still be interested that matching server 20 may return to Harry after clicking if the entity matches their preferences in other categories. view button 33. In Harry's display 12, matching server 20 As an example only, consider a registered user, Harry, presents certain details about the profile. In particular, who submits a search request. While fulfilling this request, matching server 20 presents to Harry a fate notification 32 matching server 20 examines Sally's profile in pool 30, and which points out specific similarities between the profile of 10 determines that the stated locations of Harry's and Sally's the entity and Harry's profile. Reading fate notification 32 profiles are 13 miles apart. Matching server 20 will give gives Harry a sense of familiarity which enhances his Sally's profile a score as ifthe distance between them were appreciation for the profile. only 10 miles. However, in yet another example, Sally's In another example, fate characteristics may be used to profile may indicate that she lives 50 miles away from Harry. decide whether a profile in pool 30 is included in user's 14 15 Yet, matching server 20 also notes that both Harry and Sally result list 31. Assume that Harry is a registered user who has make $100,000 per year, have Master's degrees, and that submitted a matching query to matching server 20. While Harry and Sally are one year apart in age (Harry is older). determining which entities to include in Harry's result list, Given these similarities, matching server 20 will give a score matching server 20 considers two profiles: Sally and Roxy. to Sally's profile that is consistent with a 20 mile difference Sally and Harry both have the same birth date, initials, and 20 in location even though they are actually 50 miles apart. In have parents that work in the same profession. In contrast, this manner, matching server 20 takes into account empirical Roxy and Harry only share the same birth place. Matching data that shows that people searching for matches who server 20 may be configured to award more points to Sally indicate that they want to see matches who live close to them than to Roxy based on these comparisons, making it more are still willing to pursue a potential match that lives far likely that Sally's profile will be included in Harry's result 25 away if the potential match fits very closely with the other list. search criteria. In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- In another embodiment, matching server 20 may be figured to evaluate the likelihood of contact between user 14 configured to evaluate the age difference between user 14 and an entity in pool 30. Matching server 20 may be and pool entity 30a using ranges as well as a sliding scale. configured to compare demographic data between user 14 30 By way of example only, matching server 20 may be and pool entity 30a. In another embodiment, matching configured to assign a high value to an age difference server 20 may be configured to weigh the demographic between 0 and -5, while assigning a lower value to an age similarities and differences based on the sex of user 14. The difference between +2 and 0. An even lower value may be demographic data may include, but is not limited to, age, assigned to an age difference between -6 and -8. Even lower education, ethnicity, income, and location. 35 values would be assigned incrementally as the age difference As an example only, assume that Harry and Sally are increases outside of the ranges discussed. The higher the registered users who have profiles in matching server 20. assigned value is, the more likely it will be that pool entity Harry has submitted a search request to matching server 20. 30a will be included in result list 31. Yet another embodi- While fulfilling this request, matching server 20 evaluates ment may apply this combination of ranges and a sliding Sally's profile since her profile is in pool 30. As part of the 40 scale but use different values and ranges depending on the evaluation, matching server 20 looks at the differences sex of user 14. between Harry and Sally's stated age, income, education, As an example only, consider a situation in which a ethnicity, and location. In this example, Harry is 10 years registered user, Harry, requests a search to be performed. older than Sally, makes $10,000 more per year, and has a While fulfilling this request, matching server 20 evaluates Master's degree while Sally has a bachelor's degree. Even 45 Sally's profile, which was in pool 30. As part of the with these disparities, matching server 20 will give Sally's evaluation, matching server 20 compares the ages of Harry profile a high score which makes it more likely that Sally's and Sally, and determines that Harry is two years older than profile will appear in Harry's result list. However, if it was Sally; this determination leads to matching server 20 assign- Sally who submitted the search, and matching server 20 was ing, in this example, 50 points to Sally's profile. Matching evaluating Harry's profile, a different score is possible. So, 50 server 20 may also be configured to assign 50 points to if it were Sally who was 10 years older, made $10,000 more Sally's profile had she been five years younger than Harry; per year, and had a Master's degree while Harry had a but, if she had been up to two years older than Harry, Bachelor's degree, matching server 20 would give a low matching server 20 may have been configured to assign 40 score to Harry's profile, making it less likely that his profile points to her profile. Matching server 20 may be further would appear in Sally's result list. Matching server 20 may 55 configured to assign 30 points to Sally's profile if she was 6 be configured this way because empirical data has shown to 8 years younger than Harry. However, if Sally were more that these demographic differences do not have an equiva- than 8 years younger than Harry, matching server 20 may be lent effect on the choices men and women make regarding configured to further decrease the number of points assigned matches. to her profile: if she was 9 years younger, then 25 points; if In another embodiment, matching server 20 may be 60 she was 10 years younger, 20 points; if she was 11 years configured to compare the locations of user 14 and pool younger, 15 points; etc. The more points assigned to Sally's entity 30a in increments of ten miles. In yet another embodi- profile, the more likely it is that her profile will appear in ment, matching server 20 may be configured to score the Harry's result list. Thus, matching server 20 may be con- location comparison in light of other factors; as an example, figured to assign a score based on age difference using a matching system 20 may be configured to return a score 65 combination of ranges and a sliding scale. consistent with a 10 mile difference in location even though In another example, matching server 20 may assign scores there is a 50 mile difference between user 14 and pool entity differently if it was Sally who was searching and if it was 21 US 9,959,023 B2 13 14 Harry's profile that was being evaluated. In this example, 5 may be more likely to appear in the user's result list than matching server 20 may be configured to assign Harry's an entity with an average rating of 2. profile 50 points ifhe were between 1 and 5 years older than In another example, assume that Harry is a registered user her. If he were 6 to 8 years older than her, matching server and has requested a search. While fulfilling this request, 20 may assign 45 points. If he were greater than 8 years matching server 20 evaluates Sally's profile. As part of this older than her, matching server 20 may assign points in the evaluation, matching server 20 notices that Sally's profile following fashion: if he was 9 years older, 40 points would contains feedback from other users ranking the attractive- be assigned; if he was 10 years older, 35 points would be ness of Sally's profile. Matching server 20, in this example, assigned; etc. However, if he was up to two years younger averages that data; Sally's profile average is 6. Matching 10 server 20 may then examine Harry's profile to determine a than Sally, matching server 20 may assign 50 points to his similar average. If Harry's profile has an average close to 6, profile. If he were more than two years younger, matching it will be more likely that matching server 20 will include server 20 may assign less points on a sliding scale: 45 points Sally's profile in Harry's result list. If Harry's profile if he were 3 years younger, 40 points if he were 4 years average is lower than 6, it will be less likely that Sally's younger, etc. The more points assigned to Harry's profile, 15 profile will be included in Harry's result list. If Harry's the more like it is that his profile will appear in Sally's result profile average is greater than 6, it will be even less likely list. This example illustrates how matching server 20 may be that Sally's profile will be included in Harry's result list. The configured to take the sex of user 14 into account when more Harry's profile average deviates from that of Sally's, scoring based on age differences. the less likely it will be that matching server 20 will present In various embodiments, matching server 20 may be 20 Sally's profile in Harry's result list. configured to evaluate the attractiveness of an entity in pool In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- 30 through collected feedback from other users. In one figured to analyze profile information and received activity embodiment, matching server 20 may present an entity to information to construct "pairs" which link at least two user 14, prompting user 14 to rate the attractiveness of the profiles. These pairings may also be associated with a value entity on a scale from 1-9. This range gives the advantage of 25 that ascertains the quality of the pairing. For example, a having a midpoint. Matching server 20 may further be pairing which results from one user viewing the profile of configured to collect such responses and store them; in one another user may be assigned a value that is less than a embodiment, matching server 20 may store the data in pairing which results from a first user viewing the profile of memory 26, using a structure such as database 26b. Match- a second user when the second user has also viewed the first ing server 20 may further be configured to compute the 30 user's profile. Matching server 20 may use these pairings in average of such responses for the entity, and store this order to generate search results for entities within and number as well. In various embodiments, these values may outside of the pairing. Each member of the pair may be used be used in order to help in the matching process. Empirical as a seed entity for generating search results for users in data indicates that people are more likely to match with matching server 20. In various embodiments, an advantage people of similar attractiveness. Thus, in various embodi- 35 may be realized as matching server 20 analyzes many of ments, users whose attractiveness rating are similar will be these pairs to develop dynamic results to users of the system, more likely to appear in each other's result list. Further, a the results being potentially more relevant as matching user may indicate that they only want profiles in their result server 20 leverages the interaction between users and pro- list whose average attractiveness rating is higher than an files to generate search results. indicated threshold. 40 Pairs may be formed from a variety of user activity As an example only, assume registered user, Harry, uses received by matching server 20. This activity may include: terminal 10, which in this example is Harry's personal profile views, mutual profile views, one-way double blind computer, and establishes communication with matching communication, mutual double-blind communication, server 20. In this example, this communication occurs by declining double blind communication, one way wink, Harry using a Web browser to access a Web page controlled 45 mutual wink, expressing disinterest in response to receiving by matching server 20. Sometime after visiting the Web a wink, one way favorite, and mutual favorite. Other suitable page, matching server 20 may present Harry with an option activity may also be received by matching server 20 and to rate the physical attractiveness of other users registered utilized as a basis for generating pairs. with matching server 20. Using display 12 and interface 16, For example, Harry may be a registered user who has Harry may view profiles of registered users and rank them 50 expressed a positive preference for Sally. Matching server on a scale of 1-9 by entering the values using interface 16; 20 may be configured to generate a pair which includes in this example, interface 16 comprises a mouse and/or a Harry and Sally. Matching server 20 may utilize this pair keyboard. After submitting this rating, matching server 20 when providing search results to other users. Betty may have will associate it with the profile and store it. Matching server requested matches, and Betty may be similar to Sally. 20 will also allow other users to rate profiles, thereby 55 Matching server 20 may present Harry in Betty's result list collecting a plurality of rankings for profiles. Matching as a result of the pairing between Harry and Sally. Further, server 20 may use this data when trying to find matches for Jim may have executed a search and Jim may be similar to users. One example of this is that matching server 20 may Harry. As a result of the pairing between Sally and Harry, allow user 14 to specify that he/she is searching for profiles matching server 20 may present Sally in Jim's list of search which have an average rating of 6 or above. In tum, 60 results. matching server 20 may populate user's 14 result list from In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- the pool only with profiles whose average rating is at 6 or figured to encourage user 14 to interact with entities in pool above. Another example of how matching server 20 may use 30. For example, matching server 20 may present a list of this data involves making it more likely that an entity will limited entities from pool 30 to user 14, but not present other appear in a user's result list if the entity and that user have 65 entities to user 14 unless user 14 interacts with the already a similar average attractiveness rating. So, if a user has an presented entities. Possible interaction with these entities average rating of 6, then an entity with an average rating of may include viewing more information regarding the entity, 21 US 9,959,023 B2 15 16 expressing a positive or negative preference for the entity, form 50. Matching server 20 may further be configured to and choosing to contact the entity. Other suitable forms of provide users of social networking platform 50 a service by interaction may also be utilized. For example, matching which they may search for users within set 52 or within pool server 20 may prompt the user with a question about the list 30 using the algorithms and processing of matching server of entities, such as asking whether or not the user likes the 20. Matching server 20 may even further be configured to entity. Responses to such prompts may include "yes," allow users of matching server 20 to search through pool 30 "maybe," "no," "remove," and "remove other." The pre- and set 52. Matching server 20 may be configured to parse sented entities may be chosen using a variety of methods. the profiles of the entities in set 52, collecting data and For example, the presented entities may be chosen based on applying algorithms. various scoring algorithms as described above. In addition, 10 In another embodiment, matching server 20 may be presented entities may be chosen using predictive analysis, configured to allow users of social networking platform 50 such as logistical regression. Other techniques may be used to interact with matching server 20 using social networking to determine the presented entities. For example, entities that platform 50. This level of integration provides the advantage have been presented previously may be excluded. As of users not having to learn and sign up for a different another example, entities that have been blocked by user 14 15 platform. may also be excluded. In various embodiments, a combina- Social networking platform 50, in one embodiment, may tion of these techniques as well as others may be used to be a service which stores profiles of its users. This service determine the limited number of entities presented to user may be further configured to provide access to the stored 14. profiles. In one embodiment, social networking platform 50 For example, Harry may be a registered user of the 20 may also allow other services to interact with users of social matching system. Matching server 20 may be configured to networking platform 50 through social networking platform present to Harry a list of five entities that Harry must interact 50. with. Once Harry has interacted with these entities, match- In one embodiment, matching server 20 may be config- ing server 20 may present five more entities for Harry to ured to collect requests from users of social networking interact with. Previously, Harry has blocked Sally, another 25 platform 50 and perform a search through pool 30 and set 52. registered user of the system. As a result, matching server 20 Matching server 20 may further be configured to present the may exclude Sally from being presented to Harry in the list results of this search from within social networking platform of five entities. Further, Harry has already interacted with 50. Matching server 20 may further be configured to present Betty, another registered user of the system: Harry sent a entities in the search result from pool 30 as if they were message to Betty utilizing matching server 20. As a result, 30 entities of set 52; in one embodiment, matching server 20 Betty will be excluded from being presented to Harry in the may be configured to generate profiles of entities from pool list of five entities. Matching server 20 may then choose two 30 into set 52. Thus, users of social networking platform 50 of the five entities using scoring algorithms described above. may view all of the entities in the search result, regardless For example, matching server 20 may choose Alice and Amy of their source (either from pool 30 or set 52), within the to be presented in the list of five entities because Alice and 35 environment of social networking platform 50. Amy have received high scores when their profiles were As an example only, consider two users: Harry, for whom compared to Harry's profile. Matching server 20 may matching server 20 has created a profile, and Sally, who has choose the remaining three entities using predictive analysis. a profile stored in social networking platform 50. From According to this example, matching server 20 may use within social networking platform 50, matching server 20 logistical regression to identify Carla, Christi, and Camela as 40 presents to Sally the ability to perform a search which Sally the other three entities to present to Harry. Thus, in this uses. The results of this search are presented to Sally within example, Harry is presented with a list of five entities by social networking platform 50. In this example, Harry's matching server 20. Matching server 20 may not present profile is displayed to Sally as a search result along with another set of five entities until Harry has interacted with other entities from set 52 though Harry's profile was from these five entities. Harry may interact with these entities in 45 pool 30. In this example, matching server 20 uses the a variety of ways. For example, Harry may send a message algorithms discussed herein and searches through the pro- to Alice and send a "wink" to Amy. In addition, Harry may files stored in pool 30 and set 52. In order to display Harry's choose to view more information about Carla's profile, but profile to Sally, matching server 20 creates a profile in set 52 express a negative preference towards Christi and Camela. using the data stored in Harry's profile in pool 30. Sally is After matching server 20 receives these types of interaction 50 then able to interact with this newly created profile from with the presented five entities, another set of five entities within social networking platform 50 in the same manner as may be presented to Harry. she is other entities in set 52. In this example, matching server 20 may further be In another embodiment, matching server 20 may be configured to process the user interaction provided by Harry. configured to allow its users to interact with social network- For example, matching server 20 may utilize Alice's profile 55 ing platform 50 through matching server 20. In one embodi- as a seed entity to generate other possible entities to present ment, matching server 20 supplements pool 30 with set 52. to Harry since Harry sent a message to Alice. Thus, a benefit In yet another embodiment, entities from set 52 appear as is from presenting a the five entities to Harry in that the entities of pool 30 to the user in their list of search results. interaction between Harry and these entities may be utilized In one embodiment, matching server 20 may be configured by matching server 20 to generate other entities for matching 60 to generate profiles within pool 30 from entities of set 52; the to Harry. This serves as an example of how preferences may system may be configured to do so through capabilities be identified based on user behavior. provided by social networking platform 50, such as an In FIG. 4, one embodiment is disclosed wherein matching application prograniming interface. server 20, with pool 30, may be configured to interact with As an example only, consider two users: Harry, whose another platform, such as social networking platform 50, 65 profile is stored in matching server 20, and Sally, whose containing a set 52 of users. Users 14 are communicatively profile is stored in social networking platform 50. Harry coupled to matching server 20 and social networking plat- submits a search request to matching server 20. Matching 21 US 9,959,023 B2 17 18 server 20 may return result list 31 to Harry, which, in this -continued example, contains an entity representing Sally's profile. Matching server 20 may accomplish this by creating profiles Number of Points Condition for Ordering in pool 30 that correspond to the profiles found in set 52. Once these profiles have been imported into pool 30, match- Both have the same +131072 ing server 20 may then search through pool 30. While doing preference for drinking alcohol so, matching server 20 applies the algorithms and scores Same answer for Ethnicity +1024 discussed herein. Thus, in this example, matching server 20 Sarne answer for Fear +256 has been configured to both search and apply scoring Sarne answer for Hair +2 10 Sarne answer for Number of +524288 algorithms to entities in pool 30 and set 52. Further, in one children example, Harry is not able to distinguish that Sally's profile Sarne answer for morning +32 was originally stored in social networking platform 50. Sarne answer for "must have" +32768 Rather, matching server 20 presents Sally's profile in the Sarne answer for "night out" +16 Sarne answer for "pets" +65536 same manner as other profiles stored in pool 30. Thus, in this 15 Sarne answer for politics +8192 example, Harry may use favorite button 34, view button 33, Sarne answer for relationship +O and contact button 35 when interacting with Sally's profile status in the same manner as described above. Sarne answer for "romance" +512 One advantage present in various embodiments is that a Sarne answer for smoking +262144 preferences user has a wider pool of entities to search through. Another Sarne answer for sports +8 20 advantage is that a user does not have to sign up with several interests platforms to search through the users on those platforms. Sarne answer for "system" +4096 FIG. 5 is a flowchart illustrating one embodiment of how result list 31 may be generated. At step 62, matching server As an example only, consider a registered user, Harry, 20 generates pool 30, as described above. At step 64, who desires to perform a search. Before processing the 25 matching server 20 applies a filter to pool 30, removing request, matching server 20 may ask Harry what sex he is certain entities; in various embodiments, this filter is based and what sex does he desire to be matched with· in this on user's 14 own sex and the sex user 14 desires to be example, Harry responds that he is a male seeking; female. matched with. At step 66, matching server 20 may be configured to apply algorithms to pool 30 that will generate After doing so, matching server 20 will generate pool 30 as a plurality of scores for each entity in pool 30. In one 30 described above. Next, matching server 20 will apply a filter embodiment, these algorithms may include analyzing the to remove certain entities from pool 30. In this example, all text of the profiles of the entities in pool 30 to generate a males will be removed from pool 30 since Harry is seeking readability score, determining how attractive an entity of a female. Further, all females seeking females will be pool 30 is, or measuring how likely it is that user 14 will removed from pool 30 since Harry is a male. In other contact an entity of pool 30. At step 68, matching server 20 35 examples, other entities that are removed from pool 30 ~ay be configured to collect all of the scores from step 66; include entities that Harry has expressed a negative prefer- m one embodiment, matching server 20 may use database ence for before, or entities that have expressed a negative 26b to store all of these scores. At step 70, matching server preference for Harry. After pool 30 has been filtered, match- 20 may be configured to apply an ordering algorithm which ing server 20 applies a variety of scoring algorithms to the will determine the order in which entities in result list 31 are 40 entities remaining in pool 30. These algorithms may account ~or ".arious comparisons such as those based on readability, presented to user 14. In one embodiment, this ordering algorithm is based, in part, on the scoring algorithms applied hkehhood to contact, fate, and keywords described above. at step 66. The ordering algorithm assigns points to each Matching server 20 will then tabulate these scores, storing entity and orders them based on these values, constructing them, in this example, in database 26b. Matching server 20 result list 31. An embodiment of this ordering algorithm is 45 will then determine what order these entities are presented to surmnarized in the following table: Harry by applying an ordering algorithm. Here, matching server 20 assigns one ordering score to each entity by examining the results of the scoring algorithms. After doing Number of Points so, matching server will present result list 31 to Harry, where Condition for Ordering 50 the order of the entities that appear in the result list is based on the ordering algorithm. In this example, it is possible for Readability score 1 point +33554432 higher than user result list 31 to change. Consider another user, Sally, who Match result entity has +16777216 appears in Harry's result list. If Harry decides to add her into expressed a preference for a separate list by using favorite button 34, Sally will be the user 55 removed from result list 31 (as described above). However, Match result entity has been +8388608 recommended by a friend of Sally will also become a seed entity from which entities may the user be added to pool 30 (as described above). Hence, matching User has viewed the details +2097152 server 20 will update the pool, apply the filters, apply the of match result entity scoring algorithms, tabulate the results, apply the ordering Match result entity has +1048576 commonality with an entity 60 alg?rithm, and update result list 31. As another example, an user has expressed a entity may update their profile which can change result list preference for 31. For example, assume Sally's profile had an ordering Both have the same ambition +128 algorithm score that placed her within the top 20 entities in Both have the same beliefs +16384 Same answer for Build +64 result list 31. Sally then changes her profile which results in Sarne answer for Car +1 65 keywords that match Harry's profile being added to her Both have the same diet +4 profile. Matching server 20 will then update her scoring algorithms. In this example, the change in Sally's profile and 21 US 9,959,023 B2 19 20 resulting increase in keyword matches with Harry's profile facial recognition algorithms to detect ethnicity, hair color, significantly increased her score. This was then reflected in eye color, etc., of profiles that user 14 has expressed interest the ordering algorithm as it was also applied to the updated Ill. profile. Afterwards, Sally's profile is now placed within the In particular embodiments, matching server 20 may have top 5 entities in result list 31. users 14 to link their user profiles to an existing profile In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- within social networking platform 50. Matching server 20 figured to receive required characteristics from user 14 may be configured to generate and add profiles to user regarding a match. User 14 may be allowed to specify such profile pool 30 from entities of set 52; the system may be restrictions based upon any number of characteristics, configured to do so through capabilities provided by social 10 networking platform 50, such as an application program- including those described herein. For example, matching ming interface. One advantage of linking is that matching server 20 may allow user 14 to specify that entities that server 20 can use the authentication features provided by indicate they have children should not be displayed. In social networking platform 50. For example, creating a user another example, user 14 may specify that only entities profile on matching server 20 containing false information between the ages of 20 and 30 should be present in result list 15 becomes harder when the information must come from 31. In some embodiments, matching server 20 may imple- another verifiable and peer monitored source such as social ment these restrictions in step 64 of FIG. 5. In other networking platform 50. embodiments, however, matching server 20 may refuse to In some embodiments, matching server 20 may allow a apply these restrictions to certain entities based on the user 14 to propose a match between two of his connections characteristics of the entities. Any number of characteristics, 20 within social networking platform 50. For example, Harry including those described herein, may form the basis upon may be friends with both Bob and Sally within social which matching server 20 decides not to apply the restric- networking platform 50. Harry believes Bob and Sally are a tions submitted by user 14. As an example only, matching good match and therefore instructs matching server 20 to server 20 may ignore the restrictions ifthe entity has a high create a match between the two users in user profile pool 30. enough attractiveness rating. In another example, though 25 Once matched, matching server 20 allows Harry and Sally user 14 has requested that no profiles which are located more to communicate with each other. than 50 miles away should be present in result list 31, In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- matching server 20 may include such profiles because those figured to apply a relevance algorithm which determines the profiles have over 5 matching keywords, a high attractive- content and order in which matching server 20 displays ness rating, and have specified the same life goals as user 14. 30 potential matches to user 14. A relevance algorithm may be Thus, in some embodiments, matching server 20 may refuse based on both explicit and implicit signals from user 14. to apply restrictions submitted by user 14 based on any Explicit signals include information entered by user 14 as combination of characteristics or algorithms. part of its user profile, such as height, weight, age, location, An advantage present in many embodiments is that income, and ethnicity. Explicit signals may also include through taking into account various factors when scoring 35 information about the characteristics user 14 is seeking in a potential matches and using only very few strict filters, a match, such as gender, hair color, eye color, or occupation. large amount of result entities may be returned to the user. Explicit signals may also be entered by user 14 as part of a A further advantage is that the ordering algorithm will put search request. For example, user 14 may request matching the most relevant search results first, saving the user time. server 20 limit the pool of potential matches to those users FIGS. 6-9 depict embodiments of a user interface pre- 40 within a fixed geographic region. Matching server 20 is sented to users of the matching system discussed above with operable to compare geographic positions associated with respect to FIGS. 1and4. According to some embodiments, the plurality of user profiles in user profile pool 30 with a users 14 interact with matching server 20 through interface geographic position associated with user 14. Explicit signals 16 presented by terminal 10. In addition to the embodiments may be imported from a social networking platform 50, such of interface 16 described above in relation to FIG. lA, 45 as the number of shared entities in a social graph of user 14. interface 16 may also comprise a touch screen interface Implicit signals may be based on the behavior of user 14 operable to detect and receive touch input such as a tap or either within system 100 or other social networking plat- a swiping gesture. forms 50. For example, if user 14 has expressed disapproval In some embodiments, matching server 20 may import of a user profile in the past, matching server 20 may no profiles from other social networking systems. This level of 50 longer present the disapproved of user profile to user 14 in integration provides the advantage of users only having to future searches. In various embodiments, matching server 20 update their profile information in one place. For example, may be configured to evaluate the attractiveness of a user in when user 14 updates his profile within social networking user profile pool 30 through collected feedback from other platform 50, matching server 20 is also able to access the users. For example, matching server 20 may rank a user updated profile information. 55 profile that receives more likes as more relevant than a user In some embodiments, matching server 20 may further be profile that receives fewer likes. In particular embodiments, configured, as part of the user registration process, to link to matching server 20 may assign a higher relevance to a user a user's existing profile within social networking platform profile if the other user has previously expressed a prefer- 50. Matching server 20 may be configured to parse the ence for user 14. As an example, user Harry may have profiles of the users in set 52, e.g., collecting data and 60 previously expressed a preference for user Sally. If Sally applying algorithms. For example, matching server 20 may requests a set of user profiles from matching server 20, and use explicit signals from social networking platform 50 such Harry's user profile is included in the set, matching server 20 as common friends, common interests, common network, may assign Harry's user profile a higher relevance based on location, gender, sexuality, or age to evaluate potential his expression of preference for Sally. This can result in matches between users 14. Matching server 20 may also use 65 Harry's profile being presented to Sally sooner than other- implicit signals such as for whom a user 14 expresses wise would have occurred. This may be advantageous in that approval and disapproval. Implicit signals may also include it can increase the chances of a match without compromising 21 US 9,959,023 B2 21 22 a user's feelings of privacy when expressing preferences for example, Harry may expand his search to a twenty-five mile potential matches. In some embodiments, matching server radius to meet people in his town, not just his immediate 20 may be configured to use the fate characteristics as a vicinity. metric in the relevance algorithm. FIGS. 7 and 8 are diagrams of embodiments of the display In some embodiments, terminal 10 is operable to deter- from FIG. 6 showing the effect of a left swipe gesture (FIG. mine its own geographic location by a global positioning 7) and the effect of a right swipe gesture (FIG. 8). In one satellite navigational system. Terminal 10 may also deter- embodiment, users 14 may navigate through the set of mine its own geographic location using cellphone-based presented users by swiping through stack of cards 88. Users triangulation techniques, Wi-Fi based positioning system, 14 may also express approval of a presented user by per- 10 forming a right swipe gesture or express disapproval by Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) system, or network performing a left swipe gesture. In some embodiments, user addresses assigned by a service provider. 14 performs a swiping gesture by moving a finger or other FIG. 6 shows one embodiment of system 100 displaying suitable object across a screen of terminal 10. Other suitable to a user the profile information of a second user. Matching gestures or manners of interacting with terminal 10 may be server 20 may be configured to search through its plurality 15 used (e.g., tapping on portions of a screen of terminal 10). of profiles and present suggested matches to user 14. In FIG. In some embodiments, matching server 20 creates a 6, one embodiment of this presentation is depicted as match between two users 14 after both users 14 have occurring through the display of terminal 10. In this embodi- expressed a preference for each other's profiles using like ment, a plurality of user profiles is presented to user 14. button 86 or the swiping gesture associated with like button Using terminal 10, user 14 may request that matching server 20 86. When matching server 20 creates a match, it may also 20 present a subset of users from user profile pool 30 based provide the matched users with the ability to contact each on specified search parameters. The display may show an other through a contact button. In some embodiments, when image of a suggested user and one or more aspects of the a match is created, matching server 20 may immediately (or suggested user's profile information. In some embodiments, soon thereafter) present an option to users 14 that have been the combination of image and one or more aspects of profile 25 matched to engage in a communication session (e.g., a chat, information is displayed as "card" 88 representing the an SMS message, an e-mail, a telephone call, a voice suggested user. A set of suggested users may be displayed as communication session, a video communication session). stack of cards 88. User 14 may view information regarding This may be done in response to a first user 14 expressing one suggested user at a time or more than one of the a preference for a second user 14 that has already expressed suggested users at a time. User 14 may be presented with a 30 a preference for the first user 14. surmnary of information regarding a suggested user. The FIG. 9 shows one embodiment of matching system 100 surmnary may include one or more of: a picture, an icon, displaying a match of a first user and a second user, in name, location information, gender, physical attributes, hob- accordance with a particular embodiment. Matching server bies, or other profile information. 20 may provide first user 14 and second user 14 with each In some embodiments, terminal 10 may also display 35 other's contact information such as a telephone number or "information" button 84 which allows user 14 to request an e-mail address. Matching server 20 may also provide both matching server 20 to retrieve and display more information first and second users 14 with a way to directly contact the about the presented user from user profile pool 30. In other, such as sending a message or providing voice or video addition, user 14 may express approval or disapproval for a communication between the first and second user. In some presented user. Expressing approval or disapproval can be 40 embodiments, direct communication may be initiated by accomplished through various methods. For example, ter- pressing "Send a Message" button 92. Alternatively, a user minal 10 may display "like" button 86 (represented by a may choose to continue browsing the set of presented users green heart icon) and "dislike" button 82 (represented by a by pressing "Keep Playing" button 94. red "X" icon). Pressing like button 86 indicates to matching For example, user Harry may indicate a preference to server 20 that user 14 approves of and is interested in 45 communicate directly with user Sally by selecting like communication with the presented user. Pressing dislike button 86. At this point, Sally is not aware that Harry button 82 indicates that user 14 disapproves of and does not expressed a preference for her. If Sally also requests match- want to communicate with the presented user. The approval ing server 20 present her with a set of possible matches, preference of user 14 is anonymous in that matching server Harry may appear in her set. Sally may select like button 86 20 does not inform users 14 whether other users have 50 (or perform an associated swiping gesture) when viewing expressed approval or disapproval for them. Harry's profile. Matching server 20 may then notify both As an example, consider two registered users, Harry and Harry and Sally that a match occurred. At this point, both Sally, both of whom have profiles stored in matching server Harry and Sally are made aware that they each expressed 20. Harry is at a restaurant and requests matching server 20 approval of each other's profile. Matching server 20 then to present him users within a one-mile radius of his location. 55 enables Harry and Sally to directly communicate with each Matching server 20 compares a geographic position associ- other (e.g., through a private chat interface). ated with Sally with a geographic position associated with In some embodiments, one advantage of a system dis- Harry. If Sally is currently within the one-mile radius of closing preferences of profiles to users when mutual Harry and matching server 20 determines her profile infor- approval has occurred is that a user can feel more secure in mation matches Harry's preferences, matching server 20 60 their privacy knowing that their preferences will be dis- will present Harry one or more aspects of Sally's profile closed to those that have expressed a preference for that user. information. If other users also meet the search criteria, As an example, a user can avoid embarrassment if their matching server 20 will present one or more aspects of those expression of preference for a profile was not reciprocated. users' profile information as well. Harry may request more This may lead to users more actively expressing their information about Sally by pressing information button 84. 65 preferences. Such increased activity can be used by the Harry may also indicate his preference to communicate matching system to generate more potential matches or directly with Sally by selecting like button 86. In another better rankings of potential matches. In some embodiments, 21 US 9,959,023 B2 23 24 matching server 20 may be configured to allow direct some embodiments, step 1104 may not be performed. For communication between users when there has been a mutual example, if a matching proposal is suggested, then matching expression of preference. This may be advantageous server 20 may perform step 1106 with respect to the users because users can avoid browsing, deleting, or responding to suggested to be matched. unwanted messages. FIGS. 12A-D depict embodiments of a user interface. In FIG. 10 is a flowchart depicting a method for enabling some embodiments, the interface allows user 14 of terminal communication between two users of the matching system 10 to enable communication between other users 14 by of FIG. 1 based on a mutual expression of approval, in suggesting a matching proposal to matching server 20. accordance with a particular embodiment. FIG. 12A illustrates one embodiment of an interface for At step 1002, in some embodiments, matching server 20 10 proposing a match between two users. The interface is generates a set of user profiles in response to a request for divided into three sections: connection list area 1202, search matching from a first user 14. At step 1004, matching server area 1204, and suggestion area 1206. Connection list area 20 presents the set of user profiles to first user 14. Matching 1202 displays a set of connections user 14 has with other server 20 determines the contents and ordering of the set of users of, e.g., system 100 of FIG. 1. Connections may be users profiles by using, e.g., the relevance algorithms 15 based on prior matches created by matching server 20. described above in the discussion of FIG. 4. For example, Connections may also be imported from another social matching server 20 may only include user profiles whose networking platform 50. Search area 1204 enables user 14 to contents indicate location within a specified geographical search for particular connections within system 100. In some radius and order the presentation of those user profiles based embodiments, the search may be limited to just the connec- on the number of mutual friends in common with first user 20 tions displayed in connection list area 1202. Suggestion area 14. 1206 displays the connections that user 14 may use to form At step 1006, in some embodiments, matching server 20 a suggested match. receives an indication of the preference of first user 14 FIG. 12B illustrates suggestion area 1206 displaying a regarding a presented user profile. Matching server 20 first selected user (i.e., "Jonathan Smith") of a proposed determines if first user 14 expresses approval or disapproval 25 match between two users. User 14 identifies the first selected of the presented user profile at step 1008. If first user 14 user through a set of interactions with connection list area disapproves of the presented user profile then a match is not 1202, search area 1204, and suggestion area 1206. For made and, at step 1016, matching server 20 will not allow example, user 14 may locate a connection in connection list communication between the two users. If first user 14 area 1202 by typing a user handle in search area 1204. User expresses approval for the presented user profile at step 30 14 may then add the connection to suggestion area 1206. In 1008, then matching server 20 will check if second user 14 some embodiments, user 14 may drag the connection from represented by the presented user profile has already connection list area 1202 to suggestion area 1206. expressed a preference for first user 14 at step 1010. If FIG. 12C illustrates suggestion area 1206 displaying a matching server 20 detects a mutual expression of approval proposed match between two suggested users (i.e., "Jona- then a match is made between first and second users 14. 35 than Smith" and "Mary Major"). For example, user 14 may Then, at step 1012, matching server 20 allows private locate a second connection in connect list area 1202 that user communications between first and second users 14. If a 14 believes is a match for the first connection. User 14 may mutual expression of approval is not detected at step 1010, add the second connection to suggestion area 1206. When then matching server 20 stores the preference of first user 14 both connections are added to suggestion area 1206, match- regarding the presented user profile for future comparison 40 ing server 20 may create a match between the two users and and continues to step 1016 where private communications allow communication between them. are not yet allowed. FIG. 12D illustrates an example communication interface FIG. 11 is a flowchart depicting a method for enabling between users of the matching system. User 14 is presented communication between two users of the matching system with chat box 1208 for each of the matches that exist for user of FIG. 1 based on a matching proposal suggested by a user, 45 14. Users 14 may communicate with each other through chat in accordance with a particular embodiment. At step 1102, box 1208. In some embodiments, users 14 may communi- matching server 20 receives interactions from first user 14. cate through SMS messages, e-mail, telephone calls, online Interactions from first user 14 may include identification of voice communication sessions, and/or video communication user profiles for two other users 14. For example, Harry is sess10ns. connected to both Bob and Sally within social networking 50 Modifications, additions, or omissions may be made to the platform 50. Harry believes Bob and Sally are a good match methods described herein (such as those described above for each other and generates a matching proposal requesting with respect to FIGS. 5, 10 and 11) without departing from matching server 20 to create a match between Bob and Sally. the scope of the disclosure. For example, the steps may be At step 1104, in some embodiments, matching server 20 combined, modified, or deleted where appropriate, and addi- validates the suggested matching proposal between second 55 tional steps may be added. Additionally, the steps may be and third users 14. For example, matching server 20 verifies performed in any suitable order without departing from the that Bob's profile indicates that he wants to be matched with scope of the present disclosure. a woman, and Sally's profile indicates that she wants to be Although several embodiments have been illustrated and matched with a man. Matching server 20 may also verify described in detail, it will be recognized that substitutions that Sally has not previously expressed disapproval for Bob. 60 and alterations are possible without departing from the spirit If matching server 20 determines the suggested matching and scope of the appended claims. proposal is valid, matching server 20 creates the match and What is claimed is: allows communication between the users 14 suggested to be 1. A method of navigating a user interface, comprising: matched at step 1106. If matching server 20 determines the presenting, on a graphical user interface, a graphical suggested matching proposal is not valid, matching server 65 representation of a first item of information of a plu- 20 does not create a match and does not allow communi- rality of items of information, the first item of infor- cation between second and third users 14 at step 1108. In mation comprising a graphical representation of a first 21 US 9,959,023 B2 25 26 online dating profile associated with a first user, automatically present a graphical representation of a wherein presenting the graphical representation of the second item of information of the plurality of items first item of information of the plurality of items of of information in response to the processor detecting information comprises presenting the first item of infor- the gesture, the second item of information compris- mation as a first card of a stack of cards; ing a graphical representation of a second online detecting a gesture associated with the graphical repre- dating profile associated with a second user; and sentation of the first item of information, the gesture corresponding to a positive preference indication asso- automatically remove the graphical representation of ciated with the first item of information, the positive the first item of information in response to detecting preference indication associated with the first item of 10 the gesture. information comprising an expression of approval for 4. The system of claim 3, wherein the interface is further the first user associated with the first online dating operable to present user interface controls such that ail user profile, wherein detecting the gesture associated with interface controls configured to cause another item of infor- the graphical representation of the first item of infor- mation of the plurality of items of information to be dis- mation comprises detecting a right swiping direction 15 played are associated with performing an action on the first associated with the gesture; item of information. storing the positive preference indication associated with the first item of information in response to detecting the 5. At least one non-transitory computer-readable medium gesture; comprising a plurality of instructions that, when executed by automatically presenting, on the graphical user interface, 20 at least one processor, are configured to: a graphical representation of a second item of infor- present, on a graphical user interface, a graphical repre- mation of the plurality of items of information in sentation of a first item of information of a plurality of response to detecting the gesture, the second item of items of information, the first item of information information comprising a graphical representation of a comprising a graphical representation of a first online second online dating profile associated with a second 25 dating profile associated with a first user, wherein the user; and plurality of instructions are configured to present the automatically removing the graphical representation of graphical representation of the first item of information the first item of information from the graphical user of the plurality of items of information as a first card of interface in response to detecting the gesture. a stack of cards; 2. The method of claim 1, wherein presenting the graphi- 30 detect a gesture associated with the graphical representa- cal representation of the first item of information of the tion of the first item of information, the gesture corre- plurality of items of information comprises presenting user sponding to a positive preference indication associated interface controls such that all user interface controls con- with the first item of information, the positive prefer- figured to cause another item of information of the plurality ence indication associated with the first item of infor- of items of information to be displayed are associated with 35 mation comprising an expression of approval for the performing an action on the first item of information. first user associated with the first online dating profile, 3. A system, comprising: wherein the plurality of instructions are further config- an interface operable to: ured to detect a right swiping direction associated with present a graphical representation of a first item of the gesture; information of a plurality of items of information, 40 the first item of information comprising a graphical store the positive preference indication associated with representation of a first online dating profile associ- the first item of information in response to detecting the ated with a first user, wherein the interface is further gesture; operable to present the graphical representation of automatically present, on the graphical user interface, a the first item of information of the plurality of items 45 graphical representation of a second item of informa- of information as a first card of a stack of cards; tion of the plurality of items of information in response a processor coupled to the interface and operable to: to detecting the gesture, the second item of information detect a gesture associated with the graphical represen- comprising a graphical representation of a second tation of the first item of information, the gesture online dating profile associated with a second user; and corresponding to a positive preference indication 50 automatically remove the graphical representation of the associated with the first item of information, the first item of information from the graphical user inter- positive preference indication associated with the face in response to detecting the gesture. first item of information comprising an expression of 6. The at least one non-transitory computer-readable approval for the first user associated with the first online dating profile, wherein the processor is further 55 medium of claim 5, wherein the plurality of instructions are operable to detect a right swiping direction associ- further configured to present user interface controls such that ated with the gesture; all user interface controls configured to cause another item store the positive preference indication associated with of information of the plurality of items of information to be the first item of information in response to detecting displayed are associated with performing an action on the the gesture; and 60 first item of information. the interface further operable to: * * * * * 21 Exhibit C 21 Illlll llllllll Ill lllll lllll lllll lllll lllll 111111111111111111111111111111111 US010203854B2 c12) United States Patent (IO) Patent No.: US 10,203,854 B2 Rad et al. (45) Date of Patent: *Feb.12,2019 (54) MATCHING PROCESS SYSTEM AND (58) Field of Classification Search METHOD CPC ........... G06F 17/30867; G06F 17/3053; G06F 17/30386 (71) Applicant: Match Group, LLC, Dallas, TX (US) See application file for complete search history. (72) Inventors: Sean Rad, Los Angeles, CA (US); Todd M. Carrico, Sachse, TX (US); (56) References Cited Kenneth B. Hoskins, Plano, TX (US); James C. Stone, Addison, TX (US); U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS Jonathan Badeen, North Hollywood, 6,480,885 Bl 11/2002 Olivier CA (US) 7,917,448 B2 3/2011 Smola et al. (Continued) (73) Assignee: Match Group, LLC, Dallas, TX (US) (*) Notice: Subject to any disclaimer, the term ofthis OTHER PUBLICATIONS patent is extended or adjusted under 35 PCT Notification of Transmittal of the International Search Report U.S.C. 154(b) by 0 days. and the Written Opinion of the International Searching Authority, or This patent is subject to a terminal dis- the Declaration with attached PCT International Search Report and claimer. Written Opinion of the International Searching Authority in Inter- national Application No. PCT/US08/87706, dated Feb. 10, 2009, 8 (21) Appl. No.: 15/944,542 pages. (Continued) (22) Filed: Apr. 3, 2018 (65) Prior Publication Data Primary Examiner - Yuk Ting Choi US 2018/0292981 Al Oct. 11, 2018 (74) Attorney, Agent, or Firm - Baker Botts L.L.P. Related U.S. Application Data (57) ABSTRACT (63) Continuation of application No. 15/676,773, filed on Aug. 14, 2017, which is a continuation of application A method for profile matching includes receiving a plurality of user profiles, each user profile comprising traits of a (Continued) respective user. The method includes receiving a preference (51) Int. Cl. indication for a first user profile of the plurality of user G06F 17130 (2006.01) profiles. The method also includes determining a potential G06F 310484 (2013.01) match user profile of the plurality of user profiles based on the preference indication for the first user profile. The (Continued) method also includes presenting the potential match user (52) U.S. Cl. profile to a second user. CPC ........ G06F 3104842 (2013.01); G06F 310482 (2013.01); G06F 310488 (2013.01); (Continued) 12 Claims, 11 Drawing Sheets = 10 = 10 Ggj tinder 88 88 82 ®CD@ 86 21 US 10,203,854 B2 Page 2 Related U.S. Application Data 2008/0294624 Al 11/2008 Kanigsberg et al. 2008/0301118 Al 12/2008 Chien et al. No. 14/059,192, filed on Oct. 21, 2013, now Pat. No. 200910106040 Al 412009 Jones 9,733,811, which is a continuation-in-part of appli- 2010/0125632 Al 5/2010 Leonard cation No. 12/339,301, filed on Dec. 19, 2008, now 2011/0087974 Al 4/2011 Kulas 2011/0196927 Al 8/2011 Vance Pat. No. 8,566,327. 2012/0088524 Al* 4/2012 Moldavsky. G06Q 30/02 455/456.3 (60) Provisional application No. 61/793,866, filed on Mar. 2014/0040368 Al 212014 Janssens 15, 2013, provisional application No. 61/015,099, 2014/0074824 Al 3/2014 Rad filed on Dec. 19, 2007. OTHER PUBLICATIONS (51) Int. Cl. G06Q 10110 (2012.01) USPTO, Non-final Office Action dated Aug. 25, 2011 for U.S. Appl. G06Q 30102 (2012.01) No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, G06Q 50110 (2012.01) 14 pages. G06Q 50100 (2012.01) Response to Office Action Pursuant to 37 C.F.R. § 1.111 filed Nov. G06F 310482 (2013.01) 23, 2011 for U.S. Appl. No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, 12 pages. G06F 310488 (2013.01) USPTO, Final Office Action dated Jan. 6, 2012 for U.S. Appl. No. (52) U.S. Cl. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, 15 CPC .. G06F 17130554 (2013.01); G06F 17130657 pages. (2013.01); G06Q 10110 (2013.01); G06Q Request for Continued Examination Transmittal and Amendment 30102 (2013.01); G06Q 50101 (2013.01); Filed with Request for Continued Examination filed May 7, 2012 G06Q 50110 (2013.01) for U.S. Appl. No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, 17 pages. (56) References Cited USPTO, Non-final Office Action dated Oct. 2, 2012 for U.S. Appl. No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS 10 pages. Response to Office Action Pursuant to 37 C.F.R. § 1.111 filed Dec. 8,060,463Bl 1112011 Spiegel 31, 2012 for U.S. Appl. No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the 8,180,804Bl 512012 Narayanan et al. name of Todd M. Carrico, 13 pages. 8,566,327B2 10/2013 Carrico et al. USPTO, Final Office Action dated Mar. 7, 2013 for U.S. Appl. No. 9,547,369Bl 1/2017 Wernick et al. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, 12 9,720,570B2 8/2017 Wernick et al. pages. 2005/0021750 Al 1/2005 Abrams Response to Office Action Pursuant to 37 C.F.R. § 1.116 and 2005/0027707 Al 212005 Syed Certification and Request for Consideration Under the After Final 2006/0059147 Al 3/2006 Weiss et al. Consideration Pilot Program 2.0 filed Jun. 6, 2013 for U.S. Appl. 2006/0085419 Al 412006 Rosen 200610106780 Al 512006 Dagan No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd M. Carrico, 2007/0073687 Al 3/2007 Terrill et al. 14 pages. 2007/0073803 Al 3/2007 Terrill et al. USPTO, Notice of Allowance and Fees Due dated Jun. 19, 2013 for 2008/0051033 Al* 2/2008 Hymes .............. G06F 17/30247 U.S. Appl. No. 12/339,301, filed Dec. 19, 2008 in the name of Todd 455/47 M. Carrico, 12 pages. 2008/0196094 Al* 8/2008 Bensch op G06Q 20/10 726/5 * cited by examiner 21 U.S. Patent Feb.12,2019 Sheet 1 of 11 US 10,203,854 B2 100 i 22 24 22 0 0 0 20 10 12: ! DISPLAY w26a ...r26 ~28 16 ~ INTERFACE I ~26b ~28 0 0 Q. 0 0 0 FIG. JB FIG. JC 21 U.S. Patent Feb.12,2019 Sheet 2 of 11 US 10,203,854 B2 NAME PROPERTY 1 PROPERTY 2 0 0 0 Jane Doe./ 3 oa Jane Roe../"' 30b 30· Jane Boe../"' 30c 0 0 0 Jane Loe ""'-- d 30 Jane Snoe""'- 0e 0 3 0 0 FIG. JD SEARCH RES ULTS ~33 1. Jane Doe/ 31 a ~ llvl/ 34 31 · 2. Jane Roe../""'31 b ~ 33 1!2Y34 3.JaneBoe""-- . II View 0 31 c - - 33 rr.2h.34 0 0 See More FIG. JE Jane Doe Contact r- 35 / 12 ~36 Born: 10/01 /75 Hometown: Dallas, TX Likes: Chocolate, rollerblading Dislikes: Body odor, arrogance, football FIG. IF 21 U.S. Patent Feb.12,2019 Sheet 3 of 11 US 10,203,854 B2 SEARCH RESULTS I 11· Jane Doe) 31 ~· Jane Boe I~ ~ Jane Loe ~FIG. 2 11 Sally recommended her "·· 39 f". . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ~1A·f~f~YSSEARCH RESU LTs·"-------·---w··----·············---- ~ .- ---,~:"~~-o• E1;~;;;;;~~:;;-- - I I 12b ./·~! 31 ·~ Jane Boe [~~;;~~""I 1 · ~ l iI ~I 11 Jane Loe [~~~~.~~;;,;;'ci'". l ~"'~·--~. L_. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . w···········---~~-. -·-----·-·--·--·········------·~ 12 \ ·--------~·-·""""""'"""'·--·-·--····.·-~·-················----····-------------·--··-··----------------------···················---------· <handle> ~~ .......................-...--- ... ...-.- -~-.---.-, ................... . /(;:~:~r:~,\ {<~!,,.~& \\ it,..,,i '."-')' ' \ / t/.:k /,.I i. '\-.("' ·1' ~. •ll\ ~--·~i ! ., . (,..;·\t:\rnr~\ I -v--....-· . ........ ~\.li.~L-.-···-~·-·-·-·.h Age Location Gender/Age Seeking 3 2 ~_...... You and <handle> both like music, speak German, and mentioned "Play--doh" in your profiles. ·················-~-------------.............................................~! 21 U.S. Patent Feb. 12,2019 Sheet 4of11 US 10,203,854 B2 20 50 14 30 52 D [J 24 22 22 FIG. 4 62 GENERATE POOL 64 APPLY FILTER APPLY SCORING 66 ALGORITHMS 68 TABULATE SCORES APPLY ORDERING ALGORITHM 70 PRESENT LIST OF RESULTS 72 WAIT FOR USER ACTIVITY 74 FIG. 5 21 U.S. Patent Feb.12,2019 Sheet 5 of 11 US 10,203,854 B2 10 10 tinder tinder Sally 88 88 82 ®CD@ 86 FIG. 6 FIG. 7 10 C====> 10 tinder tinder It's a match! 88 lltll~ You and Sally Ideal 92 Send A Message or 94 ®CD@ Keep Playing @) @) FIG. 8 FIG. 9 21 U.S. Patent Feb.12,2019 Sheet 6of11 US 10,203,854 B2 1002 GENERATE USER POOL 1004 DISPLAY USER POOL 1006 RECEIVE USER PREFERENCE NO 1012 1014 STORE FIRST ALLOW COMMUNICATION USER S PREFERENCE 1 (1016 DO NOT ALLOW COMMUNICATION FIG. 10 21 U.S. Patent Feb.12,2019 Sheet 7of11 US 10,203,854 B2 1102 RECEIVE PAIR OF USER IDENTIFIERS 1104 OK NO 1106 1108 ALLOW DO NOT ALLOW COMMUNICATION COMMUNICATION FIG. 11 21 U.S. Patent Feb.12,2019 Sheet 8of11 US 10,203,854 B2 (c:b Matchmaker) ~ Sent Matches 1206 Tap on a friend 1204 r"--'- ~Search ----) 1202 Ashok Kumar John Stiles Clark Kent Richard Miles John Doe Steve Rogers FIG. 12A 21 U.S. Patent Feb.12,2019 Sheet 9of11 US 10,203,854 B2 (~ Matchmaker) ~ Sent Matches 1206 Jonathan Tap on a friend Smith 1204 Ashok Kumar John Stiles Clark Kent 1202 Richard Miles John Doe Steve Rogers FIG. 12B 21 U.S. Patent Feb. 12,2019 Sheet 10 of 11 US 10,203,854 B2 (ct Matchmaker) ~ Sent Matches 1206 Jonathan Mary Major Make a Match! Smith 1204 (Q, Search) 1202 Ashok Kumar John Stiles Clark Kent Richard Miles John Doe Steve Rogers FIG. 12C 21 U.S. Patent Feb. 12,2019 Sheet 11 of 11 US 10,203,854 B2 (..___ _ Re_ce_nt_ _) A-Z Ashok "Heyl How's it going? My nam ... 11 Q~ 1208 John 1208 Matched on 12/4 Jonathan 1208 Matched on 12/4 by: Ashok Kumar Ryan Match Pending ... '--'-'-'--~~1 by: Sean Rad FIG. 12D 21 US 10,203,854 B2 1 2 MATCHING PROCESS SYSTEM AND Too many nuisance requests may deter the user from further METHOD use of the system. Users with the most attractive profiles are oftentimes the ones that receive the most unwanted atten- RELATED APPLICATION tion. If the users with the most attractive profiles cease to use the system, the quality of the user pool deteriorates. This application is a continuation of U.S. application Ser. No. 15/676,773 filed Aug. 14, 2017 and entitled "Matching SUMMARY Process System And Method," which is a continuation of U.S. application Ser. No. 14/059,192 filed Oct. 21, 2013 and In one embodiment, a method for profile matching com- entitled "Matching Process System and Method;" which (a) 10 prises receiving a plurality of user profiles, each user profile is a continuation-in-part of U.S. application Ser. No. 12/339, comprising traits of a respective user. It also comprises 301 filed Dec. 19, 2008 and entitled "Matching Process receiving a preference indication for a first user profile of the System and Method," now U.S. Pat. No. 8,566,327, which plurality of user profiles. It further comprises determining a claims benefit under 35 U.S.C. § 119(e) to U.S. Provisional potential match user profile of the plurality of user profiles Application Ser. No. 61/015,099, entitled "Matching Pro- 15 based on the preference indication for the first user profile. cess System And Method," filed Dec. 19, 2007; and (b) The method also comprises presenting the potential match claims benefit under 35 U.S.C. 119(e) to U.S. Provisional user profile to a second user. Application Ser. No. 61/793,866 filed Mar. 15, 2013 and Receiving a preference indication for a first user profile entitled "Social Matching System and Method." 20 may include receiving from a third user a recommendation TECHNICAL FIELD of the first user profile for the second user. It may also include receiving from the second user a preference indica- This invention relates generally to computer matching tion for the first user profile. The method may further include systems and more particularly to a matching process system determining a score of a third user profile of the plurality of and method. 25 user profiles as a potential match for the second user. It may also include altering the score of the third user profile based BACKGROUND on the preference indication for the first user profile. In another embodiment, a method for profile matching Networking architectures have grown increasingly com- comprises receiving a plurality of user profiles, each user plex in communications environments. In recent years, a 30 profile comprising traits of a respective user. The method series of protocols and configurations have been developed further comprises receiving a request for matches from a in order to accommodate a diverse group of end users having first user, the first user associated with a first user profile. various networking needs. Many of these architectures have The method also comprises scoring the plurality of user gained significant notoriety because they can offer the profiles for potential matching with the first user based on benefits of automation, convenience, management, and 35 comparisons of the plurality of user profiles with the first enhanced consumer selections. user profile. It also comprises identifying a second user Certain network protocols may be used in order to allow an end user to conduct an on-line search of candidates to fill profile of the plurality of user profiles as a potential match a given vacancy. These protocols may relate to job searches, for the first user based on the scoring. The method further person finding services, real estate searches, or on-line 40 comprises identifying commonality between a third user dating. While some believe that on-line dating is simply a profile of the plurality of user profiles and the second user matter of matching supply and demand, there is statistical profile. In addition, the method comprises presenting to the and empirical evidence to suggest that successful on-line first user the third user profile as a potential match for the dating entails far more. first user. For example, people having similar and/or compatible 45 Depending on the specific features implemented, particu- character traits and values should be matched together. lar embodiments may exhibit some, none, or all of the However, effectively linking two participants together can following technical advantages. Various embodiments may prove to be a challenging endeavor. Coordinating a relation- be capable of dynamically updating match search results ship between two like-minded individuals can be a signifi- based on user activity. Some embodiments may be capable cant chore, as there are a number of obstacles and barriers 50 of enhancing match search results by reducing the impact of that must be overcome. restrictive user preferences. In addition, some embodiments One problem that has arisen is that matching services are may provide the ability to evaluate the attractiveness of limited to searching for matches only within their own potential matches. Various embodiments may be capable of platform. Thus, only people who have gone through the importing user profiles from other social-networking sys- process of signing up for the service are searched for a 55 terns. Some embodiments may be capable of generating the match. One solution to this problem is to have users register pool of users based on both explicit and implicit criteria in multiple services. This is problematic because it can be derived from other social networking systems. Other tech- expensive and time consuming for users. Further, the user nical advantages will be readily apparent to one skilled in the must then visit all of the services to monitor the search art from the following figures, description and claims. progress: this inefficiency may cause users to give up on the 60 search process. BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS Another problem is that the search results of these ser- vices contain many irrelevant entities to the searcher. This Reference is now made to the following description taken costs the user of the service time and may deter them from in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein continuing through all of the search results. 65 like reference numbers represent like parts, and which: Another problem is that large numbers of unwanted FIG. lA is an overview of one embodiment of the communication requests can become a nuisance to the user. matching system; 21 US 10,203,854 B2 3 4 FIG. lB shows the contents of the terminal from FIG. lA; example) associated with other users in order to make FIG. lC shows the contents of the matching server from matching decisions or elections. Data, as used herein, refers FIG. lA; to any type of numeric, voice, video, text, or script data, or FIG. lD is a diagram of a database from FIG. lC showing any other suitable information in any appropriate format that one embodiment of how a matching server stores a pool; may be communicated from one point to another. FIG. lE is a diagram of the display from FIG. lB showing In one embodiment, terminal 10 represents (and is inclu- one embodiment of the presentation of search results to a sive of) a personal computer that may be used to access user; network 24. Alternatively, terminal 10 may be representative FIG. lF is a diagram of the display from FIG. 1B showing of a cellular telephone, an electronic notebook, a laptop, a one embodiment of the presentation of details of a match 10 personal digital assistant (PDA), or any other suitable device result entity to a user; (wireless or otherwise: some of which can perform web FIG. 2 is a diagram depicting how a user may recommend browsing), component, or element capable of accessing one an entity to another user, in accordance with a particular or more elements within system 100. Interface 16, which embodiment; may be provided in conjunction with the items listed above, FIG. 3 is a diagram of the display from FIG. lB depicting 15 may further comprise any suitable interface for a human user how the user may be made aware of fate characteristics the such as a video camera, a microphone, a keyboard, a mouse, user shares with a match result entity, in accordance with a or any other appropriate equipment according to particular particular embodiment; configurations and arrangements. In addition, interface may FIG. 4 is a diagram depicting how two platforms may be be a unique element designed specifically for communica- searched for a match, in accordance with a particular 20 tions involving system 100. Such an element may be fab- embodiment; ricated or produced specifically for matching applications FIG. 5 is a flow chart indicating how a result list may be involving a user. generated, in accordance with a particular embodiment; Display 12, in one embodiment, is a computer monitor. FIG. 6 shows one embodiment of the matching system Alternatively, display 12 may be a projector, speaker, or displaying to a user the profile information of a second user; 25 other device that allows user 14 to appreciate information FIG. 7 is a diagram of the display from FIG. 6 showing that system 100 transmits. the effect of a left swipe gesture; Network 24 is a communicative platform operable to FIG. 8 is a diagram of the display from FIG. 6 showing exchange data or information emanating from user 14. the effect of a right swipe gesture; Network 24 could be a plain old telephone system (POTS). FIG. 9 shows the matching system displaying a match of 30 Transmission of information emanating from the user may a first user and a second user, in accordance with a particular be assisted by management associated with matching server embodiment; 20 or manually keyed into a telephone or other suitable FIG. 10 is a flowchart depicting a method for enabling electronic equipment. In other embodiments, network 24 communication between two users of the matching system could be any packet data network offering a communications of FIG. 1 based on a mutual expression of approval, in 35 interface or exchange between any two nodes in system 100. accordance with a particular embodiment; Network 24 may alternatively be any local area network FIG. 11 is a flowchart depicting a method for enabling (LAN), metropolitan area network (MAN), wide area net- communication between two users of the matching system work (WAN), wireless local area network (WLAN), virtual of FIG. 1 based on a user suggested matching proposal, in private network (VPN), intranet, or any other appropriate accordance with a particular embodiment; and 40 architecture or system that facilitates communications in a FIGS. 12A-D depict embodiments of a user interface. network or telephonic environment, including a combination of any networks or systems described above. In various DETAILED DESCRIPTION embodiments, network connections 22 may include, but are not limited to, wired and/or wireless mediums which may be Referring to FIG. lA, one embodiment of a matching 45 provisioned with routers and firewalls. system is shown. FIG. lA is a simplified block diagram of Matching server 20 is operable to receive and to commu- a system 100 for facilitating an on-line dating scenario in a nicate information to terminal 10. In some embodiments, network environment. In other embodiments, system 100 matching server 20 may comprise a plurality of servers or can be leveraged to identify and to evaluate suitable candi- other equipment, each performing different or the same dates in other areas (e.g. hiring/employment, recruiting, real 50 functions in order to receive and communicate information estate, general person searches, etc.). Users 14 interact with to terminal 10. Matching server 20 may include software a matching server 20 through terminals 10. FIG. lB is a and/or algorithms to achieve the operations for processing, diagram showing, in one embodiment, the contents of ter- communicating, delivering, gathering, uploading, maintain- minal 10. Terminal 10 comprises interface 16 (so that user ing, and/or generally managing data, as described herein. 14 may be able to interact with terminal 10) and display 12. 55 Alternatively, such operations and techniques may be FIG. lC is a diagram showing, in one embodiment, the achieved by any suitable hardware, component, device, contents of matching server 20. Matching server 20 com- application specific integrated circuit (ASIC), additional prises memory 26 and at least one CPU 28. Memory 26 may software, field programmable gate array (FPGA), server, store multiple databases, such as databases 26a and 26b. processor, algorithm, erasable programmable ROM Terminal 10 and matching server 20 are communicatively 60 (EPROM), electrically erasable programmable ROM (EE- coupled via network connections 22 and network 24. PROM), or any other suitable object that is operable to Users 14 are clients, customers, prospective customers, or facilitate such operations. entities wishing to participate in an on-line dating scenario In some embodiments, user 14, using terminal 10, regis- and/or to view information associated with other participants ters with matching server 20. Registration may include user in the system. Users 14 may also seek to access or to initiate 65 14 submitting information to matching server 20 about user a communication with other users that may be delivered via 14 as well as characteristics user 14 is seeking to be matched network 24. Users 14 may review data (such as profiles, for with. Such information may include a user handle, which 21 US 10,203,854 B2 5 6 may be a combination of characters that uniquely identifies server 20 provide more information about an entity in result user 14 to matching server 20. In various embodiments, list 31 by pressing the associated view button 33. Matching matching server 20 may be configured to collect this infor- server 20 may then communicate to user 14 more informa- mation; for example, matching server 20 may be configured tion about that entity by retrieving the information from to ask user 14 to respond to a series of questions. Matching memory 26. In FIG. lF, one embodiment of information that server 20 may be configured to receive the information matching server 20 provides for user 14 is shown. Using submitted by user 14 and create a profile for user 14 based display 12, user 14 views an entity from result list 31. on that information, storing the profile in memory 26. Matching server 20 may also provide user 14 with the ability As an example only, consider a case where user 14 is to contact the entity through a contact button 35. In one interested in participating in an on-line dating scenario. User 10 embodiment, when contact button 35 is utilized by user 14, 14 can access the Internet via terminal 10, travel to a web matching server 20 may provide user 14 with contact site managed by matching server 20, and begin the regis- information of the entity such as a telephone number or an tration process. As part of the registration process, matching e-mail address; in another embodiment, matching server 20 server 20 may ask user 14 a series of questions which may provide user with a way to directly contact the entity, identifies characteristics about user 14. Thus, matching 15 such as sending a message or providing voice or video server 20 may ask about the height, weight, age, location, communication between user 14 and the entity. Even further, and ethnicity ofuser 14. It may also ask about the birthplace, matching server 20 may be configured to allow user 14 to parents, eating habits, activities, and goals of user 14. express a negative preference for the entity through dislike Matching server 20 may further use the registration process button 36. In one embodiment, when, for example, dislike to discover what user 14 may be looking for in a match, such 20 button 36 is utilized by user 14, matching server 20 may as age, weight, height, location, ethnicity, diet, education, remove the entity from result list 31; in another embodiment, etc. Further, matching server 20 may ask user 14 to indicate the entity may be removed from pool 30 of users from which how important certain factors are when looking for a match. matches are identified. For example, matching server 20 may allow the user to As an example only, consider that user 14 has submitted indicate which characteristics in a potential match are a 25 a search request to matching server 20. Matching server 20 necessity. In another example, matching server 20 may ask, may search through pool 30, identify results, and commu- "How important is it that your match does not smoke?" nicate result list 31 to user 14 which would contain other Matching server 20 may also allow the user to indicate that users for whom matching server 20 had created a profile and certain characteristics are not important search criteria. For who were identified through a search and selection process. example, when asking user 14 about what height or weight 30 Next, user 14 may be interested in learning more about Jane user 14 is seeking in a match, matching server 20 may be Doe, entity 31a; thus, user 14 would click view button 33 configured to receive "not important" as a response. In yet associated with Jane Doe. Matching server 20 would receive another example, matching server 20 may allow user 14 to this request and respond by displaying Jane Doe's profile rate which factors are important on a numerical scale. For (stored in memory 26), as depicted in FIG. lF. Next, after example, matching server 20 may ask user 14 the following: 35 reading the profile, user 14 may be interested in contacting "On a scale of 1-10, how important is it that your match has Jane Doe; hence, user 14 would click contact button 35. the same education level as you?" In some embodiments, Matching server 20 would respond by allowing user 14 enter matching server 20 may specify that any number of ques- a message that matching server 20 would then communicate tions or requested descriptions are necessary before regis- to Jane Doe. tration may be concluded. As an example only, matching 40 Matching server 20 may even further be configured to server 20 may require that user 14 communicate the sex of allow user 14 to store a match result entity; in one embodi- user 14 and the sex user 14 prefers to be matched with. After ment, the system may be configured to allow user 14 to concluding the registration process, matching server 20 may utilize favorite button 34 that will add the desired match store the responses of user 14 as a profile. This same process result entity into another list. In another embodiment, uti- may be repeated by several different users 14, causing 45 lizing favorite button 34 will remove the associated match matching server 20 to contain a plurality of profiles. result entity from result list 31. FIG. lD depicts an embodiment in which matching server As an example only, user 14 may decide that he would 20 has a database 26a which contains a pool 30. Each entry like to save Jane Doe's profile so that he can review it later. in database 26a has a pool entity 30a along with information User 14 may click favorite button 34, and matching server concerning that entity. In one embodiment, each pool entity 50 20 may respond by placing Jane Doe's profile into a separate 30a-e represents a user and their profile. In some embodi- list. Further, matching server 20 may also remove Jane Doe ments, not all registered users are in pool 30. As discussed from user's 14 result list 31. As a result, user 14 may see further below, matching server 20 may use a selection another match result entity populate result list 31. This is process for including stored profiles in pool 30. As depicted beneficial because it may focus user 14 on evaluating new in FIG. lD, in this embodiment, the collection of users and 55 entities rather than reevaluating previously-known entities profiles forms pool 30 through which matching server may because the entities still appear in result list 31. perform various functions such as searches for matches. In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- Matching server 20 may be configured to search through figured to generate pool 30 by default according to various pool 30 and present matches to user 14. In FIG. lE, one characteristics and preferences of user 14 and other users of embodiment of this presentation is depicted as occurring 60 the system. Matching server 20 may also restrict entities through display 12. In various embodiments, matches may from being included in pool 30 based on the status of the be presented to user 14 utilizing other communication profile, or if user 14 has rejected or blocked an entity. schemes, such as electronic messages (i.e., e-mail) or text Matching server 20 may also restrict entities from the pool messages (i.e., utilizing SMS). In the depicted embodiment, that have blocked or rejected user 14. For example, match- a result list 31 is presented to user 14. A match result entity 65 ing server 20 may not allow profiles that are not in good 31a in a result list 31 may be associated with a view button standing to be included in pool 30. In other embodiments, 33. Using interface 16, user 14 may request that matching matching server 20 may be configured to generate pool 30 21 US 10,203,854 B2 7 8 by first choosing seeds. Seeds include, but are not limited to, user (Bob) had indicated a positive preference toward both profiles that user has sent a message to or profiles that user Lucy and Jane. Continuing the example, matching server 20 14 has expressed a preference for. Each seed is then com- is using a commonality threshold score of 70, which results pared to other entities to determine which entities will be in including Susan's profile (whose commonality score was included in pool 30. Any suitable method can be used to greater than the threshold score) in pool 30 and excluding determine which entities are included in pool 30. For Lucy's (whose commonality score was less than the thresh- example, any characteristics or algorithms described herein old score). Thus, user 14 gets the benefit of having more may form the basis of such a determination. As another entities identified that may be good matches. example, a commonality score may be generated based on In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- the comparison between each entity and the seed. In some 10 figured to include behavioral scales. These may include embodiments, this commonality score can be a measure of multi-item scales for materialism and gender-role tradition- how physically similar the users are to each other. This score alism. Such scales may provide the advantage of improved may be generated based on the number of users that have matching through deeper appreciation for the personality of expressed a positive preference for both the seed and the entities in the system. entity being compared. This score may also be generated 15 In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- based on whether the seed and entity have been viewed figured to analyze profile text for categories. It may search together in one session; further, the more times the seed and for a number of text strings and then associate the profile entity have been viewed together, the larger the common- with any number of categories. As an example only, match- ality score. The law of large numbers may allow for a vast ing server 20 may add any profile to the Cat category whose amount of such commonalities to be established over a few 20 text contains any of the following strings: days. Testing has revealed that using such commonality "cat" "cats" "cat." "cats." "cat," "cats," scoring methods has yielded at least one physical match for Matching server 20 may be configured to make it more 80% of users whose profile has been viewed at least once, likely that a profile will be in a result list if categories and between and 1000 physical matches for 60% of users associated with the profile are also categories found in the whose profile has been viewed at least once. Matching 25 user's profile who submitted the search request. server 20 may be further configured to allow entities that Matching server 20 may be configured to analyze one or have a commonality score above a certain threshold to more portions of the text of an entity's profile and generate become a part of pool 30. Matching server 20 may further a readability score that may be used in various ways, such be configured to update pool 30. In some embodiments, as in the process of searching for matches for user 14. In matching server 20 may do so by creating new seed entities 30 some embodiments, matching server 20 may analyze factors based on activity by user 14, such as indicating a preference such as, but not limited to: average number of words per for that entity. Further, matching server 20 may then com- sentence, total number of words with greater than three pare the chosen seed entity with other profiles stored in syllables, and total number of words in the profile. Matching matching server 20 and determine whether those profiles server 20 may also concatenate all of the collected responses will be included in pool 30 using a threshold score as 35 with a single space between them. It may further break the described above. At least one advantage realized by this text into sentences, words, and syllables. From these statis- embodiment is that user 14 is presented with updated tics, matching server 20 may also be configured to generate potential matches which increases the likelihood of user 14 a readability score by, in one embodiment, taking the aver- finding a suitable match. Another advantage present in age of the Flesch Kincaid Reading Ease test, the Flesch certain embodiments is that these updated potential matches 40 Kincaid Grade Level test, and the Gunning Fox score. Other have a greater likelihood of compatibility with user 14 since embodiments may utilize any other combination of these or they are chosen based on their commonality with entities other tests to determine a readability score. In some embodi- user 14 has expressed a preference for. ments, analyses may be used to determine the IQ of an As an example only, consider the case in which user 14 entity, the grade level of the writing, or how nervous the has registered, requested a search, and received from match- 45 entity generally is. An advantage of this embodiment may be ing server 20 results list 31. Then, user 14 decides to contact that the system provides user 14 with a metric for determin- Jane Doe and presses contact button 35. Aside from provid- ing approximate intelligence of other users. The readability ing user 14 with the ability to contact Jane Doe, matching score may be used, for example, in the matching process to server 20 will designate Jane Doe's profile as a seed. identify potential matches. Matching server 20 will then compare Jane Doe's profile to 50 As an example only, the Flesch Kincaid Reading Ease other profiles stored in memory 26 in order to identify other score may be generated by first computing the following users who may be similar to Jane Doe and thus be a good intermediate score: match for user 14. In this example, matching server 20 will 206.835-(1.015*[Average Words per Sentence])- generate a commonality score for each of these comparisons (84.6*[Average Syllables per Word]) and compare these scores to a preset threshold. If the 55 commonality score is lower than the threshold, that profile Then, the Flesch Kincaid Reading Ease score is determined will not be added to pool 30. However, if the commonality by using the following table: score is higher than the threshold, matching server 20 will add this profile to pool 30. As an example, further assume that the seed, Jane Doe, is being compared to another entity, 60 Flesh Kincaid Reading Ease Intermediate Score Condition Score Susan Smith. Based on the fact that both Susan and Jane have three users (Tom, Dick, and Harry) who have expressed <100 4 a positive preference for their profiles, matching server 20 <91 <81 generates a commonality score of 100 for the comparison. In <71 7 contrast, matching server 20 generated a commonality score 65 <66 of 50 for the comparison between the seed (Jane Doe) and <61 9 yet another entity, Lucy Goosey. This was because only one 21 US 10,203,854 B2 9 10 -continued server 20. Matching server 20 then analyzes each of these profiles by comparing it to a list of predefined keywords. Flesh Kincaid Reading Ease Matching server 20 then associates each word that matched Intermediate Score Condition Score the list of keywords with each profile. Now assume that <51 10 Harry performs a search. While fulfilling Harry's query, <31 13 matching server 20 evaluates Sally's profile for inclusion in <O 14 Harry's result list 31. This evaluation includes comparing Else 15 the list of keywords found in Harry's profile to the keywords found in Sally's profile. The more keywords that Harry and The Flesch Kincaid Grade Level may be computed accord- 10 Sally have in common, the more likely it will be that ing to the following: matching server 20 will include Sally's profile in Harry's result list 31. (0.39*[Average Words Per Sentence])+(ll.8*[Aver- age Syllables Per Word])-15.59 In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- figured to impute a level of physical attractiveness to an The Gunning Fox score may be computed according to the 15 entity in pool 30. Matching server 20 may be configured to following: monitor how frequent an entity in pool 30 has been viewed ([Average Words Per Sentence]+(([Nurnber Of as well as how many times that entity has been part of a Words With More Than 3 Syllables ]/[Number result list in order to impute the level of physical attractive- of Words In Entire Text])+l00))*0.4 ness. Matching server 20 may further be configured to As indicated, any suitable tests may be utilized m any 20 generate a score based on this data. Further, in some suitable manner to determine a readability score. embodiments, matching server 20 may impute physical In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- attractiveness to an entity based on the imputed physical figured to allow a user to interact with the result list of attractiveness scores of other entities. Matching server 20 another user. Matching server 20 may be configured to allow may compute an average of the imputed physical attractive- a user to express a preference for entities within a result list 25 ness scores of the other entities weighted by the common- of another user, and to indicate to the other user of this ality score between each of the other entities and the present preference. Thus, a user may be able to get advice from a entity. Empirical data indicates that people are more likely friend regarding what other users may constitute good to match with people of similar attractiveness. Thus, in many matches for the user and thus be able to find a better match. embodiments, a user may obtain an advantage in that they As an example only, consider FIG. lA and FIG. 2. Two 30 are able to be presented with potential matches that, accord- users 14, Harry and Sally, are connected to matching server ing to one measurement, are as attractive as the user. 20 via terminals 10. Display 12a is used by Harry while As an example only, consider a registered user, Sally, display 12b is used by Sally. Matching server 20 allows whose profile was created by matching server 20 in January. Sally to view Harry's result list 31 on her terminal in display Since that time, matching server 20 has recorded the number l2b. By pressing recommend button 37, Sally may indicate 35 of times Sally's profile has appeared in any user's result list a preference for one or more of the entities in result list 31. 31; assume that this has occurred 10 times. Further, match- Assume Sally presses recommend button 37 associated with ing server 20 has also recorded the number of times a user Jane Loe. After doing so, matching server 20 will notify has viewed Sally's profile by clicking view button 33 Harry of Sally's preference. On Harry's display 12a, match- associated with Sally's profile; assume that this has hap- ing server 20 will cause notification 39 to appear, associating 40 pened 5 times. In this manner, matching server 20 has it with Jane Loe. Notification 39 will indicate to Harry that constructed a ratio that represents the imputed physical Sally has recommended Jane Loe as a potential match. Harry attractiveness of Sally's profile. Still further, assume that may find Sally's preference helpful in determining which Harry, a registered user, now submits a query. Matching entities he should pursue further if, for example, he believes server 20 has evaluated the imputed physical attractiveness Sally understands the type of person he is looking for. 45 ratio of Harry's profile. When evaluating Sally's profile for In one embodiment, matching server 20 may be config- inclusion in result list 31 returned to Harry, matching server ured to analyze the profiles of both user 14 and the entities 20 will compare the imputed physical attractiveness of in pool 30 for keywords. Matching server 20 may be Sally's profile and Harry's profile. The more similar the configured to search through the profile of user 14 for ratios associated with Harry and Sally's profiles are to each keywords that relate to things such as activities and interests. 50 other, the more likely it is that Sally's profile will be selected Matching server 20 may generate a score for each entity in by matching server 20 to be in Harry's result list 31. In pool 30 based on a comparison between the list of keywords another example, assume that Sally's profile has not been found in user's 14 profile and a similarly-generated list of registered long enough to generate a meaningful imputed keywords of each entity in pool 30. In one embodiment, this physical attractiveness ratio. Matching server 20 may then is accomplished by storing a list of words in memory 26, and 55 generate an imputed physical attractiveness score based on using it to identify keywords in the searched profiles. In entities that Sally does have commonality scores with. This some embodiments, identified keywords may be used as a computed average may be weighted by the strength of the means of weighting various scores. As an example only, a commonality score between Sally and each entity with profile that contains the word "God" may be weighted much whom she has a commonality score. Continuing the differently than a profile which has merely indicated that 60 example, assume that Sally has a commonality score of 5 their religious preference is Christian. In various embodi- with Lucy and 10 with Julia. When matching server 20 ments, this may provide an advantage to user 14 in that user computes the Sally's average, it will give twice as much 14 is able to determine how similar he/she is with a potential weight to Julia's imputed physical attractiveness score than match. In addition, the keyword analysis may be used by the to Lucy's. system when searching and identifying matches for a user. 65 In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- As an example only, consider two registered users, Harry figured to make an entity in result list 31 more appealing to and Sally, both of whom have profiles stored in matching user 14 by pointing out coincidences in the profile data that 21 US 10,203,854 B2 11 12 give user 14 a sense of fate with the entity. In one embodi- In another embodiment, matching server 20 may be ment, matching server 20 may be configured to search for configured to compare the locations of user 14 and pool similar initials, birthplaces, birth dates, birth month, birth entity 30a in increments often miles. In yet another embodi- year, university, first names, last names, user handles, paren- ment, matching server 20 may be configured to score the tal occupations, and keywords to identify users who may location comparison in light of other factors; as an example, give another user a sense of fate. In other embodiments, matching system 20 may be configured to return a score matching server 20 may use the fate characteristics as a consistent with a 10 mile difference in location even though metric in the matching process. there is a 50 mile difference between user 14 and pool entity As an example only, assume that Harry is a registered user 30a if user 14 and pool entity 30a have the same income, who has performed a search. After matching server 20 10 education, and age. An advantage realized in several returns a result list, Harry chooses to learn more about one embodiments is that it better approximates how a user of the entities in the result list and clicks view button 33. evaluates entities. Entities that live further away are gener- Consider FIG. 3, which is only an example of information ally less appealing to a user; but, users may still be interested that matching server 20 may return to Harry after clicking if the entity matches their preferences in other categories. view button 33. In Harry's display 12, matching server 20 15 As an example only, consider a registered user, Harry, presents certain details about the profile. In particular, who submits a search request. While fulfilling this request, matching server 20 presents to Harry a fate notification 32 matching server 20 examines Sally's profile in pool 30, and which points out specific similarities between the profile of determines that the stated locations of Harry's and Sally's the entity and Harry's profile. Reading fate notification 32 profiles are 13 miles apart. Matching server 20 will give gives Harry a sense of familiarity which enhances his 20 Sally's profile a score as ifthe distance between them were appreciation for the profile. only 10 miles. However, in yet another example, Sally's In another example, fate characteristics may be used to profile may indicate that she lives 50 miles away from Harry. decide whether a profile in pool 30 is included in user's 14 Yet, matching server 20 also notes that both Harry and Sally result list 31. Assume that Harry is a registered user who has make $100,000 per year, have Master's degrees, and that submitted a matching query to matching server 20. While 25 Harry and Sally are one year apart in age (Harry is older). determining which entities to include in Harry's result list, Given these similarities, matching server 20 will give a score matching server 20 considers two profiles: Sally and Roxy. to Sally's profile that is consistent with a 20 mile difference Sally and Harry both have the same birth date, initials, and in location even though they are actually 50 miles apart. In have parents that work in the same profession. In contrast, this manner, matching server 20 takes into account empirical Roxy and Harry only share the same birth place. Matching 30 data that shows that people searching for matches who server 20 may be configured to award more points to Sally indicate that they want to see matches who live close to them than to Roxy based on these comparisons, making it more are still willing to pursue a potential match that lives far likely that Sally's profile will be included in Harry's result away if the potential match fits very closely with the other list. search criteria. In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- 35 In another embodiment, matching server 20 may be figured to evaluate the likelihood of contact between user 14 configured to evaluate the age difference between user 14 and an entity in pool 30. Matching server 20 may be and pool entity 30a using ranges as well as a sliding scale. configured to compare demographic data between user 14 By way of example only, matching server 20 may be and pool entity 30a. In another embodiment, matching configured to assign a high value to an age difference server 20 may be configured to weigh the demographic 40 between 0 and -5, while assigning a lower value to an age similarities and differences based on the sex of user 14. The difference between +2 and 0. An even lower value may be demographic data may include, but is not limited to, age, assigned to an age difference between -6 and -8. Even lower education, ethnicity, income, and location. values would be assigned incrementally as the age difference As an example only, assume that Harry and Sally are increases outside of the ranges discussed. The higher the registered users who have profiles in matching server 20. 45 assigned value is, the more likely it will be that pool entity Harry has submitted a search request to matching server 20. 30a will be included in result list 31. Yet another embodi- While fulfilling this request, matching server 20 evaluates ment may apply this combination of ranges and a sliding Sally's profile since her profile is in pool 30. As part of the scale but use different values and ranges depending on the evaluation, matching server 20 looks at the differences sex of user 14. between Harry and Sally's stated age, income, education, 50 As an example only, consider a situation in which a ethnicity, and location. In this example, Harry is 10 years registered user, Harry, requests a search to be performed. older than Sally, makes $10,000 more per year, and has a While fulfilling this request, matching server 20 evaluates Master's degree while Sally has a bachelor's degree. Even Sally's profile, which was in pool 30. As part of the with these disparities, matching server 20 will give Sally's evaluation, matching server 20 compares the ages of Harry profile a high score which makes it more likely that Sally's 55 and Sally, and determines that Harry is two years older than profile will appear in Harry's result list. However, if it was Sally; this determination leads to matching server 20 assign- Sally who submitted the search, and matching server 20 was ing, in this example, points to Sally's profile. Matching evaluating Harry's profile, a different score is possible. So, server 20 may also be configured to assign 50 points to if it were Sally who was 10 years older, made $10,000 more Sally's profile had she been five years younger than Harry; per year, and had a Master's degree while Harry had a 60 but, if she had been up to two years older than Harry, Bachelor's degree, matching server 20 would give a low matching server 20 may have been configured to assign 40 score to Harry's profile, making it less likely that his profile points to her profile. Matching server 20 may be further would appear in Sally's result list. Matching server 20 may configured to assign 30 points to Sally's profile if she was 6 be configured this way because empirical data has shown to 8 years younger than Harry. However, if Sally were more that these demographic differences do not have an equiva- 65 than 8 years younger than Harry, matching server 20 may be lent effect on the choices men and women make regarding configured to further decrease the number of points assigned matches. to her profile: if she was 9 years younger, then 25 points; if 21 US 10,203,854 B2 13 14 she was 10 years younger, 20 points; if she was 11 years matching server 20 may populate user's 14 result list from younger, 15 points; etc. The more points assigned to Sally's the pool only with profiles whose average rating is at 6 or profile, the more likely it is that her profile will appear in above. Another example of how matching server 20 may use Harry's result list. Thus, matching server 20 may be con- this data involves making it more likely that an entity will figured to assign a score based on age difference using a appear in a user's result list if the entity and that user have combination of ranges and a sliding scale. a similar average attractiveness rating. So, if a user has an In another example, matching server 20 may assign scores average rating of 6, then an entity with an average rating of differently if it was Sally who was searching and if it was 5 may be more likely to appear in the user's result list than Harry's profile that was being evaluated. In this example, an entity with an average rating of 2. matching server 20 may be configured to assign Harry's 10 In another example, assume that Harry is a registered user profile 50 points ifhe were between 1 and 5 years older than and has requested a search. While fulfilling this request, her. If he were 6 to 8 years older than her, matching server matching server 20 evaluates Sally's profile. As part of this 20 may assign 45 points. If he were greater than 8 years evaluation, matching server 20 notices that Sally's profile older than her, matching server 20 may assign points in the contains feedback from other users ranking the attractive- following fashion: if he was 9 years older, 40 points would 15 ness of Sally's profile. Matching server 20, in this example, be assigned; if he was 10 years older, 35 points would be averages that data; Sally's profile average is 6. Matching assigned; etc. However, if he was up to two years younger server 20 may then examine Harry's profile to determine a than Sally, matching server 20 may assign 50 points to his similar average. If Harry's profile has an average close to 6, profile. If he were more than two years younger, matching it will be more likely that matching server 20 will include server 20 may assign less points on a sliding scale: 45 points 20 Sally's profile in Harry's result list. If Harry's profile if he were 3 years younger, 40 points if he were 4 years average is lower than 6, it will be less likely that Sally's younger, etc. The more points assigned to Harry's profile, profile will be included in Harry's result list. If Harry's the more like it is that his profile will appear in Sally's result profile average is greater than 6, it will be even less likely list. This example illustrates how matching server 20 may be that Sally's profile will be included in Harry's result list. The configured to take the sex of user 14 into account when 25 more Harry's profile average deviates from that of Sally's, scoring based on age differences. the less likely it will be that matching server 20 will present In various embodiments, matching server 20 may be Sally's profile in Harry's result list. configured to evaluate the attractiveness of an entity in pool In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- 30 through collected feedback from other users. In one figured to analyze profile information and received activity embodiment, matching server 20 may present an entity to 30 information to construct "pairs" which link at least two user 14, prompting user 14 to rate the attractiveness of the profiles. These pairings may also be associated with a value entity on a scale from 1-9. This range gives the advantage of that ascertains the quality of the pairing. For example, a having a midpoint. Matching server 20 may further be pairing which results from one user viewing the profile of configured to collect such responses and store them; in one another user may be assigned a value that is less than a embodiment, matching server 20 may store the data in 35 pairing which results from a first user viewing the profile of memory 26, using a structure such as database 26b. Match- a second user when the second user has also viewed the first ing server 20 may further be configured to compute the user's profile. Matching server 20 may use these pairings in average of such responses for the entity, and store this order to generate search results for entities within and number as well. In various embodiments, these values may outside of the pairing. Each member of the pair may be used be used in order to help in the matching process. Empirical 40 as a seed entity for generating search results for users in data indicates that people are more likely to match with matching server 20. In various embodiments, an advantage people of similar attractiveness. Thus, in various embodi- may be realized as matching server 20 analyzes many of ments, users whose attractiveness rating are similar will be these pairs to develop dynamic results to users of the system, more likely to appear in each other's result list. Further, a the results being potentially more relevant as matching user may indicate that they only want profiles in their result 45 server 20 leverages the interaction between users and pro- list whose average attractiveness rating is higher than an files to generate search results. indicated threshold. Pairs may be formed from a variety of user activity As an example only, assume registered user, Harry, uses received by matching server 20. This activity may include: terminal 10, which in this example is Harry's personal profile views, mutual profile views, one-way double blind computer, and establishes communication with matching 50 communication, mutual double-blind communication, server 20. In this example, this communication occurs by declining double blind communication, one way wink, Harry using a Web browser to access a Web page controlled mutual wink, expressing disinterest in response to receiving by matching server 20. Sometime after visiting the Web a wink, one way favorite, and mutual favorite. Other suitable page, matching server 20 may present Harry with an option activity may also be received by matching server 20 and to rate the physical attractiveness of other users registered 55 utilized as a basis for generating pairs. with matching server 20. Using display 12 and interface 16, For example, Harry may be a registered user who has Harry may view profiles of registered users and rank them expressed a positive preference for Sally. Matching server on a scale of 1-9 by entering the values using interface 16; 20 may be configured to generate a pair which includes in this example, interface 16 comprises a mouse and/or a Harry and Sally. Matching server 20 may utilize this pair keyboard. After submitting this rating, matching server 20 60 when providing search results to other users. Betty may have will associate it with the profile and store it. Matching server requested matches, and Betty may be similar to Sally. 20 will also allow other users to rate profiles, thereby Matching server 20 may present Harry in Betty's result list collecting a plurality of rankings for profiles. Matching as a result of the pairing between Harry and Sally. Further, server 20 may use this data when trying to find matches for Jim may have executed a search and Jim may be similar to users. One example of this is that matching server 20 may 65 Harry. As a result of the pairing between Sally and Harry, allow user 14 to specify that he/she is searching for profiles matching server 20 may present Sally in Jim's list of search which have an average rating of 6 or above. In tum, results. 21 US 10,203,854 B2 15 16 In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- to Harry. This serves as an example of how preferences may figured to encourage user 14 to interact with entities in pool be identified based on user behavior. 30. For example, matching server 20 may present a list of In FIG. 4, one embodiment is disclosed wherein matching limited entities from pool 30 to user 14, but not present other server 20, with pool 30, may be configured to interact with entities to user 14 unless user 14 interacts with the already another platform, such as social networking platform 50, presented entities. Possible interaction with these entities containing a set 52 of users. Users 14 are communicatively may include viewing more information regarding the entity, coupled to matching server 20 and social networking plat- expressing a positive or negative preference for the entity, form 50. Matching server 20 may further be configured to and choosing to contact the entity. Other suitable forms of provide users of social networking platform 50 a service by interaction may also be utilized. For example, matching 10 which they may search for users within set 52 or within pool server 20 may prompt the user with a question about the list 30 using the algorithms and processing of matching server of entities, such as asking whether or not the user likes the 20. Matching server 20 may even further be configured to entity. Responses to such prompts may include "yes," allow users of matching server 20 to search through pool 30 "maybe," "no," "remove," and "remove other." The pre- and set 52. Matching server 20 may be configured to parse sented entities may be chosen using a variety of methods. 15 the profiles of the entities in set 52, collecting data and For example, the presented entities may be chosen based on applying algorithms. various scoring algorithms as described above. In addition, In another embodiment, matching server 20 may be presented entities may be chosen using predictive analysis, configured to allow users of social networking platform to such as logistical regression. Other techniques may be used interact with matching server 20 using social networking to determine the presented entities. For example, entities that 20 platform 50. This level of integration provides the advantage have been presented previously may be excluded. As of users not having to learn and sign up for a different another example, entities that have been blocked by user 14 platform. may also be excluded. In various embodiments, a combina- Social networking platform 50, in one embodiment, may tion of these techniques as well as others may be used to be a service which stores profiles of its users. This service determine the limited number of entities presented to user 25 may be further configured to provide access to the stored 14. profiles. In one embodiment, social networking platform 50 For example, Harry may be a registered user of the may also allow other services to interact with users of social matching system. Matching server 20 may be configured to networking platform 50 through social networking platform present to Harry a list of five entities that Harry must interact 50. with. Once Harry has interacted with these entities, match- 30 In one embodiment, matching server 20 may be config- ing server 20 may present five more entities for Harry to ured to collect requests from users of social networking interact with. Previously, Harry has blocked Sally, another platform 50 and perform a search through pool and set 52. registered user of the system. As a result, matching server 20 Matching server 20 may further be configured to present the may exclude Sally from being presented to Harry in the list results of this search from within social networking platform of five entities. Further, Harry has already interacted with 35 50. Matching server 20 may further be configured to present Betty, another registered user of the system: Harry sent a entities in the search result from pool 30 as if they were message to Betty utilizing matching server 20. As a result, entities of set 52; in one embodiment, matching server 20 Betty will be excluded from being presented to Harry in the may be configured to generate profiles of entities from pool list of five entities. Matching server 20 may then choose two 30 into set 52. Thus, users of social networking platform 50 of the five entities using scoring algorithms described above. 40 may view all of the entities in the search result, regardless For example, matching server 20 may choose Alice and Amy of their source (either from pool 30 or set 52), within the to be presented in the list of five entities because Alice and environment of social networking platform 50. Amy have received high scores when their profiles were As an example only, consider two users: Harry, for whom compared to Harry's profile. Matching server 20 may matching server 20 has created a profile, and Sally, who has choose the remaining three entities using predictive analysis. 45 a profile stored in social networking platform 50. From According to this example, matching server 20 may use within social networking platform 50, matching server 20 logistical regression to identify Carla, Christi, and Camela as presents to Sally the ability to perform a search which Sally the other three entities to present to Harry. Thus, in this uses. The results of this search are presented to Sally within example, Harry is presented with a list of five entities by social networking platform 50. In this example, Harry's matching server 20. Matching server 20 may not present 50 profile is displayed to Sally as a search result along with another set of five entities until Harry has interacted with other entities from set 52 though Harry's profile was from these five entities. Harry may interact with these entities in pool 30. In this example, matching server 20 uses the a variety of ways. For example, Harry may send a message algorithms discussed herein and searches through the pro- to Alice and send a "wink" to Amy. In addition, Harry may files stored in pool 30 and set 52. In order to display Harry's choose to view more information about Carla's profile, but 55 profile to Sally, matching server 20 creates a profile in set 52 express a negative preference towards Christi and Camela. using the data stored in Harry's profile in pool 30. Sally is After matching server 20 receives these types of interaction then able to interact with this newly created profile from with the presented five entities, another set of five entities within social networking platform 50 in the same manner as may be presented to Harry. she is other entities in set 52. In this example, matching server 20 may further be 60 In another embodiment, matching server 20 may be configured to process the user interaction provided by Harry. configured to allow its users to interact with social network- For example, matching server 20 may utilize Alice's profile ing platform 50 through matching server 20. In one embodi- as a seed entity to generate other possible entities to present ment, matching server 20 supplements pool 30 with set 52. to Harry since Harry sent a message to Alice. Thus, a benefit In yet another embodiment, entities from set 52 appear as is from presenting a the five entities to Harry in that the 65 entities of pool 30 to the user in their list of search results. interaction between Harry and these entities may be utilized In one embodiment, matching server 20 may be configured by matching server 20 to generate other entities for matching to generate profiles within pool 30 from entities of set 52; the 21 US 10,203,854 B2 17 18 system may be configured to do so through capabilities -continued provided by social networking platform 50, such as an application programming interface. Number of Points for Condition Ordering As an example only, consider two users: Harry, whose profile is stored in matching server 20, and Sally, whose Match result entity has +1048576 profile is stored in social networking platform 50. Harry commonality with an entity user has expressed a submits a search request to matching server 20. Matching preference for server 20 may return result list 31 to Harry, which, in this Both have the same ambition +128 example, contains an entity representing Sally's profile. Both have the same beliefs +16384 10 Same answer for Build +64 Matching server 20 may accomplish this by creating profiles Sarne answer for Car +1 in pool 30 that correspond to the profiles found in set 52. Both have the same diet +4 Once these profiles have been imported into pool 30, match- Both have the same +131072 preference for drinking ing server 20 may then search through pool 30. While doing alcohol so, matching server 20 applies the algorithms and scores 15 Same answer for Ethnicity +1024 discussed herein. Thus, in this example, matching server 20 Sarne answer for Fear +256 has been configured to both search and apply scoring Sarne answer for Hair +2 Sarne answer for Number of +524288 algorithms to entities in pool 30 and set 52. Further, in one children example, Harry is not able to distinguish that Sally's profile Sarne answer for morning +32 was originally stored in social networking platform 50. 20 Sarne answer for "must have" +32768 Rather, matching server 20 presents Sally's profile in the Sarne answer for "night out" +16 same manner as other profiles stored in pool 30. Thus, in this Sarne answer for "pets" +65536 Sarne answer for politics +8192 example, Harry may use favorite button 34, view button 33, Sarne answer for relationship +O and contact button 35 when interacting with Sally's profile status in the same manner as described above. 25 Sarne answer for "romance" +512 Sarne answer for smoking +262144 One advantage present in various embodiments is that a preferences user has a wider pool of entities to search through. Another Sarne answer for sports +8 advantage is that a user does not have to sign up with several interests platforms to search through the users on those platforms. Sarne answer for "system" +4096 FIG. 5 is a flowchart illustrating one embodiment of how 30 result list 31 may be generated. At step 62, matching server As an example only, consider a registered user, Harry, 20 generates pool 30, as described above. At step 64, who desires to perform a search. Before processing the matching server 20 applies a filter to pool 30, removing request, matching server 20 may ask Harry what sex he is certain entities; in various embodiments, this filter is based and what sex does he desire to be matched with; in this on user's 14 own sex and the sex user 14 desires to be 35 example, Harry responds that he is a male seeking a female. matched with. At step 66, matching server 20 may be After doing so, matching server 20 will generate pool 30 as configured to apply algorithms to pool 30 that will generate described above. Next, matching server 20 will apply a filter a plurality of scores for each entity in pool 30. In one to remove certain entities from pool 30. In this example, all embodiment, these algorithms may include analyzing the males will be removed from pool 30 since Harry is seeking text of the profiles of the entities in pool 30 to generate a 40 a female. Further, all females seeking females will be readability score, determining how attractive an entity of removed from pool 30 since Harry is a male. In other pool 30 is, or measuring how likely it is that user 14 will examples, other entities that are removed from pool 30 contact an entity of pool 30. At step 68, matching server 20 include entities that Harry has expressed a negative prefer- may be configured to collect all of the scores from step 66; ence for before, or entities that have expressed a negative in one embodiment, matching server 20 may use database 45 preference for Harry. After pool 30 has been filtered, match- 26b to store all of these scores. At step 70, matching server ing server applies a variety of scoring algorithms to the 20 may be configured to apply an ordering algorithm which entities remaining in pool 30. These algorithms may account will determine the order in which entities in result list 31 are for various comparisons such as those based on readability, presented to user 14. In one embodiment, this ordering likelihood to contact, fate, and keywords described above. algorithm is based, in part, on the scoring algorithms applied 50 Matching server 20 will then tabulate these scores, storing at step 66. The ordering algorithm assigns points to each them, in this example, in database 26b. Matching server 20 entity and orders them based on these values, constructing will then determine what order these entities are presented to result list 31. An embodiment of this ordering algorithm is Harry by applying an ordering algorithm. Here, matching surmnarized in the following table: server 20 assigns one ordering score to each entity by 55 examining the results of the scoring algorithms. After doing so, matching server will present result list 31 to Harry, where Number of Points for Condition Ordering the order of the entities that appear in the result list is based on the ordering algorithm. In this example, it is possible for Readability score 1 point +33554432 result list 31 to change. Consider another user, Sally, who higher than user Match result entity has +16777216 60 appears in Harry's result list. If Harry decides to add he_r into expressed a preference for a separate list by using favorite button 34, Sally will be the user removed from result list 31 (as described above). However, Match result entity has been +8388608 Sally will also become a seed entity from which entities may recommended by a friend of the user be added to pool 30 (as described above). Hence, matching User has viewed the details +2097152 65 server 20 will update the pool, apply the filters, apply the of match result entity scoring algorithms, tabulate the results, apply the ordering algorithm, and update result list 31. As another example, an 21 US 10,203,854 B2 19 20 entity may update their profile which can change result list as common friends, common interests, common network, 31. For example, assume Sally's profile had an ordering location, gender, sexuality, or age to evaluate potential algorithm score that placed her within the top 20 entities in matches between users 14. Matching server 20 may also use result list 31. Sally then changes her profile which results in implicit signals such as for whom a user 14 expresses keywords that match Harry's profile being added to her approval and disapproval. Implicit signals may also include profile. Matching server 20 will then update her scoring facial recognition algorithms to detect ethnicity, hair color, algorithms. In this example, the change in Sally's profile and eye color, etc., of profiles that user 14 has expressed interest resulting increase in keyword matches with Harry's profile Ill. significantly increased her score. This was then reflected in In particular embodiments, matching server 20 may have the ordering algorithm as it was also applied to the updated 10 users 14 to link their user profiles to an existing profile profile. Afterwards, Sally's profile is now placed within the within social networking platform 50. Matching server 20 top 5 entities in result list 31. may be configured to generate and add profiles to user In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- profile pool 30 from entities of set 52; the system may be figured to receive required characteristics from user 14 configured to do so through capabilities provided by social regarding a match. User 14 may be allowed to specify such 15 networking platform 50, such as an application program- restrictions based upon any number of characteristics, ming interface. One advantage of linking is that matching including those described herein. For example, matching server 20 can use the authentication features provided by server 20 may allow user 14 to specify that entities that social networking platform 50. For example, creating a user indicate they have children should not be displayed. In profile on matching server 20 containing false information another example, user 14 may specify that only entities 20 becomes harder when the information must come from between the ages of 20 and 30 should be present in result list another verifiable and peer monitored source such as social 31. In some embodiments, matching server 20 may imple- networking platform 50. ment these restrictions in step 64 of FIG. 5. In other In some embodiments, matching server 20 may allow a embodiments, however, matching server 20 may refuse to user 14 to propose a match between two of his connections apply these restrictions to certain entities based on the 25 within social networking platform 50. For example, Harry characteristics of the entities. Any number of characteristics, may be friends with both Bob and Sally within social including those described herein, may form the basis upon networking platform 50. Harry believes Bob and Sally are a which matching server 20 decides not to apply the restric- good match and therefore instructs matching server 20 to tions submitted by user 14. As an example only, matching create a match between the two users in user profile pool 30. server 20 may ignore the restrictions ifthe entity has a high 30 Once matched, matching server 20 allows Harry and Sally enough attractiveness rating. In another example, though to communicate with each other. user 14 has requested that no profiles which are located more In some embodiments, matching server 20 may be con- than 50 miles away should be present in result list 31, figured to apply a relevance algorithm which determines the matching server 20 may include such profiles because those content and order in which matching server 20 displays profiles have over 5 matching keywords, a high attractive- 35 potential matches to user 14. A relevance algorithm may be ness rating, and have specified the same life goals as user 14. based on both explicit and implicit signals from user 14. Thus, in some embodiments, matching server 20 may refuse Explicit signals include information entered by user 14 as to apply restrictions submitted by user 14 based on any part of its user profile, such as height, weight, age, location, combination of characteristics or algorithms. income, and ethnicity. Explicit signals may also include An advantage present in many embodiments is that 40 information about the characteristics user 14 is seeking in a through taking into account various factors when scoring match, such as gender, hair color, eye color, or occupation. potential matches and using only very few strict filters, a Explicit signals may also be entered by user 14 as part of a large amount of result entities may be returned to the user. search request. For example, user 14 may request matching A further advantage is that the ordering algorithm will put server 20 limit the pool of potential matches to those users the most relevant search results first, saving the user time. 45 within a fixed geographic region. Matching server 20 is FIGS. 6-9 depict embodiments of a user interface pre- operable to compare geographic positions associated with sented to users of the matching system discussed above with the plurality of user profiles in user profile pool 30 with a respect to FIGS. 1and4. According to some embodiments, geographic position associated with user 14. Explicit signals users 14 interact with matching server 20 through interface may be imported from a social networking platform 50, such 16 presented by terminal 10. In addition to the embodiments 50 as the number of shared entities in a social graph of user 14. of interface 16 described above in relation to FIG. lA, Implicit signals may be based on the behavior of user 14 interface 16 may also comprise a touch screen interface either within system 100 or other social networking plat- operable to detect and receive touch input such as a tap or forms 50. For example, if user 14 has expressed disapproval a swiping gesture. In some embodiments, matching server of a user profile in the past, matching server 20 may no 20 may import profiles from other social networking sys- 55 longer present the disapproved of user profile to user 14 in terns. This level of integration provides the advantage of future searches. In various embodiments, matching server 20 users only having to update their profile information in one may be configured to evaluate the attractiveness of a user in place. For example, when user 14 updates his profile within user profile pool 30 through collected feedback from other social networking platform 50, matching server 20 is also users. For example, matching server 20 may rank a user able to access the updated profile information. 60 profile that receives more likes as more relevant than a user In some embodiments, matching server 20 may further be profile that receives fewer likes. In particular embodiments, configured, as part of the user registration process, to link to matching server 20 may assign a higher relevance to a user a user's existing profile within social networking platform profile if the other user has previously expressed a prefer- 50. Matching server 20 may be configured to parse the ence for user 14. As an example, user Harry may have profiles of the users in set 52, e.g., collecting data and 65 previously expressed a preference for user Sally. If Sally applying algorithms. For example, matching server 20 may requests a set of user profiles from matching server 20, and use explicit signals from social networking platform 50 such Harry's user profile is included in the set, matching server 20 21 US 10,203,854 B2 21 22 may assign Harry's user profile a higher relevance based on users' profile information as well. Harry may request more his expression of preference for Sally. This can result in information about Sally by pressing information button 84. Harry's profile being presented to Sally sooner than other- Harry may also indicate his preference to communicate wise would have occurred. This may be advantageous in that directly with Sally by selecting like button 86. In another it can increase the chances of a match without compromising example, Harry may expand his search to a twenty-five mile a user's feelings of privacy when expressing preferences for radius to meet people in his town, not just his immediate potential matches. In some embodiments, matching server vicinity. 20 may be configured to use the fate characteristics as a FIGS. 7 and 8 are diagrams of embodiments of the display metric in the relevance algorithm. from FIG. 6 showing the effect of a left swipe gesture (FIG. In some embodiments, terminal 10 is operable to deter- 10 7) and the effect of a right swipe gesture (FIG. 8). In one mine its own geographic location by a global positioning embodiment, users 14 may navigate through the set of satellite navigational system. Terminal 10 may also deter- presented users by swiping through stack of cards 88. Users mine its own geographic location using cellphone-based 14 may also express approval of a presented user by per- triangulation techniques, Wi-Fi based positioning system, forming a right swipe gesture or express disapproval by Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) system, or network 15 performing a left swipe gesture. In some embodiments, user addresses assigned by a service provider. 14 performs a swiping gesture by moving a finger or other FIG. 6 shows one embodiment of system 100 displaying suitable object across a screen of terminal 10. Other suitable to a user the profile information of a second user. Matching gestures or marmers of interacting with terminal 10 may be server 20 may be configured to search through its plurality used (e.g., tapping on portions of a screen of terminal 10). of profiles and present suggested matches to user 14. In FIG. 20 In some embodiments, matching server 20 creates a 6, one embodiment of this presentation is depicted as match between two users 14 after both users 14 have occurring through the display of terminal 10. In this embodi- expressed a preference for each other's profiles using like ment, a plurality of user profiles is presented to user 14. button 86 or the swiping gesture associated with like button Using terminal 10, user 14 may request that matching server 86. When matching server 20 creates a match, it may also 20 present a subset of users from user profile pool 30 based 25 provide the matched users with the ability to contact each on specified search parameters. The display may show an other through a contact button. In some embodiments, when image of a suggested user and one or more aspects of the a match is created, matching server 20 may immediately (or suggested user's profile information. In some embodiments, soon thereafter) present an option to users 14 that have been the combination of image and one or more aspects of profile matched to engage in a communication session (e.g., a chat, information is displayed as "card" 88 representing the 30 an SMS message, an e-mail, a telephone call, a voice suggested user. A set of suggested users may be displayed as communication session, a video communication session). stack of cards 88. User 14 may view information regarding This may be done in response to a first user 14 expressing one suggested user at a time or more than one of the a preference for a second user 14 that has already expressed suggested users at a time. User 14 may be presented with a a preference for the first user 14. summary of information regarding a suggested user. The 35 FIG. 9 shows one embodiment of matching system 100 summary may include one or more of: a picture, an icon, displaying a match of a first user and a second user, in name, location information, gender, physical attributes, hob- accordance with a particular embodiment. Matching server bies, or other profile information. 20 may provide first user 14 and second user 14 with each In some embodiments, terminal 10 may also display other's contact information such as a telephone number or "information" button 84 which allows user 14 to request 40 an e-mail address. Matching server 20 may also provide both matching server 20 to retrieve and display more information first and second users 14 with a way to directly contact the about the presented user from user profile pool 30. In other, such as sending a message or providing voice or video addition, user 14 may express approval or disapproval for a communication between the first and second user. In some presented user. Expressing approval or disapproval can be embodiments, direct communication may be initiated by accomplished through various methods. For example, ter- 45 pressing "Send a Message" button 92. Alternatively, a user minal 10 may display "like" button 86 (represented by a may choose to continue browsing the set of presented users green heart icon) and "dislike" button (represented by a red by pressing "Keep Playing" button 94. "X" icon). Pressing like button 86 indicates to matching For example, user Harry may indicate a preference to server 20 that user 14 approves of and is interested in communicate directly with user Sally by selecting like communication with the presented user. Pressing dislike 50 button 86. At this point, Sally is not aware that Harry button 82 indicates that user 14 disapproves of and does not expressed a preference for her. If Sally also requests match- want to communicate with the presented user. The approval ing server 20 present her with a set of possible matches, preference of user 14 is anonymous in that matching server Harry may appear in her set. Sally may select like button 86 20 does not inform users 14 whether other users have (or perform an associated swiping gesture) when viewing expressed approval or disapproval for them. 55 Harry's profile. Matching server 20 may then notify both As an example, consider two registered users, Harry and Harry and Sally that a match occurred. At this point, both Sally, both of whom have profiles stored in matching server Harry and Sally are made aware that they each expressed 20. Harry is at a restaurant and requests matching server 20 approval of each other's profile. Matching server 20 then to present him users within a one-mile radius of his location. enables Harry and Sally to directly communicate with each Matching server 20 compares a geographic position associ- 60 other (e.g., through a private chat interface). ated with Sally with a geographic position associated with In some embodiments, one advantage of a system dis- Harry. If Sally is currently within the one-mile radius of closing preferences of profiles to users when mutual Harry and matching server 20 determines her profile infor- approval has occurred is that a user can feel more secure in mation matches Harry's preferences, matching server 20 their privacy knowing that their preferences will be dis- will present Harry one or more aspects of Sally's profile 65 closed to those that have expressed a preference for that user. information. If other users also meet the search criteria, As an example, a user can avoid embarrassment if their matching server 20 will present one or more aspects of those expression of preference for a profile was not reciprocated. 21 US 10,203,854 B2 23 24 This may lead to users more actively expressing their matched at step 1106. If matching server 20 determines the preferences. Such increased activity can be used by the suggested matching proposal is not valid, matching server matching system to generate more potential matches or 20 does not create a match and does not allow communi- better rankings of potential matches. In some embodiments, cation between second and third users 14 at step 1108. In matching server 20 may be configured to allow direct some embodiments, step 1104 may not be performed. For communication between users when there has been a mutual example, if a matching proposal is suggested, then matching expression of preference. This may be advantageous server 20 may perform step 1106 with respect to the users because users can avoid browsing, deleting, or responding to suggested to be matched. unwanted messages. FIGS. 12A-D depict embodiments of a user interface. In FIG. 10 is a flowchart depicting a method for enabling 10 some embodiments, the interface allows user 14 of terminal communication between two users of the matching system 10 to enable communication between other users 14 by of FIG. 1 based on a mutual expression of approval, in suggesting a matching proposal to matching server 20. accordance with a particular embodiment. At step 1002, in some embodiments, matching server 20 FIG. 12A illustrates one embodiment of an interface for generates a set of user profiles in response to a request for 15 proposing a match between two users. The interface is matching from a first user 14. At step 1004, matching server divided into three sections: connection list area 1202, search 20 presents the set of user profiles to first user 14. Matching area 1204, and suggestion area 1206. Connection list area server 20 determines the contents and ordering of the set of 1202 displays a set of connections user 14 has with other users profiles by using, e.g., the relevance algorithms users of, e.g., system 100 of FIG. 1. Connections may be described above in the discussion of FIG. 4. For example, 20 based on prior matches created by matching server 20. matching server 20 may only include user profiles whose Connections may also be imported from another social contents indicate location within a specified geographical networking platform 50. Search area 1204 enables user 14 to radius and order the presentation of those user profiles based search for particular connections within system 100. In some on the number of mutual friends in common with first user embodiments, the search may be limited to just the connec- 14. 25 tions displayed in connection list area 1202. Suggestion area At step 1006, in some embodiments, matching server 20 1206 displays the connections that user 14 may use to form receives an indication of the preference of first user 14 a suggested match. regarding a presented user profile. Matching server deter- FIG. 12B illustrates suggestion area 1206 displaying a mines if first user 14 expresses approval or disapproval of first selected user (i.e., "Jonathan Smith") of a proposed the presented user profile at step 1008. If first user 14 30 match between two users. User 14 identifies the first selected disapproves of the presented user profile then a match is not user through a set of interactions with connection list area made and, at step 1016, matching server 20 will not allow 1202, search area 1204, and suggestion area 1206. For communication between the two users. If first user 14 example, user 14 may locate a connection in connection list expresses approval for the presented user profile at step 1008, then matching server 20 will check if second user 14 35 area 1202 by typing a user handle in search area 1204. User represented by the presented user profile has already 14 may then add the connection to suggestion area 1206. In expressed a preference for first user 14 at step 1010. If some embodiments, user 14 may drag the connection from matching server 20 detects a mutual expression of approval connection list area 1202 to suggestion area 1206. then a match is made between first and second users 14. FIG. 12C illustrates suggestion area 1206 displaying a Then, at step 1012, matching server 20 allows private 40 proposed match between two suggested users (i.e., "Jona- communications between first and second users 14. If a than Smith" and "Mary Major"). For example, user 14 may mutual expression of approval is not detected at step 1010, locate a second connection in connect list area 1202 that user then matching server 20 stores the preference of first user 14 14 believes is a match for the first connection. User 14 may regarding the presented user profile for future comparison add the second connection to suggestion area 1206. When and continues to step 1016 where private communications 45 both connections are added to suggestion area 1206, match- are not yet allowed. ing server 20 may create a match between the two users and FIG. 11 is a flowchart depicting a method for enabling allow communication between them. communication between two users of the matching system FIG. 12D illustrates an example communication interface of FIG. 1 based on a matching proposal suggested by a user, between users of the matching system. User 14 is presented in accordance with a particular embodiment. At step 1102, 50 with chat box 1208 for each of the matches that exist for user matching server 20 receives interactions from first user 14. 14. Users 14 may communicate with each other through chat Interactions from first user 14 may include identification of box 1208. In some embodiments, users 14 may communi- user profiles for two other users 14. For example, Harry is cate through SMS messages, e-mail, telephone calls, online connected to both Bob and Sally within social networking voice communication sessions, and/or video communication platform 50. Harry believes Bob and Sally are a good match 55 sess10ns. for each other and generates a matching proposal requesting Modifications, additions, or omissions may be made to the matching server 20 to create a match between Bob and Sally. methods described herein (such as those described above At step 1104, in some embodiments, matching server with respect to FIGS. 5, 10 and 11) without departing from validates the suggested matching proposal between second the scope of the disclosure. For example, the steps may be and third users 14. For example, matching server 20 verifies 60 combined, modified, or deleted where appropriate, and addi- that Bob's profile indicates that he wants to be matched with tional steps may be added. Additionally, the steps may be a woman, and Sally's profile indicates that she wants to be performed in any suitable order without departing from the matched with a man. Matching server may also verify that scope of the present disclosure. Sally has not previously expressed disapproval for Bob. If Although several embodiments have been illustrated and matching server 20 determines the suggested matching 65 described in detail, it will be recognized that substitutions proposal is valid, matching server 20 creates the match and and alterations are possible without departing from the spirit allows communication between the users 14 suggested to be and scope of the appended claims. 21 US 10,203,854 B2 25 26 What is claimed is: 2. The medium of claim 1, wherein at least one or more 1. A non-transitory computer-readable medium compris- of the plurality of user on-line dating profiles is associated ing instructions that, when executed by a processor, are with a social networking platform. configured to: 3. The medium of claim 1, further comprising instructions electronically receive a plurality of user online-dating configured to, in response to determining to allow the first profiles, each profile comprising traits of a respective user to communicate with the second user, cause the display user; of a graphical notification on the graphical user interface of electronically receive a first request for matching, the first the first electronic device of the first user, the graphical request electronically submitted by a first user using a notification indicating that a match exists between the first first electronic device; 10 user and the second user and presenting an option for the determine from the plurality of user online-dating profiles first user to communicate with the second user. a set of potential matches for the first user; 4. A system for profile matching, comprising: cause the display of a graphical representation of a first an interface operable to: potential match of the set of potential matches to the electronically receive a plurality of user online-dating first user on a graphical user interface of the first 15 profiles, each profile comprising traits of a respective electronic device, the first potential match correspond- user; and ing to a second user; electronically receive a first request for matching, the first receive from the first electronic device of the first user a request electronically submitted by a first user using a first positive preference indication associated with the first electronic device; graphical representation of the second user on the 20 a processor coupled to the interface and operable to: graphical user interface, the first positive preference determine from the plurality of user online-dating profiles indication associated with a first gesture performed on a set of potential matches for the first user; and the graphical user interface, wherein the first gesture cause the display of a graphical representation of a first comprises a first swiping gesture; potential match of the set of potential matches to the cause the graphical user interface to display a graphical 25 first user on a graphical user interface of the first representation of a second potential match of the set of electronic device, the first potential match correspond- potential matches instead of the graphical representa- ing to a second user; tion of the first potential match; wherein the interface is further operable to receive from receive from a second electronic device of the second user the first electronic device of the first user a first positive a positive preference indication regarding the first user; 30 preference indication associated with the graphical determine to allow the first user to communicate with the representation of the second user on the graphical user second user in response to receiving from the first interface, the first positive preference indication asso- electronic device of the first user the first positive ciated with a first gesture performed on the graphical preference indication regarding the second user and user interface, wherein the first gesture comprises a first receiving from the second electronic device of the 35 swiping gesture; second user the positive preference indication regard- wherein the processor is further operable to cause the ing the first user; graphical user interface to display a graphical repre- receive from the first electronic device of the first user a sentation of a second potential match of the set of first negative preference indication associated with a potential matches instead of the graphical representa- graphical representation of a third potential match on 40 tion of the first potential match; the graphical user interface, the first negative prefer- wherein the interface is further operable to receive from ence indication associated with a second gesture per- a second electronic device of the second user a positive formed on the graphical user interface, the third poten- preference indication regarding the first user; tial match corresponding to a third user, wherein the wherein the processor is further operable to determine to second gesture comprises a second swiping gesture 45 allow the first user to communicate with the second different than the first swiping gesture; user in response to receiving from the first electronic without allowing communication between the first user device of the first user the first positive preference and the third user, receive from the first electronic indication regarding the second user and receiving from device of the first user a second positive preference the second electronic device of the second user the indication associated with a graphical representation of 50 positive preference indication regarding the first user; a fourth potential match on the graphical user interface, and the second positive preference indication associated wherein the interface is further operable to: with the first gesture performed on the graphical user receive from the first electronic device of the first user interface, the fourth potential match corresponding to a a first negative preference indication associated with fourth user; 55 a graphical representation of a third potential match receive from a third electronic device of the fourth user a on the graphical user interface, the first negative second negative preference indication associated with a preference indication associated with a second ges- graphical representation of the first user; and ture performed on the graphical user interface, the without allowing communication between the first user third potential match corresponding to a third user, and the fourth user, receive from the first electronic 60 wherein the second gesture comprises a second swip- device of the first user a third positive preference ing gesture different than the first swiping gesture; indication associated with a graphical representation of without allowing communication between the first user a fifth potential match on the graphical user interface, and the third user, receive from the first electronic the third positive preference indication associated with device of the first user a second positive preference the first gesture performed on the graphical user inter- 65 indication associated with a graphical representation face, the fifth potential match corresponding to a fifth of a fourth potential match on the graphical user user. interface, the second positive preference indication 21 US 10,203,854 B2 27 28 associated with the first gesture performed on the of the first user a second positive preference indication graphical user interface, the fourth potential match associated with a graphical representation of a fourth corresponding to a fourth user; potential match on the graphical user interface, the receive from a third electronic device of the fourth user second positive preference indication associated with a second negative preference indication associated the first gesture performed on the graphical user inter- with a graphical representation of the first user; and face, the fourth potential match corresponding to a without allowing communication between the first user fourth user; and the fourth user, receive from the first electronic wherein there is a fourth user expression of a negative device of the first user a third positive preference preference for the first user; and indication associated with a graphical representation 10 without allowing communication between the first user of a fifth potential match on the graphical user and the fourth user, transmitting from the first elec- interface, the third positive preference indication tronic device of the first user a third positive preference associated with the first gesture performed on the indication associated with a graphical representation of graphical user interface, the fifth potential match a fifth potential match on the graphical user interface, corresponding to a fifth user. 15 the third positive preference indication associated with 5. The system of claim 4, wherein at least one or more of the first gesture performed on the graphical user inter- the plurality of user on-line dating profiles is associated with face, the fifth potential match corresponding to a fifth a social networking platform. user. 6. The system of claim 4, wherein the processor is further 8. The method of claim 7, wherein at least one or more of operable to, in response to determining to allow the first user 20 the plurality of user on-line dating profiles is associated with to communicate with the second user, cause the display of a a social networking platform. graphical notification on the graphical user interface of the 9. The method of claim 7, further comprising causing the first electronic device of the first user, the graphical notifi- display of a graphical notification on the graphical user cation indicating that a match exists between the first user interface of the first electronic device of the first user, the and the second user and presenting an option for the first 25 graphical notification indicating that a match exists between user to communicate with the second user. the first user and the second user and presenting an option 7. A computer implemented method of profile matching, for the first user to communicate with the second user. comprising: 10. A system for profile matching, comprising: electronically transmitting from a first electronic device of an interface operable to electronically transmit from a first a first user a first request for matching; 30 electronic device of a first user a first request for causing the display of a graphical representation of a first matching; potential match of a set of potential matches to the first a processor coupled to the interface and operable to cause user on a graphical user interface of the first electronic the display of a graphical representation of a first device, the first potential match corresponding to a potential match of a set of potential matches to the first second user; 35 user on a graphical user interface of the first electronic wherein the set of potential matches for the first user are device, the first potential match corresponding to a determined from a plurality of user online-dating pro- second user; files in response to the first request for matching; wherein the set of potential matches for the first user are wherein the plurality of user online-dating profiles each determined from a plurality of user online-dating pro- comprises traits of a respective user; 40 files in response to the first request for matching; transmitting from the first electronic device of the first wherein the plurality of user online-dating profiles each user a first positive preference indication associated comprises traits of a respective user; with the graphical representation of the second user on wherein the interface is further operable to transmit from the graphical user interface, the first positive preference the first electronic device of the first user a first positive indication associated with a first gesture performed on 45 preference indication associated with the graphical the graphical user interface, wherein the first gesture representation of the second user on the graphical user comprises a first swiping gesture; interface, the first positive preference indication asso- causing the display on the graphical user interface of a ciated with a first gesture performed on the graphical graphical representation of a second potential match of user interface, wherein the first gesture comprises a first the set of potential matches instead of the graphical 50 swiping gesture; representation of the first potential match; wherein the processor is further operable to: allowing the first user to communicate with the second cause the display on the graphical user interface of a user in response to the first electronic device of the first graphical representation of a second potential match user transmitting the first positive preference indication of the set of potential matches instead of the graphi- regarding the second user and a second user expressing 55 cal representation of the first potential match; and a positive preference regarding the first user; allow the first user to communicate with the second transmitting from the first electronic device of the first user in response to the first electronic device of the user a first negative preference indication associated first user transmitting the first positive preference with a graphical representation of a third potential indication regarding the second user and a second match on the graphical user interface, the first negative 60 user expressing a positive preference regarding the preference indication associated with a second gesture first user; performed on the graphical user interface, the third wherein the interface is further operable to: potential match corresponding to a third user, wherein transmit from the first electronic device of the first user the second gesture comprises a second swiping gesture a first negative preference indication associated with different than the first swiping gesture; 65 a graphical representation of a third potential match without allowing the first user to communicate with the on the graphical user interface, the first negative third user, transmitting from the first electronic device preference indication associated with a second ges- 21 US 10,203,854 B2 29 30 ture performed on the graphical user interface, the fourth user, transmit from the first electronic device of third potential match corresponding to a third user, the first user a third positive preference indication wherein the second gesture comprises a second swip- associated with a graphical representation of a fifth ing gesture different than the first swiping gesture; potential match on the graphical user interface, the and third positive preference indication associated with the without allowing the first user to communicate with the first gesture performed on the graphical user interface, third user, transmit from the first electronic device of the fifth potential match corresponding to a fifth user. the first user a second positive preference indication 11. The system of claim 10, wherein at least one or more associated with a graphical representation of a fourth of the plurality of user on-line dating profiles is associated potential match on the graphical user interface, the 10 with a social networking platform. second positive preference indication associated 12. The system of claim 10, wherein the processor is with the first gesture performed on the graphical user further operable to cause the display of a graphical notifi- interface, the fourth potential match corresponding cation on the graphical user interface of the first electronic to a fourth user; device of the first user, the graphical notification indicating wherein there is a fourth user expression of a negative 15 that a match exists between the first user and the second user preference for the first user; and and presenting an option for the first user to communicate wherein the interface is further operable to, without with the second user. allowing communication between the first user and the * * * * * 21 Exhibit D 21 SWIPE Reg. No. 4,465,926 TINDER, INC. (DELAWARE coRPoRATION) P.O. BOX 25458 Registered Jan. 14, 2014 DALLAS, TX 75225 New Cert. Apr. 7, 2015 FOR: COMPUTER APPLICATION SOFTWARE FOR MOBILE DEVICES, NAMELY, SOFT- WARE FOR SOCIAL INTRODUCTION AND DATING SERVICES, IN CLASS 9 (U.S. CLS. Int. Cl.: 9 21, 23, 26, 36 AND 38). FIRST USE 4-8-2013; IN COMMERCE 4-8-2013. TRADEMARK THE MARK CONSISTS OF STANDARD CHARACTERS WITHOUT CLAIM TO ANY PAR- PRINCIPAL REGISTER TICULAR FONT, STYLE, SIZE, OR COLOR. SER. NO. 85-950,991, FILED 6-5-2013. Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office 21 Exhibit E 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 156 of 221 DIG 101 Introduction to Digital Studies Swipe Right For Tinder The dating application Tinder created by Sean Rad, Justin Mateen, and Jonathan Badeen in September of 2012, is a phenomenon that has not only tapped into many social spheres that would normally not utilize online dating, but it also has won over regular web daters. Tinder is simple. To access the app, one only has to download it and connect to their Facebook account. That is it. From this point, the user sets the gender, age range, and distance they want to search within for matches. Tinder utilizes a user's geographical location along with certain algorithms to carry out a search ("Tinder"). Then the fun begins. Once Tinder has executed its search, candidates appear on a user's screen. As journalist Emily Witt puts it, "Depending on your feelings for these people, you swipe left (meaning 'no thanks') or to the right ('yes, please')" (Witt). Some users, like Anna a 22 year-old New York City Tinderer, nd the selection part of Tinder's process "a game" due to its slot machine like ease (Sciortino). Tinder seems to have hit a home run, except for one thing that its users keep bringing up: What is Tinder's purpose? Ann Friedman believes, "Right now, the answer could be 'casual hookups' or 'last minute co ee dates you feel free to ake on'" (Friedman "How Tinder Solved"). Witt views Tinder as a "dating-hookup hybrid" (Witt). Tinder's CEO Rad and CMO Mateen think their product should be seen as an all encompassing relationship nder that could extended beyond romantic relationships: "Married people can use it to nd http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 1/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 157 of 221 tennis partners!" (Witt). Tinder's nebulous intentions seem to be its only downside. Nevertheless, many people do not nd Tinder's uncertain purpose a problem as evinced by Tinder's currently booming business. Forbes reports that over the past year the app has experienced over 600% in growth and has been download over 40 million times since Rad and Mateen took it public (Bertoni). However, no matter how people decide to interpret Tinder and its implications, the fact remains that it has in uenced our society's technology, culture, economic, and ethics. Tinder's inception began in 2006 when Rad dropped out of the University of Southern California. After leaving school, he tested his entrepreneurship skills, creating one unsuccessful startup and one successful one. The later turned out to be pro table, but unenjoyable to Rad so he sold it for several million dollars and took a position at Hatch Labs, a think tank for new apps. At Hatch, Rad met up with his college friend Mateen (Bertoni). During one of the Lab's "Hackathons," Rad and Mateen began discussing a problem they had both been experiencing: "the frustrations of sending smoke signals [to the opposite sex] through social media" (Witt). The application that would become Tinder was a product of this discussion. Rad and Mateen outlined the product that day, rst naming it Matchbox. Soon after this their boss provided them with the funds needed to program the app. Once they created it, Rad and Mateen ended up changing its name to Tinder in order to di erentiate it from InterActivCorp's (IAC) popular dating site Match.com. Once the app was operational, Mateen reached out to his old social contacts at Southern Cal to stir interest in Tinder (Bertoni). Mateen focused on the college crowd who normally would be disinterested in any sort of online dating because he "wanted people to join Tinder not because they saw an ad on Facebook but because they recognized its social value" (Witt). In September of 2012, they launched the app at Southern Cal, and commenced to travel to well known party schools to expedite Tinder's growth. At and around these college's campuses, their representatives would go to "the best campus bars and the most exclusive nightclubs" peddling their product (Witt). During the early stages of Tinder, few people used the app, but these few were extraordinarily attractive. In Los Angeles and around these party schools, Mateen sought out female models and attractive sorority and fraternity members to establish http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 2/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 158 of 221 Tinder's base. Mateen was stocking the pond, if you will. While marketing Tinder, the company's vice president, Whitney Wolfe, went to a nearby Apple Store and let a Genius preview it. She recalled that "his eyes popped out of his head as there many have only been 200 [females on Tinder] but they were 200 of the prettiest girls you've ever seen" (Witt). Obviously, Tinder has undergone much growth and change since then. In November of 2013, they reported, "users from the 18-24 range have already fallen to 60% of the Tinder population […] from the 80% at the beginning of this year" (Summers). This is quite a change from the age range Rad and Mateen focused on while the application was in its infant stages. Tinder's attractive and socially adept users spurred on much of its growth during these early stages and gave it its reputation of being a rare ed commodity. As Tinder users become more mainstream and older, its users are bound to become less model status, less Greek, and more normal. As far as statistics go, this demographic shift has not slowed Tinder's growth, but it could eventually hurt its reputation amongst the crowd that brought it to its current level of prevalence. If this shift alienates Tinder's base group, could this, in turn, end the app's popularity and social acceptability? Prior to Tinder's rise to dominance in the dating app world, no application ruled. Several applications were around that were and still are similar to Tinder. They are Grindr, Blendr, and DOWN (formerly known as Bang with Friends). In 2009, Joel Simkhai created Grindr, a dating app geared it towards gay and bisexual men. The application uses other app users' locations to show their distance from you and orders them in a list with the top names being the closest in proximity. This element of Grindr takes away the popular gaming quality of Tinder's swipe option by giving you a laundry list of possible matches. Once a user selects a pro le to view, the chosen pro le displays something that sets it apart from Tinder: "Looking for." http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 3/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 159 of 221 Grindr Pro les This removes some of the ambiguity that Tinderers experience by the person's intent for using the app. However, even with this feature Vanity Fair's Matt Kapp still nds the application's purpose vague. As he puts it "The company seems to be su ering from a serious case of writer's block when it comes to articulating what Grindr is or intends to be. […] Its logo looks like a cross between a vaudeville mask and something Hannibal Lecter might wear. The company's explanation of the same Grindr strains credulity. 'Here's the deal: The name 'Grindr' was chosen because it embodied the idea of 'grinding' people together in the same way that a co ee grinder grinds co ee beans'" (Kapp). http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 4/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 160 of 221 Grindr's Logo The combination of Grindr's fearsome logo and uncomfortable name description do create uncertainty. Who wants to use a dating app that cranks and churns a user from nice wholesome co ee bean to a ne powder of co ee grounds under the watchful eye of Hannibal the cannibal? Maybe a really masochist deviant, but most likely this app's success is due to its monopolistic hold over the market of gay dating apps. Unfortunately for Grindr, its ambiguous qualities do not end there. Its messaging can cause further confusion. Any user can message another user whenever or however they want. The sender needs no consent from the receiving party to send a message. The message can contain text, no matter how profane, or pictures, again, no matter how profane. The unrestricted content of messages can perplex and maybe even scare o users like 'David' (pictured above) who seek friendship. A nude pic might give 'David' misgivings about the app that markets itself as an all encompassing relationship nder. Because Grindr casts such a wide net by seeking "relationships" (i.e. http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 5/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 161 of 221 friendships, sexual relations, dating) neither 'David' nor the sender is in the wrong (Kapp). Despite Grindr's struggle to de ne its purpose, in June of 2012 it had 4.5 million users who each spent about 90 minutes a day searching for mates (Friedman "Overwhelmed"). This enticed Joel Simkhai to create Blendr, the heterosexual equivalent of Grindr. Before Simkhai released Blendr, he claimed its purpose was " nding new friends" using the app's geographical location technology instead of "sex and dating" (Neate). Almost a year later, Friedman gave the app a test drive and immediately felt "cornered [and] overwhelmed" from the instantaneous barrage of messages from random male users (Friedman "Overwhelmed"). She now says she only opens the app "to show it to friends, scrolling through pages and pages of unappealing men in what resembled a masochistic digital age performance-art piece titled 'Why I Am Single'" (Friedman "Overwhelmed"). Friedman experienced what a Northwestern University study on online dating termed "the deluge problem" (Friedman "Overwhelmed"). Whether these incessant "Wassup[s]?" or "Whaat are you up to[s]?" were sent to Friedman in the name of friendship or sex, Blendr, like Grindr, has too little restriction on its content. Unlike Grindr, who dominates the gay dating app niche, Blendr does not have the bene t of controlling the market of heterosexual dating apps therefore blunders can be costly. One of Blendr's competitors is the app DOWN. DOWN deviates distinctly from Blendr in three di erent ways. The rst and most obvious di erence is that DOWN does not utilize the popular geographical locator. Instead, DOWN searches within a user's Facebook friends for possible matches presenting them on a one by one basis. Once a candidate is presented then, similar to Tinder, a user can swipe through the presented candidates. However, DOWN's swipe function upgrades Tinder's. In place of the right, left swipe options, DOWN presents the user with three: Swipe up for a date, swipe down to "get down," and swipe left to decline. This feature removes the ambiguity Tinderers have come to dislike while keeping the fun, game like swipe function. If one user swipes up, but the other user swipes down, then the 'down' user will be noti ed giving them the option to accept the date or decline the other person altogether. Once both users have agreed to and accepted their parameters and each other, messaging http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 6/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 162 of 221 can begin (DOWN App). However, even though DOWN seems to have taken a rm step in the direction of pinning down the de nition of their app that other apps have struggled doing, this might only be a ploy on the behalf of DOWN's creators to separate themselves from their competition. Look at this image of the "How It Works" section of their website: DOWN's 'How It Works' page As evinced by the sexual nature presented on the 'How It Works' page, DOWN does not seem to have moved beyond its original intent to simply bang with friends. Once this fact becomes known will this impact its users' perceptions of the app even though they still have the option to date or get down? Early in 2013, Friedson forecasted that "until a start up comes along that manages to make mobile dating not weird by o ering women—and the men they want to meet— control, incredible lters, and clarity of mission" no one app will ever dominate the heterosexual market (Friedson "Overwhelmed"). Is Tinder this app? Tinder's improvement upon many dating sites and some of the apps mentioned above has won over many users. The rst thing that many users notice is the app's ease of use. Most dating sites require participants to ll out a detailed questionnaire, which deters many possible candidates from using the site. The normal online dater is a hard http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 7/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 163 of 221 working person who does not have time to date through traditional methods, little less "put the time and e ort into meticulously constructing a pro le, screening dozens of messages, and going on dates with guys who look nothing like their pictures" (Friedman "How Tinder Solved"). Therefore Tinder is an attractive option whose sole requirement is acquiring access to the user's Facebook account. Women Tinderers also tend to nd its link to Facebook comforting. It provides a degree of authenticity that dating sites cannot. You might be thinking to yourself that faux Facebook pro les are just as common as fake dating pro les, but Facebook is "ruthless about cracking down on fake accounts," which brings a Tinder member closer to legitimacy than they can get via a dating site (Friedman "How Tinder Solved). Another bene t of Tinder's Facebook alliance is that Tinder displays mutual friends when viewing another's pro le. If the viewer feels comfortable enough to ask their friend about the individual being viewed this could add another avenue of accuracy (Friedman "How Tinder Solved). Like on Blendr and other dating websites, most women endure relentless undesired messaging. Tinder solves this problem (as does DOWN) through what Emily Witt calls the "double opt-in," which is "some establishment of mutual interest that precedes interaction" (Witt). This is, of course, when two users both swipe right to each other on the app. The double opt-in not only eliminates the unwanted messaging making the app attractive to users who were scared o from Blendr or regular dating sites, but it also relieves the pressure of real life dating. Now a person does not have to su er rejections since they know through the app that the person they are going to pick up has already agreed to go out with them. Another bonus for Tinder users, especially women, is that Tinder disables the capability to send pictures through the app. This spares many parties from having to su er unwanted nude pictures that are prevalent on Grindr and Blendr (Kapp). To answer Friedman's question, yes, out of all the apps presently available, this is best and most legitimate dating application. Tinder not only provides the above-mentioned bene ts to dating, but it also allows the matched duo to (somewhat) organically decide if they are right for each other and leaves some excitement in the form of the unknown to the date by withholding personal information. Also, using Tinder is socially acceptable, unlike dating sites that sometimes equate a user to a spinster: It is http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 8/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 164 of 221 something people are not afraid to do at a party or at a bar to pass the time. In fact, it sometimes becomes a game to play with friends. DOWN is a close second because it eliminates the ambiguity that annoys Tinderers by allowing users to determine its purpose with its upgraded swipe function. But DOWN draws from a limited pool that could have alienating consequences among a user's friends if the date turns sour. More clearly, Tinder's statistics prove its legitimacy as the top dating app: It has over 1 billion users and receives over 800 million swipes per day (Gannes). More importantly, 80 percent of Tinder users return to the application each week and 65 percent of Tinder users return each day (Wilson). Yet, despite its popularity, some people believe Tinder corrupts dating, while others believe that it is a new exciting way to date online. It is Tinder's innovative design that maintains this large user base and retention rate. Tinder borrows key pieces of design from other applications and incorporates them into a successful application, which has allowed Tinder to make incredible contributions to technological elds. Tinder Design Tinder borrowed several design ideas from previous applications and principles of human behavior. After people are matched on Tinder, they can send direct messages to each other through the application. This direct message service is based o of I Message for IPhones (Wilson). Similarly, the pro les on Tinder are based on Facebook http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 9/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 165 of 221 pro les (Wilson). In addition, as with many applications today, Tinder tracks user behavior. All new features in Tinder are created based on tracked information, and all new content that is generated is based on users' previous use of the application. Most importantly, as with other applications, all of the changes made to Tinder are based on user actions (Wilson). By emulating previous applications, Tinder is able to build on and meet user expectations. Along with emulating applications, Tinder emulates human behavior. Just like when people meet in real life, when people meet through Tinder, Tinder starts by presenting them with the face of potential dates and then lets people talk to each other just as happens in real life (Wilson). By creating a design that is similar to real life, Tinder takes advantage of user expectations again; and therefore, makes people more engaged in the application. Learn about some of these design principles from one of the creators himself in the rst 4 minutes of this video: All of these aspects of the design of Tinder that were borrowed from other applications have contributed to Tinder's success, but it is the new aspects of its design that truly have made it successful. A key part of the design of Tinder is its simplicity. Tinder only requires people to swipe right or left to interact with the http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 10/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 166 of 221 application (Wesson). The limited customization options for Tinder pro les also create this simplicity. All of the photographs and interests on Tinder come from Facebook and cannot be created within Tinder (Wilson). This aspect of Tinder adds to the simplicity and also the trust within Tinder. By creating this simple environment, the design of Tinder makes it easy and fast for users. It's a match The most important and innovating aspect of the design of Tinder is its Card User Interface. Card User Interfaces are a new framework for presenting information on the Internet through small individual pieces of content (Ajello). According to the creators of Tinder, its design was inspired by decks of cards (Gannes). Cards have been used as a means of communication for a long time. China used cards back in the 9th century, trade cards were used for businesses in the 17th century and in the 18th century, footman used cards to introduce guests. Today, business cards and game cards are used in everyday life. In all of these instances, cards provide fast communication that is easily manipulated (Why cards). The card interface of Tinder is an alternative to the traditional scrolling interface that is used by applications like Facebook and Twitter. The two interfaces can be seen in these videos: http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 11/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 167 of 221 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PPIW21xmlQo There are many advantages to the use of cards in comparison to the use of scrolling interfaces that range from physical to cognitive to computing. Tinder requires extremely little movement from its user in order to function. Tinder users can hold their phones in one hand and simply touch buttons with their thumbs (Gannes). Today, many daily interactions and activities are completed on phones on small portable screens (Why cards). Because users can use Tinder with one hand, they can use it when they are moving around which drastically increases the chances that people will use the application (Torkington) in commparison, traditional scrolling interfaces require much more e ort. Tinder can be used with such little e ort that a robot like the Tinderomatic can do it: http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 12/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 168 of 221 Scrolling requires people to scroll, stop, move up, and move down to see information (Gannes). Tinder and its card interface require far less e ort than other interfaces, which makes it more appealing to its users. In a culture where speed and ease are paramount, interfaces like Tinder's are advantageous. Cognitively, the Card User Interface has several advantages over scrolling interfaces. Card interfaces provide a sense of accomplishment to their users because it is possible for the users to reach an end point unlike with scrolling interfaces. Scrolling interfaces go on continuously and never reach an end. Because of this di erence, users never feel accomplished (Ajello). Users of card interfaces evaluate one option at a time without distractions. Scrolling interfaces provide many options and distractions. This lack of distractions and options leads to much better choices. Similarly, studies have shown that people actually make better decision when they make snap judgments then when they deliberate over decisions due to adaptive unconscious. Therefore the snap judgments that are encouraged on card interfaces lead to better choices (Torkington). These cognitive advantages of card interfaces allow people to make better decisions and enjoy themselves more than traditional applications. http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 13/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 169 of 221 In addition to the physical and cognitive bene ts of card interfaces, card interfaces are advantageous for companies like Tinder because they provide more information through the application. Tinder and other card interfaces create successive repetitive discrete decision moments and each of these moments provides data to Tinder. For each of these decisions, Tinder learns about individuals' likes, dislikes and other preferences. In addition, for each of these dislikes and likes, Tinder tests the time of day of the preferences and whether these preferences vary by time (Ajello). The use of these decisions and the company's response is known as anticipatory computing. Anticipatory computing is the collection of data to predict what users want or need (Torkington). Anticipatory computing is much easier in card interfaces than in scrolling interfaces and is another advantage of card interfaces such as the interface used in Tinder. The design of Tinder and its card interface has inspired many di erent applications and has spread to many other elds. Tinder has inspired several other applications to use card interfaces to reach their users. Jelly, an ask and answer application; Swell, a personalized streaming audio feed; Weotta, an activities based application, and Google scholar, an information based application, all use card interfaces (Torkington). Many applications were inspired by Tinder, which can be seen in this slideshow: http://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2014/08/tinders-swipe-design- revolutionizing-search-one-ap.html In addition, applications that currently use scrolling, such as Facebook and Twitter, are http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 14/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 170 of 221 transitioning to card interfaces (Why cards 14). The design of Tinder has had a large impact on applications such as these examples, and has also had an impact in other elds. One eld that Tinder has begun to in uence is marketing. Marketers can apply the ideas behind this design, by creating advertisements that allow people to click right to choose something they like or to click left for another o er. Currently most advertisements only o er people one option; and therefore, if people do not like that option, they have to search for all of the other options. One company that has applied the design of Tinder to their advertisements is Bu er. This company is a social sharing service that allows people swipe right or left for suggestions (Wesson). https://bu erapp.com Another aspect of marketing that has been inspired by Tinder and its design is Pitcher. Pitcher is an application that allows people to search for promotions companies. To complete this search, people input a campaign type, brand, and fee and then swipe left or right as they search through companies (Johnston). This video demonstrates how Pitcher works: http://lovintrends.com/tech/this-app-is- tinder-for-marketeers. Tinder's design has inspired other applications to follow suit and has inspired a variety of elds to adapt its swipe right, swipe left basic principle. Initially, Tinder appears to be incredibly simple, but in reality its design is the perfect balance of old and new ideas that entice users and that has inspired other application design. Tinder is one of the rst applications to use a Card User Interface and much of its success must be attributed to this interface, the simplicity of Tinder, and the key pieces of the design of Tinder that were borrowed from other applications. The design of Tinder has been replicated in many other applications and elds and may be Tinder's greatest legacy. Not only has Tinder's design in uenced a number of user interfaces, but it has also transformed our dating culture. Before looking at Tinder's in uence on current dating culture though, it is important to outline how the Western culture de nes dating. Traditionally, dating was seen as an opportunity for two parties to set aside "quality time together" in order to get to know one another on a deeper level (Bogle 163). This script generally ended with the goal of a committed relationship. Additionally, the role of sex in the traditional dating script was not as critical compared to that in current hookup culture. Sex generally came later in the relationship after a period of getting to http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 15/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 171 of 221 know one another, but the extent of sexual encounters during the dating era was much more limited in comparison to dating in this era, as well (Bogle 159). In contrast, the modern de nition of dating blurs this line between traditional dating and the hookup culture. http://video.foxnews.com/v/2405098206001/the-hook-up-culture/#sp=show- clips From 1:40 to 3:30 in this video, Fox News Discusses Hookup Culture Contemporary relationships often progress at a much quicker speed than relationships in the traditional dating era. For example, the hookup script does not require or encourage getting to know someone before engaging in sexual encounters (Bogle 159). Sexual encounters are more socially acceptable outside of serious, committed relationships than previously, thus they occur earlier more frequently. Congruently, relations are often much more casual because the level of emotional connection and intimacy is not as great of a priority (Bogle 163). Traditional dating sentiments are still present though, such as the importance of connecting with others, which leaves the current dating standards a little unclear. Consequently, new dating applications such as Tinder seek to more clearly de ne the current dating culture. Tinder's innovative design has initiated a dating revolution. Largely due to convenience, individuals increasingly turn to social media technologies to form connections with others (Lisi). But unlike more dated websites such as Okcupid and Match.com, Tinder intends to mimic real life interactions through virtual interfaces with its card user technology. Tinder upholds the idea that people want to establish connections with individuals they would not otherwise encounter, while simplifying the dating process even more with its basic interface. Tinder's design eliminates the initial face-to-face meeting and awkward small talk while still making that rst physical impression (Lisi). This gives users a sense of comfort knowing they have less to lose, which makes them a little more likely to continue using the app. http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 16/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 172 of 221 The Science of Tinder: game of love without the pressure video The swipe left-swipe right technology has ultimately turned dating into just another game. By transforming online dating into a game, Tinder changes how individuals engage with the application and the dating process. When you make a match the app literally gives you the option to send a message or to "keep playing." Additionally, making a match is like earning a point. The more points you have the more options you have, and the more likely you are to win the game of love. This level of success while using the app often fosters more optimism regarding dating, much like successful decisions in the game playing experience encourage players to continue (SoulPancake). As a result of the game-play feel of Tinder, users put less pressure on the dating experience, making it more fun and desirable to engage in. In the following video, Hu ington Post talks about why Tinder is so addictive http://www.hu ingtonpost.com/2013/04/09/tinder-dating-app_n_3044472.html http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 17/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 173 of 221 By making matches based on the user's desire and/or ability to swipe left or swipe right, Tinder arguably devalues personal connections. Because Tinder is such a time saver in the dating process, time is not spent developing detailed pro les and strong connections based on personality and interests. Pass judgements are made based on physical appearance alone, just like they would in the bar setting, but the important small talk is eliminated. Accordingly, Tinder has established a stronger focus on the casual dating structure. Users make their initial decision to like another user based on physical attraction. Consequently, users regularly go on dates with the expectation of physical contact, which makes hookups more common as a result (Ryan). According to Aaron Smith and Meave Duggan, users are also less likely to settle down in a relationship due to the large number of dating options the app provides (21). Therefore, Tinder provides an extension of the hookup culture largely due to the shallow circumstances under which Tinder users generally establish connections (Ryan). Crazy Stupid Love, bar/hookup conversation in above video http://samplereality.com/davidson/dig101/2014/12/09/swipe-right-for-tinder/ 18/36 10/29/2018 Swipe Right Case 6:18-cv-00080-ADA Document 64 ForFiled Tinder03/27/19 – DIG 101 Page 174 of 221 This exten