The eHarmony dating site bills itself as the ultimate uniter, but a piece in Newsweek shows that the very practices that make it so successful — 236 eHarmony users marry every day — could get them sued.
The roots of the site have long been speculated about. It was founded by 72-year-old Christian self-help author Neil Clark Warren, who published several of his books under the imprint of Dobson's Focus on the Family, and then consummated that relationship when eHarmony started out by peddling eHarmony the service on Dobson's radio show.
Adding to the buzz, and a fact successfully exploited by competitor Chemistry.com, is that eHarmony rejects about 20 percent of its applicants and doesn't fully explain why. Their official statement says that the site rejects people who are underage, already married or dishonest—as well as those whose answers raise flags about their mental health. Some don't see it that way. To see who, read more.
In June, a California judge will hear a plaintiff's motion for class certification in a case that accuses eHarmony of discrimination against gays and lesbians. It's sneaky. eHarmony does not reject gays, it's just not an option. When creating a profile, the only choices on the site are "man seeking woman" or "woman seeking man." A ha! An eHarmony lawyer explains that since the matches are based on unique scientific research on heterosexual combos, the fact it hasn't done the same kind of work on gay unions makes them less worthy matchmakers.
Should a company be able to be sued for not being available to everyone? Is eHarmony hiding behind science to discriminate? Are you interested in the religious story behind eHarmony?