While the drawbacks of online dating are clear, its potential remains. Adoption of online dating platforms by young adults, after all, has roughly tripled since 2013 says the PEW Research Center.
Adhering to ideal scenario, users who approached love searching via matching apps, gain access to a large and focused dating pool that is specifically catered to them. Additionally they have the chance to be effectively linked to their dream partner by an intelligent algorithm based on the enriched data they provide. It may seem to be a perfect dating experience; however, closer analysis reveals that the user gains the least while risking the most.
This occurs due to an issue of lack of privacy and unfairness, which is inherent to any centralized system that usually requires gathering a lot of personal information in order to optimize the matching process. The mechanism runs on the following principle: the more data points users achieve, the better they can match participants since the results will be more accurate. But on the other side, the more information a user uploads to the platform, the more exposed that user becomes to information theft. Online dating platforms are particularly attractive targets for hackers precisely because of the large amount of personal and intimate information they hold.
Another evident disadvantage pertaining to a centralized matching system is fraud. Fake profiles that are quite common on dating apps, mainly are used by scammers to manipulate their victims through romance into giving up money. Besides that, users of centralized dating platforms are frequently exposed to the issue of spam and bots, while less serious but still relevant, a vast majority of users waste their time and money in hopes of building a relationship.
The challenge therefore is to maintain the benefits offered by online dating while eliminating the disadvantages of the status quo centralized platforms outlined above. Hicky sets out to do this by merging real-life behavior with the decentralized online platform based on blockchain and smart contracts that will serve to secure and effective dating process.
All the data provided by users is protected via encryption. For the messaging aspect, Hicky is going to use the Whisper protocol to ensure decentralization. While most dating apps keep a record of all messages the users send, using it to derive profits through targeted advertising, in a decentralized environment, by contrast, messaging is conducted on a peer-to-peer basis with no one else intermediation. The users can rest assured that their communication remains secure and private. Besides that, platform participants have to pay a small transaction fee to eliminate spam and overwhelmed messaging. The verification process will be done via a face scan and voice recognition that will keep bots at bay and help establish both trust and intimacy between the users in the network.
Hicky utilizes its own token HKY aiming to create an underlying token economy in which the user is no longer the product. To jumpstart the economy, users initially earn HKY by going through the verification process. Sending and receiving messages via the app requires HKY that will be initially purchasable through either the private or the public token sale.
In order to fund the development of the platform and distribute tokens, Hicky launched a token sale on 14th February that was organized around smart contracts running on the Ethereum blockchain. The sale is already live and will end in about three days’ time. To participate, token buyers have to send ETH, BTC or LTC to the designated address and then receive a personal address after signup and email confirmation. The HKY tokens are being sold at a rate of 7500 HKY per ETH and will remain so for the duration of the contribution period. This token sale has already announced to successfully reach the soft cap, which means the project is a go.