CouplesSpark Makes Relationship Counseling Social
May 5, 2010 7 Comments
by Elias Shams
Last week, I handpicked and covered five out of eleven DC startups presented at the Social Matchbox event. Not that the other six weren’t any good. It’s just that I am more familiar with the space the five selected startups are going after. I think most of them have a clever and promising products, but tough competition.
Based on the feedback I received from a few local VCs about the new rising stars, as a loyal and passionate Washingtonian and serial entrepreneur, I’d like to give a little bit more educational coverage to each one of them starting with CouplesSpark which I had the pleasure of meeting its founder, Kunmi Ayanbule over coffee at Cosi in Dupont Circle early this week.
Using the power of social media, CouplesSpark is a free online service that tries to tackle and solve our classic “I hate you,… and I hate you” type of conversation most of us go through with our girlfriends, boyfriends, husbands, wives, and even our gay partners.
The site does this by giving each couple a stage to defend or elaborate their side of the argument and then crowd source advice from other couples who are member of the site and possibly gone through similar problem. Anyone can vote on which mate they agree with, ultimately giving a winner in the conflict.
Having gone through these type of of conflicts myself many times, I am not quite sure declaring the winner in these type of conflicts is the right approach. The concept is in the right direction though. Declaring the winner thing requires a little bit of tweaking here. The good thing is the advice and insights received by the community with similar problems may potentially improve your communication with your mate.
I must admit, before visiting the site, I expected all the conflicts to be bitter girlfriends or wives bitching and bickering about their boyfriends or husbands but I was surprised to see thought provoking and insightful conflicts. In fact, CouplesSpark defines a “conflict” as an argument or fight you are having in your relationship or a conversation with your mate that you disagree on.
This opens up the doors for much more interesting “conflicts” and make good conversation starters. For example, there is a conflict entitled “Should marriages have an expiration date”, which is not a bad concept if you ask me “Mate 2” argues that this could lead to a reduced divorce rate as both mates will work harder in order to keep their partner after the marriage expiration.
Another conflict asks “if 80% of women go through their man’s cell-phone”. I sure hope they do not.
Some of the conflicts on the site are quite embarrassing and it is no surprise that a good number of the couples have chosen to be completely anonymous.
CouplesSpark seems to do a good job respecting and protecting those couples’ identities. The concept is simple and surprisingly addictive, and the implementation seems good. I’m excited to see where this goes.
If you are in a relationship (gay or straight) and having a problem with your partner, I encourage you both to give it a try and let us what you think of the concept.
Lastly, enjoy one of my favorite video related to the subject. It is hilarious