The Problem with 99% Matches

Will keep me busy

According to OkCupid, I am blessed with many a 99% match. 168, to be precise – confining my search to single straight men with photos who fall within my age range, have been online in the last month, and live within a 25-mile radius. Yep, that’s right, there are 168 men out there who are supposedly tailor-made for me.

168 men. That’s 15 football teams, with three reserves. That’s two double-decker buses. That’s 18 more than you’d find in the optimal social network. That’s exactly four times the number of men that Miranda from Sex and the City professes to have slept with. That’s one man for every hour of the week, excluding breaks for sleep and food and probable trips to the STI clinic.

Charmed though I am with my abundance of matches, I do find myself wondering what a 99% match really entails. Assuming that a 100% match would be the One True Soulmate Predestined For Me By The Universe, do I take it that a 99% match is like that, only with a flaw? Somebody who is perfect for me in every way, apart from with a single, deadly, deal-breaker?

I can picture them now, my two busloads of men, filing out at hourly intervals for spot checks. Number 8 – now he looks marvellous, but what about that weird stain on his top? Number 72 – he seems great, till I find out what he keeps in his bedside cabinet. As for number 167, well he comes close, but with one more left to look at, I’m hedging my bets.

Now, I don’t think I should be too scathing about the match system. Having met a good few of my supermatches, I can see why the algorithm has put us together. If someone matches highly with you, you’re probably from similar sorts of background. Your political and religious beliefs converge; you’re educated to roughly the same level; you agree about the relative sizes of celestial bodies and you’re highly unlikely to have a blazing row at a seafood restaurant about whether or not clams are alive.

I’d also say that, compared with other dating sites, OkCupid is probably on the money. eHarmony, for instance, matches people via the slippery system of psychometrics. This is tenuous. I prefer the OkCupid party line that you’ll be drawn to those with similar opinions, rather than those with a ‘complementary personality type’.

The fact remains, however, that as a gauge of attraction, no internet algorithm is fully to be trusted. It cannot tell you about smell, or chemistry, or physical rapport, or about that knotty rope of association and memory and personal idiosyncrasy that sometimes, against all logic, tugs at your guts. All it can ever do is what OkCupid does best, which is weeding out the neo-Nazi clam-deniers.

In the meantime, when it come to meeting my 168 99% matches, it looks like I’m going to have a busy week.


About Abi Millar

British freelance journalist living in the Netherlands
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51 Responses to The Problem with 99% Matches

  1. Matt says:


    you must almost be perfect, or at least normal, to get all of those 99% matches; I’m different enough (my explanation) to get a page or two in the 90s and then its down into the 80s.

    I agree with you though that its not a bad system and ultimately its down to the individuals to decide if they’re compatible; we just use the data to make (semi) rational decisions.

    Its also a lot better than some of the other bigger sites (e.g. match) that offer no assistance in effect except the odd survey.

    • Abi Millar says:

      Should think you’re the normal one. The number of messages I’ve had from guys, telling me I’m their highest match in the world…! Think it’s simply that I’ve answered too many match questions. Crash in drunkenly one night and answer 800 questions, and watch your tally of 99 per-centers go up…

      • Nick says:

        Shouldn’t that focus things more, rather than less? I’ve found women that I match with initially where the percentage has gone down as they answer more questions, and then they start backing away from the laptop….

        • Abi Millar says:

          I don’t know. I assumed my high matchability was to do with having answered too many questions – given that this is the area in which I deviate from the average site user most. Then again, maybe not. Perhaps I just answer questions like a bloke :-/

  2. Natalie says:

    It is interesting, I usually search on match %, but one guy I’ve been dating that I really click with, the one that gives me those elusive butterflies, is only an 80% match. When it all goes to hell (inevitable), I can at least blame it on the low match percentage.

    • Nick says:

      Optimistic as ever, I see!

    • Abi Millar says:

      As an experiment, I dated a guy who was at about 65%. We didn’t agree on much… but my word was he hot! Definitely worth seeing it through 🙂

      • Matt says:

        so is he getting a second date then?

        • Abi Millar says:

          hmmm. Probably not. 80% is perhaps the borderline.

          • Nick says:

            I think that’s about right. It’s the percentage that my message filter is set at.

          • Thebuckstopshereasdoesthefuck! says:

            “my word was he hot! Definitely worth seeing it through” and you WON’T give him a second date? Sounds far too spoilt to me… sorry. What do you expect if that’s the case, happiness? Do share the formula if you’re going to be so mathematical in the first place? You’re still really hot, though, yourself… but if I was the best match, and looked like the stereotypical Brad Pitt, what would I find attractive in a spoilt woman? There’s not enough cultural pressure to avoid this attitude when dating (maybe it’s hard-coded into the female DNA and I’m mistaken in calling it cultural, but I doubt it’s 100% either way) and too much cultural pressure or emphasis on choice, like human beings are sweets in a pick-and-mix stand. That’s how I see it, and I mean that quite above and beyond the expected dating dynamics. Women always seem to be looking for something wrong with a guy, as if it’s giving up the crown jewels to even give the wrong guy a sniff! If true, that would be a major parallel with certain mental illnesses, and, well, basically people need to be less narcissistic, and if they think they’re giving something up, less paranoid in general, a pussy isn’t any more golden than a penis and everyone has a heart and mind to look after equally. Some do that pro-actively, some expect others to be perfect or they won’t even bother… and there’s a gender divide right there. It won’t work out well like that, if ‘well’ means long-lasting relationships. I guess the aim is have some fun, get the sperm and run when the offspring has graduated, right? No? Then don’t set yourself up to fail. Sorry if this is patronising, but I too am disillusioned with the algorithms used in matching people on these sites, and the whole highlighting of the gender gap in attraction that exists. Putting on make-up and looking nice (all a woman has to do to get a guy unless she’s completely obnoxious) is a defined, finite effort, albeit one where the average guy doesn’t have to make as much. The psychological attracting part is more the guy’s job, and this is a disparity and source of problems, at least for me. I resent having to make more effort (as I believe it is) for no more gain. If there’s no equality from the start, how can the relationship ever be solid enough to last? Like racist ethnic minorities who often ought to know better (check the thousands of inane racist comments on the infamous ‘Racist woman on tram’ video on Youtube – against ALL white people) I see a worrying cultural trend in certain women who aren’t interested in genuine equality so much as ‘getting theirs’ at the expense of men, now that they more or less ‘have the power to do so’. Any victim who becomes a perpetrator deserves removal from the planet to make room for someone who can stop the circle of abuse in its tracks – debatable, but it’s a solution. Such people wind me up, but they ought to be the exception. Are they? I may easily be wrong, but from my perspective, the balance here (as in many areas) needs to be re-jigged, and rather than getting nazi on anyone’s ass – people need to simply be educated to use power ethically. Perhaps a culture in general of condemning hypocrisy in themselves and their peers, instead of somewhat encouraging it – as in the examples I draw above. No, why teach philosophy and ethics in school when that might up the political maturity of the country exponentially and put the average employee at odds with those widespread unethical corporate practices and make politicians have to be democratic? No, let’s teach all kids how to do basic MS Office instead… because that of course is something they could never teach themselves and practice on their own… right??
            Basically, what I’m saying is when British societal issues go that deep and are that widespread, what does a few % matter if you’re lucky enough to find someone hot – and if you’re lucky, more or less ethical?

            • Abi Millar says:

              You think it’s wrong to discriminate on grounds of compatibility? Surely going out with someone you had nothing in common with / wouldn’t otherwise socialise with / did not see eye-to-eye with would leave both parties deeply unhappy, irrespective of whether either of you were ‘hot’?

              My purpose with this post was to ask how well the OkC algorithm predicts compatibility, not to question the value of compatibility itself. The rudiments of a physical attraction turn quickly to indifference if the two of you simply don’t get on.

      • Natalie says:

        Yes, I think aesthetics play an incredibly important role!

  3. Matt says:

    gawd, yup, I’m only in the 500s – need to get drunk and hit that keyboard. Knowing me I’d starting writing some dribble about me too.

    I must admit that there are even a few questions I don’t want really to answer, just a teensy, weensy too personal even for me.

    • Nick says:

      So don’t answer those questions publicly – I’m pretty sure that it still feeds into the algorithm, even if you can’t compare answers.

      As for me, I have about 30 at 99%, which actually as a male, quite picky, and having answered quite a few questions, seems unlikely.

      Yet, at least some of those 99% matches seem/are quite lovely. And then to a lesser extent down to about 85% I’d say. So within that sort of range my personal feeling is that OKC is fairly accurate.

  4. Dan says:

    You’re lucky to have the choice!

    My highest match on the same criteria is 94% and there are only 3 of them.

    Actually, you are one of them!!

  5. stevesw says:

    It’s nice to have a 99% match, but that would be like dating your twin. Having a lot in common is wonderful, however there has to be differences; it’s the differences that make exploration interesting. I would say 80%, but you have to consider what it is that you are not compatible about. ‘A’ likes meat and potatoes, while ‘B’ is vegan = can work. ‘A’ likes a Newcastle with his steak, while ‘B’ likes to sip $9 a glass spring water = nope. It’s a mater of perspective 😉

    • Abi Millar says:

      oh, you’d be surprised about the differences that can emerge while dating your 99% match… I’ve met/dated quite a few of mine, and while there was definitely common ground, there was never any sense in which we were too similar. Even referring purely to the OkCupid match questions, we’d still have several pages of of ‘unacceptable answers’. Always good fun to come to blows about 🙂

  6. Michael says:

    Strolling through my own matches, I find that over half of my 80% and above are Christian. Not that I mind, but I tend to filter by religions after I’ve clicked my 5th “Can’t live without God” or simply “Very serious” about their Christianity / similar. I want to avoid another potential headache, as I’ve had in the past. But this has lead me to notice that the 80-90% matches end up more agreeable to me than the 90+%.

    For some reason OkCupid gives the highest possible match of 99.9% at about 711 answered questions. Regardless if you have 3000 questions answered, if only 711 are shared, you could have a 99% match. Perhaps not as effective a matching system as might have been thought?

  7. Matt says:

    ha – just checked, we’re not compatible at all, we’re only a 95% match; you’ve been saved by the bell.

    Bring on the gin blog!

  8. Anonymous says:

    Who wants to be normal?
    I’d rather be extraordinary.

  9. Matt says:

    normal is definitely a relative description.

    Think I’d be happy with different

  10. Anonymous says:

    That’s a lot of importance you’re attributing to one crappy algorithm.

  11. Matt Baker says:

    from some of the previous comments I’m not sure the alogrithm can be described as “crappy”. It may not be perfect but it seems on the right line for Abi and for others that I know

  12. Interesting. Reading through the comments, you may be onto the number of questions answered as the more questions you have answered the more chance there is that you have answered the same ones as a potential date and more chance that you have matched some of those correctly. It does however seem that OkC weights paired answers (direct match or acceptable) higher than questions that don’t match in its rating

  13. Anonymous says:

    Guess you really did quit this blog….

  14. anonymous says:

    Typical. The online dating female suffers from option paralysis as all these men vie for her attention. On the other hand, the online dating male suffers from an inability to actually get any attention. Result: the only real winner is the site from it’s advertising revenue and subscription fees so they carefully make it look like their trying to do something about it while really they couldn’t care less and actually want the status quo to continue. Or something like that anyway.

    • Matt Baker says:

      Nice to see I’m not the only (male) cynic here

      I wonder if OKC have any data on the ratio of responses from women to the number of mails sent by guys, and maybe by age group too. (i.e 40 emails gets you one response – whether that is a PFO is immaterial)

      It would be interesting to see if the time spent emailing would be better spent down at the pub.

      • anonymous says:

        I suspect they know exactly what the ratio is, it’s not like it’s hard to figure it out from your own site’s messaging system. What that ratio represents is something chilling to consider – it’s the average number of times a man is required to put himself through a cycle of suspense and disappointment before he’ll get a response. If you’re chatting up women in a pub at least they’ll acknowledge your existence, but sit them down in front of a computer screen and they suddenly dehumanise the whole process and couldn’t give a toss about the effect their silence has on the man at the other end of the connection.

        • Natalie says:

          I’m still totally mystified as to why men feel the suspense and disappointment at a lack of reply at all. I regularly send messages to men and often don’t get a reply, and it doesn’t bother me at all – I realise that no one is to everyone’s taste in looks or personality, it might be that they’re busy, it might be that they’ve got a few dates lined up with other girls and they can’t be bothered to arrange something new right now, either way it is cool – you just send the message and move on. If you get a reply, great, if not, they’re either busy or not interested in you.

          As I’ve said before, some days on OKC I get around 30 messages, there is just no way I am going to reply to them all and sometimes it will be a quick dismissal process based on pictures/profile content, just as you might do a quick assessment of whether you want to talk to a guy in a bar or not in real life based on how they look. I’m certainly not going to send out some patronizing acknowledgement/rejection message to every man I’m not going to reply to, and I just find it so hard to understand why people take a lack of reply so personally. It just seems to indicate a total lack of ego/self-confidence, it shouldn’t bother you at all if some woman on the internet that you’ve never met doesn’t fancy you – just move on and forget her!

          • anonymous says:

            While expecting absolutely everyone to reply is fanciful and ridiculous, and while no single no-reply is ever a problem, the endless churn of search-consider-message-noreply repeated 30/40/50/100 times with nothing to show for it is disheartening. Each individual (rejection? no, too strong a word) occasion where your advances are silently declined adds up to a very heavy whole.

            I recently stopped frequenting online dating sites to protect my self-esteem – there’s only so many messages you can write and excuses you can lay on the system before you begin to question your self-worth. There’s only so much time and energy and emotion you can put into something without any kind of return before you start questioning the very premise behind it and whether it’s worth your continued participation.

            You say you’ve had 30 messages to go through before. At least you’ve got options if you so care to avail yourself of them, so don’t be insulted if I say you’ve not got the slightest clue where men are coming from on this one.

            When I read the result text for “The Boy Next Door” dating persona I never thought it would be quite so personally prophetic.

            • Natalie says:

              No, you’re right, as a woman there are always men ‘out there’ I could date if I wanted to, so I do find it difficult to understand where the men are coming from on this one. Equally though I do think doing online dating it is important to hold a bit of yourself back. These women aren’t rejecting you, they’re rejecting a photo, or some words on a screen you’ve written, not you. That is certainly how I think about it when I don’t get a reply. If they knew how awesome I was, of COURSE they’d reply. Obviously they don’t and if they aren’t going to give me the chance to show them, then that is their loss.

              The whole process is very transient though. But seriously, you can invest time and effort into online dating without investing too much of yourself, at least in the early stages. Don’t let it undermine your self-confidence.

          • Anonymous says:

            You have over a hundred 99% matches, and at times you’ve received 30 messages a day. Sheherezade!

            I have zero 99% matches and can easily go five months without receiving a single hello. Women who do speak with me are generally not willing to meet me.

            I’m glad that I stumbled onto this piece of information. Being tough and handling rejection is fine, but there’s a limit to what I would expected from a human being. We are not machines, and with little positive feedback and extreme negative feedback it’s not compassionate to expect that level of indifference. I find that the people who say “Don’t take it personally” are generally not facing the same order of magnitude of rejection. I’m disabling my eharmony, jdate, and okcupid — hopefully for good.

            To others who are struggling: I received the “You are uber attractive” okcupid email, my SAT was near perfect, I have an unusually high salary for my age. When I do meet women, the dates are always 1.5 – 2 hours, and the women are always completely up for a second date if I ask. I never do, and if they suggest one I never reject them with a pithy, canned “I’m just not feeling chemistry” phrase. Instead, I reject them like a human being, like a friend, and try to incorporate the sandwich technique (1 compliment, rejection, 1 compliment) because I genuinely care. Afterwards, I never caricature my dates to others, because I know that deep down they’re just struggling people like me. It’s strange for me to write all these things that sound so positive, because 95% of the time I feel like a complete loser, and on okcupid I am thoroughly unwanted. If you feel like a loser as well, it’s not you — it’s just a stupid system. Save your self esteem and find a better approach! 😀

            In contrast to struggling online to get 6 dates in a year, I’ve gone to a sketching meetup where I met 6 women in an hour. Try, a course at an adult education center, or a volunteering organization.

  15. anonymous says:

    One of the problems men have is trying to stand out in the crowd. It makes it tough to hold back as much as we’d like when we’re in such a competitive environment. The extra effort invested pretty much requires that you take a hard look at yourself in the process. While many people don’t find that to be too much of an issue, I just don’t think I’m in the right place now to be able to deal with it in a detached fashion.

    I guess what makes it tougher is that I’ve had some success in the past. I used OKC for a while about 5-6 years ago and met a couple of very nice women, one of whom messaged me first. I don’t know if times have changed or it’s just me but things seemed to have dried up lot since then. Any way you look at it, it’s pretty tough out there.

    Natalie, I’d love to continue this conversation without it’s paragraphs being squeezed into non-existance. Shall we figure out a way to message each other or something?

  16. This is a really good post. I’ve been thinking about the problem from a slightly different angle. Let’s say that there are about a million women of approximately my age in the UK (close enough, its the right order of magnitude). I’d reject 90% of those outright for really simple differences that a computer could work out (background, culture, opinions etc). That leaves me with about 100,000. Now factor in that I’m a picky bugger and probably reject 90% on appearance and other relatively superficial issues that inevitably take over when you’re dating with intent. We’re now down to 10,000. At this point we can start to get down to the detail of whether someone fits. Again, I think a fairly hefty reduction isn’t off the cards here either – we’re all looking for the perfect partner. This is how many people you might think about kissing after a date or two. How about 70%. Now we’re at 3,000 people.

    3,000 people. In the whole of the UK. That’s one person per 30 square miles. What fraction of those are on OkCupid? Optimistically 1%? Oh man!

    (Of course, this kind of analysis makes me wonder how anyone finds a partner at all. I suppose many partnerships are pretty suboptimal.)

    • Gliktch says:

      “I’d reject 90% of those outright for really simple differences that a computer could work out (background, culture, opinions etc).”

      Exactly, the computer can do a lot of the work for you – or rather, those people can self-select themselves out of the equation for you, by expressing their positions in match questions. Everybody wins – the site wins with regards to advertising revenue and so on, and both of you win by spending less time trying to connect to people who have fundamental incompatibilities that would (in the short term or long) completely derail any potential relationship. I’m definitely able to relate to your ‘pickiness’, and one of the things that always miffed me about offline dating was how much time, effort, and emotional investment it tended to take (especially as a pretty shy guy, albeit very outgoing, even honest to a fault, in my own circle of friends and family) just to be able to ‘test the waters’ of whether you might have a spark with someone you like…

      “3,000 people. In the whole of the UK. That’s one person per 30 square miles. What fraction of those are on OkCupid? Optimistically 1%?”

      And how many are in your local bar/club/etc? 😉 Internet wins!

      “For some reason OkCupid gives the highest possible match of 99.9% at about 711 answered questions. Regardless if you have 3000 questions answered, if only 711 are shared, you could have a 99% match. Perhaps not as effective a matching system as might have been thought?”

      You can have a 99% match at 100 shared questions, though it is dependent on weighting. There aren’t a lot of factors involved, it’s explained quite clearly on their website (

      Bottom line is, OkCupid matching depends primarily on both people being both aware, and subsequently honest, about themselves and what they want. My advice would be to create an account that has no ties (different email, username, etc) to your main online ‘identity’, and using that freedom to be expansively, deliciously honest about everything. I found it best to do that on question/answer ‘explanations’, and of course in the chosen answers themselves, rather than making your profile itself ridiculously long-winded (okay I did a bit of that too :p)

      If you’re looking for something lasting (and not just a hook-up) then there’s nothing to gain from being fake at any level – if you force yourself to be honest with yourself as well as prospective partners, it will also be a worthwhile learning experience for most people. It’s also incredibly low-stress and invigorating to have a partner (best friend, lover, co-conspirator lol) with whom you can share anything with and know that they’ll respect and love you no matter what, and you don’t have to fear them ‘finding out your worst secrets’, because they’re one of the only people on the planet who already knows and accepts your quirks.

      For the record, I was on OkCupid for about 6 months, sent maybe 50 messages in the first 2 months, my response rate was about 40%, with a conversation rate (at least say 4-5 messages following the initial one) of around half of that. I suggested offline meets with four ladies, saw one of them twice and another one a handful of times (I still consider her a friend even though we haven’t been in touch much – we’ll reconnect again soon). The twice girl was a flop but that was mostly due to it being the first potential date/s since I started on OkC and was hampered by me putting on a persona of sorts, which I later shed (basically I was trying to change myself to be what she wanted – and I realised I couldn’t play a ‘character’ like that in a genuine, worthwhile relationship). One of the remaining two I suggested meeting initially warmed to the idea, but we didn’t set a date and in our next couple of chats I realised we had some fundamental obstacles that I didn’t want to have to deal with (I was self-employed as an independent contractor at the time, and apparently because I was in between contracts, I was unemployed and as she had a 1-year-old she was a stickler for the ol’ 9-5… Glad I dodged that one to be honest 😉 The remaining of those four, it was proposed more as a friends thingy rather than a date, but it just didn’t come about (timing more than anything).

      Finally, there’s Katie 🙂

      We were (before I cleared my answers) a 96% match, we IMed on two occasions for a few minutes (just small chat then oopsgottago), then on May 24 2010, we started talking and didn’t stop – for 12 hours! Even if we’d parted ways at that point, it would have remained a life-changing experience for the both of us, and as it stands we’ve been together 18 months 14 days, spend about 4-8+ hours together each day, and it’s the best thing I’ve ever known :)))) We’ve already talked about getting married on May 24 2013 if we can bear to wait that long, but I’m keeping the engagement method/date (and her ring, which by the way is awesome and the only one out of about 500+ that I looked at which grabbed me) a surprise 😉

      Oh, and I almost forgot to mention – I happen to be in Brisbane, Australia and she comes from Rochester, New York.. you’re not necessarily limited to the UK, Henry! Good luck to all and I wish everyone could find what we have, no matter how and where you search. 🙂

      • Abi Millar says:

        This is amazing! Nice to see something positive posted here. Do you mind if I copy and paste this to the ‘Other Experiences’ page on this blog?

        • Gliktch says:

          Not at all, go for it 🙂

          I understand if you want to edit it down too, I do tend to ramble :p

          Only read a few posts (and the associated bucketload of comments) so far, but really enjoying your blog, I’m sure you’ll see more of me and probably Katie as well 😉

          Kind regards,
          – Matthew

        • crazyk8e says:

          It was a pretty intense experience to say the least. I hadn’t joined OKC to date people, but instead mostly to ‘test the waters’ and see what other people said about dating in general. I am not one that is easily deceived, so I was able to figure out that if I did meet a guy on there, or even out in “the real world,” I would require total honesty and trust, and that I would have to take the chance to return those feelings. During that long chat, Gliktch here and I did discuss some very personal things about each other, things that held us back previously, and some other various issues that were seriously holding me back then. We have a lot in common, but there are also still enough differences between us that things should never become boring or dull for us when we’re conversing. There’s always something new to learn after all.

          He is my best friend. The best support system I have ever had (besides my own body of course 😛 ) and I have been able to count on him to use the more logical reasoning portion of his brain to help me pick things apart that bug me, and in general I love being able to know we can communicate with complete honesty what we are feeling and thinking. We never consider it ‘unloading’ our problems on each other, either. There is no guilt-tripping, we never yell at each other. That’s not to say that all days are perfect, but we’re able to help give each other perspective about a situation.

          He is the first person where I was able to have that sense of being unable to imagine my life without sharing it with him. He feels like ‘home’ because nothing would make me happier than to know that the other would be there waiting for when the other got home after a day out or at work. Nothing could make me happier knowing we were happy together, and of course it helps that pretty much everything about us feels seamless and the only thing that feels like work or with effort involved is just sorting out when are good times for us to be on calls together. Which won’t be an issue once we’re more properly ‘together.’

  17. Anonymous says:

    That is crap, I only ever had one 99% match. I’m so Jealous.

  18. Matt says:

    you’re up on me then, best I can get is one 96% match.

    some people are just match perfect.

  19. There was a story about online dating and OkCupid in the New Yorker a little while back that discusses some of these things:

    One of the four founders and his wife both have accounts on the site, and apparently she is his number 1 match, and he is her number 2. (Though it seems they created their account after getting together.) Even better, “She struck up a correspondence with her No. 1, a man in England, who eventually, after she friended him on Facebook, stopped writing her back.”

  20. Anonymous says:

    What the heck!?! There are >950 users in my city and i have 3 users with 91%, 1 thats 90% and 31 with >= 80%(which includes the 4 i already mentioned). How the heck do you have 160 users matching that well!?

    I looked over 100 profiles (it took me a few hours spread across 2 days) and only 8 profiles i liked with 15 in my ok pile :(. If i message all these girls i still have <50 of the 950+ in my area. I cant understand how you got this. Most of the profiles I like are a match in the 60 range

  21. Andrew says:

    Bear in mind, too, that the percentage match can also be based on how many questions answered have the same, or acceptable answers. As an extreme example, if you’ve answered 100 and Mr Is-he-right has answered only 2, but those 2 are a 100% match for the corresponding answers you gave, does OKCupid say it’s a 99% match, leaving the 1% to account for the unanswered questions?

  22. Muesli says:

    @Andrew: OkC scales the maximum match percentage with the number of questions that were answered by both people. For a 99% match you need to have at least 100 questions in common. This is explained in detail on . The whole algorithm is actually quite straightforward and basically does what *you* tell it to do.

    @Blog post: If you get 99% matches all over the place, you a) accept too many answers: mark more answers as unacceptable when answering. b) give too much weight to common answers. If you assign “mandatory” importance (only) to things like “are you an axe murderer” and “what is bigger, earth or sun”, you will date people that are not axe murderers and that have some basic astronomic knowledge – and nothing more. Assign high importance to the things you (and only you!) find important. The latter effect is explained on in detail.

  23. MM says:

    You’re doing something wrong if you have that many 99% matches. I agree with Muesli. I also think the matching algorithm is kind of worthless if you don’t answer a lot of questions.

    For reference, I’ve answered over a thousand questions, and I don’t get any 99% matches except from people who’ve answered very few questions (which shouldn’t count). OKC is too liberal with their confidence scoring. When I’ve filtered out the people who only answered a few questions, I’m lucky to get people in the 80% range. Actually, there are only a few of them near me.

  24. Josh says:

    I’ve answered like 200 questions and I don’t have anyone in the 90’s
    highest is like 83%

  25. rakada says:

    Just found someone with 100%hate on okcupid I feel so so hated right now haha :p

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