Believe it or not, I often defend Jdate against its critics. Not the Jdate members. Too many are indefensible. I'm talking about Jdate the company. Yes, their monthly fee is high, but $39.99 a month isn't that outrageous if you're serious about meeting someone. I've had plenty of first dates that cost me more. Granted, their customer service department is staffed by those who couldn't cut it working the drive thru at Wendy's, but that's true of most companies. I consider myself lucky if I speak to any customer service rep nowadays for whom English is a third language. And yes, Jdate lies about the number of active members it has, but anyone who's logged on and seen the same profiles over and over, knows Jdate has nowhere near the active membership it claims to have. It's all about marketing to get you to buy what they're selling, and that's fine. It's a business, and they have shareholders to whom they must answer. Plus, someone needs to pay for that huge billboard in Time Square.
I've even praised Jdate's clean and user friendly interface. Other sites are so poorly designed or full of ads that you're often not sure where to click to search for profiles. But the love fest stopped yesterday when I logged on to Jdate, hit "search," and saw Kathy Griffin as one of my matches. At first glance, I assumed it was someone screwing around, or a woman who actually looked a lot like Kathy Griffin. When I clicked on the profile, I realized it was an ad promoting her show on Bravo. She'd even written a fake profile replete with the same tired shtick about Clay Aiken and Oprah that made me want to leave the room the first 800 times I heard it.
I understand that the Jdate execs probably thought this was a clever little marketing ploy, and maybe it is. But was Kathy Griffin really the best choice for a fake profile? Does a company that already has enough image issues really need to promote the poster child for mediocrity in entertainment? Surely there were better options. Doesn't Tootie from "The Facts of Life" have anything to plug? What about the girl who played the robot on "Small Wonder?" I'm sure she could use the career boost.