What Happened to Plenty of Fish Dating Site? 5 Reasons It’s Worse

If you’ve been an active user of Plenty of Fish dating site in the past, you must have observed some odd changes to the website.

Changes in the user interface, billing system, technicalities, and worst of all, efficiency in fulfilling it’s supposed purpose – finding love.

For everyone who’s familiar with the old Plenty of Fish dating site, this is a real issue. It makes the platform very less useful than it used to be.

If you’ve also had a share of experience in the changes that negatively affected Plenty of Fish, you are most likely curious to know what happened to it.

This app was among the best of its kind a couple of years back. Many reportedly enjoyed it’s service during the COVID-19 pandemic which kept us indoors.

But here it is, getting a lot of bad reviews all of a sudden. Something got to be behind the sudden change of this platform. I mean, these types of platforms don’t just deteriorate overnight without a cause, do they?

So, what happened?

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Follow along as we take a stroll back in time to the history of this internet giant and see if we can gather some clues about it’s downfall.

What Happened to Plenty of Fish Dating Site?

A lot. Yeah, quite a lot of things has happened to this popular dating platform through the years.

Starting from it’s transfer of ownership back in 2015 to it’s monetization changes which began to take place quite recently, different changes had been made to the Plenty of Fish dating site.

All of these changes have in one way or the other affected this site and it’s productivity.

Let’s take a closer look at some major changes which had been made to Plenty of Fish.

1. It had a change in ownership

That happened in 2015. July 14th, 2015 to be specific. Markus Frind, the founder of Plenty of Fish sold the app to the Match Group for some 575 million dollars.

The transfer of ownership of the app in particular isn’t such a strange thing though. It’s quite common for young entrepreneurs to sell their internet companies for hundreds of dollars to more established companies.

And it seems he didn’t really had a very long-term plan for the site anyways. According to him, he built Plenty of Fish “as a way to improve my resume.”

As at that time, the Match Group was a subsidiary of Tinder and OkCupid owner IAC. This transfer of ownership marked the beginning of a series of changes of the platform.

2. There were changes in site design and features

The Match Group didn’t just acquire Plenty of Fish for fun, they meant to take it a whole new level, making it a very productive and successful platform.

And what better way to go about that than to give it a better appearance and pack of features, one that will make it better than that which its original developer sold to them.

On march 2020, they rolled out their notable live streaming feature after partnering with MeetMe, Scout, and Zoosk.

These are popular dating platforms as well. The Match Group wanted their users to meet with members of other dating platforms so as to provide a larger audience for their users and improve their user experience on the app.

The updates weren’t limited to that. They also added some extras features including digital gifts and even games to their platform.

Somehow though, it seems these extra features didn’t really serve their purpose so well as the majority of people began to complain about these features.

Eventually, certain features which the app previously had began to be removed, and some free ones turned to paid features, making it more frustrating for many users.

The changes to the site’s structure has indeed had a strong impact the application more negatively that positively.

3. There were changes in the site’s marketing strategy

Apart from changes in site structure, the Match Group also made a change in the marketing strategy.

The original developer didn’t really do much of paid advertisement. He relied mostly on word of mouth of a new free dating site to get his platform to the eyes of people.

That method worked pretty well mainly because as at that time, most dating platforms were paid ones. So, building one which allowed users to get what they’ve been getting on paid platforms for free was quite a banger.

Within a year, Plenty of Fish hit over 10,000 users, earning him a steady monthly income of about $3,300 from the popular display ad network – Google AdSense.

Upon its acquisition by the Match Group, Plenty of Fish had a change of marketing strategy. They took to popular social media platforms to promote their newly-acquired site.

The Match Group ran ads on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, TikTok and other popular social media platforms, adjusting the settings to specifically target people interested in online dating.

This move enabled them reach wider audience and boosting their user base. With time, it grew to over 170 million registered users with about 4 million of them active everyday.

The problem though was that, like other platforms, the more the growth, the more the nuisance. Eventually, spamming began to get rampant in the platform, and it also got a data breach in 2019.

Alond with the favorable impact of the new marketing strategy came the bad sides. This contributed to the issues surrounding the platform’s sustainability.

4. The 2019 data breach

One notable event in the lifetime of Plenty of Fish is the data breach which occured in 2019.

A researcher found out that certain information which was supposed to be private was open to the public.

Quite a number of third party applications began to surface which could effectively scrape some sensitivity information including user’s real names and zip codes.

Also, some third party applications were able to video record live chats on the IOS app, saving them and uploading the saved video to the internet.

This was a big blow to POF. When the news got out, the Metch Group immediately swung into action and fixed the breaches. But the deed has been done.

Many users lost trust in the app. and changed their perception of the platform’s security.

5. Integration of premium features

One of the things which made Plenty of Fish popular real fast was it’s free model, thanks to Frind. He only integrated a few premium features which didn’t really interfere with the users’ enjoyment of the platform.

Obviously, the Match Group couldn’t do with the little income the platform generated and as a result, integrated a number of paid features into the site.

Most of these features were available for free in the past. They either put a limit to how much of it you can enjoy on a daily basis or completely monetized it.

It made the platform become even more annoying for many users. Imagine chatting with a match only to suddenly get hit with some daily messages exceeded warning. Annoying isn’t it?

Some other areas in which Plenty of Fish was monetized include:

  • Seeing who read your messages
  • Profile boosting
  • More profile insights
  • Advanced search filters

The move favored the app owners, at least for the first few months after it was implemented. But what about the users?

A lot of POF users took to social media platforms particularly Reddit and even Quora, complaining about the changes in Plenty of Fish and how they suddenly have to pay for everything.

Many who fancied the free model of the platform soon dropped out of their accounts and went for other free ones, never to return to Plenty of Fish again.

This is among the most recent changes to POF which made it worsen as a dating site.


Plenty of Fish was a great site, one which stood firmly ahead it’s contemporaries as one of the best free online dating sites in the globe.

However, changes to the site’s ownership, design, marketing strategy, security, and monetization has each pierced a hole into the authority and trust it long held.

While Plenty of Fish still stands as one of the most popular dating platforms in the internet, it’s user base has crashed quite significantly.

If you find yourself in similar shoes with the many ex-users of POF, you might want to consider switching to a better dating site such as Millionaire Match or Christian Mingles.

Remember, dating is an important part of your life, and so you shouldn’t let some crook site mess with it. Your future partner is out there, don’t waste any more time in finding them!

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