By the time Austin native Amanda Bradford was in her last semester of graduate school at Stanford, she had already secured $2 million in funding to create a dating app unlike any other.
“The League is a platform for power couples that promotes relationship equality, where the users are looking for their intellectual equal, someone that will see them as a true partner, and who is enlightened enough to realize the gender stereotypes present in our parents’ generation are outdated and irrelevant in today’s world,” Bradford says. “Our users want a partner who will support them in chasing their dreams but will also be chasing their own.”
The League has launched in several cities, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, Washington, Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Miami and London. It will be available in Dallas, Austin and Houston on June 27.
“When ranking the top 15 cities for aspiring power couples, Dallas came in strong at No. 12,” Bradford says. “Now is the perfect time for Dallas to get on board. It is clear that there are tons of ambitious, highly intelligent men and women in Dallas who are single and looking for other career-oriented, likeminded people.”
If you are in search of someone of a specific height, of the same religion or who is “attractive enough to look good in black and white photos,” as the website says, then you’re in luck. The app uses an algorithm to match its users based on their preferences, including gender, age, education and ethnicity.
The algorithm also deprioritizes people with high 'flakiness' scores (people who never message or don't reply to messages from people they’ve matched with). But don’t get too excited. The League is curated through an admission-based model, meaning you’ll be vetted before you’re approved as a user.
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“We have an internal system that shortlists groups of users based on degree, education institution, current or past professional title, industry, number of referrals and the number of users inside that fit their preferences,” Bradford says. “If you’re extremely picky, you may wait much longer. We then have a team of specialists that review profile photos and selects the draft for that day or week.”
Once you’re in, you will be assigned a “concierge” as a wingman. The concierge will give you feedback on your profile, open liners and suggestions on how to get friends off the wait list. The app also requires double authentication using Facebook and LinkedIn accounts in order to block known connections, saving you the embarrassment of being matched with a co-worker or boss. Unlike Tinder, you’ll only see three to four potential matches per day.
Bradford came up with the idea for The League after becoming frustrated with the superficiality of other dating apps.
“I wanted to know more about each person than just what they looked like,” she says. “Users' pictures on The League are not about being good looking versus not. It’s about quality. This is a community for people that are attracted to intelligence, ambition, drive and passion, and for people that want a relationship that is a partnership of equals. The women in The League are as successful, if not more so, than the men and are looking to meet a partner who values and encourages that.”