The History of AdultFriendFinder
When it comes to finding cybersex or finding partners for physical sex, there isn't a name that come up more than AdultFriendFinder. It is one of the biggest names in the sex industry. Millions of users have used the site and continue to use it.
What has made AdultFriendFinder such a big success and how did it happen? We are going to take a look at the answers to those questions and more in today's article.
Andrew Conru and His WebPersonals
AdultFriendFinder has a long history that stems from other websites. In 1994 Andrew Conru created a website called WebPersonals. WebPersonals has often been credited as the first dating website on the internet and it was popular among those who were able to have a computer and internet access in 1994. So popular in fact, that Conru was able to sell WebPersonals in 1995 and start developing a new site.
1996 - FriendFinder.com
In 1996 Conru released his next website, FriendFinder.com. FriendFinder was among the first websites designed for social networking. People could connect to the website and find new people around the world. And people did. It didn't take long for FriendFinder to start attracting people to the site. But one internet rule was yet to be understood at that time.
If you build it on the internet and it can be used for porn, it will be.
Andrew Conru started to notice that users were utilizing the FriendFinder website to both talk dirty and to send pornographic pictures. And it only took a matter of days for this to start happening. This was one of the first times that a social media company found that people would use their platform for graphic content.
While it surprised Conru, he was also intrigued. Conru didn't necessarily want FriendFinder to become a place for people to be dirty, so he had to do something.
FriendFinder Niche Sites - AdultFriendFinder
An idea came to Andrew Conru and he started a separate FriendFinder. He created AdultFriendFinder. A website designed to have the naughty content that people were using on FriendFinder and to act as a release valve to keep FriendFinder a clean site. AdultFriendFinder was just one of the first FriendFinder niche sites which went on to span senior dating, church dating, Hispanic dating, Cybersex chat, and BDSM dating.
But in 2007 the company that managed FriendFinder and AdultFriendFinder was having trouble staying above water. Venture capital was becoming scarce and they needed to do something. PenthouseMedia Group bought Various Inc. (the company behind FriendFinder) for 500 million dollars, a huge amount. The purchase eventually prompted Various Inc. to become FriendFinder Networks.
For a while FriendFinder Networks managed to do well. Even having deals with other brands, such as Flo Rida releasing a music video on the website. But in 2013 the company filed for bankruptcy and was released to the control of Andrew Conru once again. Andrew Conru is now the CEO again.
Throughout its time on the internet AdultFriendFinder, whether it was profitable or not, has always been quite popular. It has made top dating lists, and was in the top 100 most popular websites in 2007.
All of this is not without criticism though. People have brought up various complaints and questions about the company and the website. It wasn't only people complaining against online adult content either. One of the biggest complaints has been that AdultFriendFinder does not stop charges on customer cards after they cancel their membership.
The accusation of not stopping charges is not just frivolous. Employees have come out and said that often times customers won't even notice that the payments have continued. Hundreds of cases were launched against AdultFriendFinder in civil court and the company was criminally indicted by the FTC. That practice has since stopped and it seems most of the complaints stemmed from when Penthouse Media Group owned the company.
AdultFriendFinder continues to be one of the most popular adult cybersex dating sites on the internet. People turn to it for just about any kind of experience, whether they are looking for real life meetups or for cybersex. This has led them to have the claim of the worlds largest adult dating community. From what we have seen, there isn't any sign of the company closing its doors again soon.