Diana Marszalek 01 Jun 2023 // 3:01PM GMT
NEW YORK — OkCupid global comms head Michael Kaye, who’s been at the forefront of making the dating app more inclusive, will now also be overseeing brand marketing and communications for Archer, parent Match Group’s new dating platform for gay, bisexual and gay men.
Archer, which debuted today, will be available in New York City throughout the summer and roll out nationally within a year.
In a LinkedIn post, Kaye said the app has been a year in the making. “When we started speaking with queer men we realized how badly they needed an app like Archer. There was a collective sigh of relief that a new kind of app was coming,” he said.
Kaye also said seeing Archer come to fruition is deeply personal.
“For those of you who don’t know, I was closeted for over 20 years. When I began to come to terms with my identity as a gay man, dating apps were the only way for me to connect with other gay men. And the only gay dating apps available to me reinforced the idea that queer love and connection should be secretive and hidden,” he wrote.
“That experience was traumatizing. My first ‘interaction’ with my own community left me feeling ashamed and isolated. But exactly ten years from that moment I found myself working at Match Group discussing creating an app for my community. One that celebrates our queerness,” he said.
Kaye, one of PRovoke Media’s 2021 Innovator 25, joined OkCupid in July 2019, and worked his way up the ranks to global marketing & brand communications manager over the next four years (minus a short stint as global communications manager at LinkedIn.). Kaye’s successes at OkCupid include his work increasing press placements by 195% during the Covid pandemic. He did that in part, by telling the story on how OkCupid normalized disclosing gender pronouns — resulting in a double-digit increase in non-binary people signing up on the platform.
Kaye also teaches public relations principles and practices at New York University.