But all that is a far cry from a company’s Slack administrator actively installing a bot that encourages employee hookups.The Feeld Slack bot is interesting not because it’s likely to be widely adopted—“This would be a very disruptive technology in the office.Last week, the dating app Feeld released a bot that, theoretically at least, lets you find out if your co-workers have crushes on you.The way it works is this: Once the bot is installed in the office chat platform Slack, you message the bot with the name of your crush. If they have also messaged the bot with a confession of love for you, the bot will let you know you like each other.Having feelings for a person is so human, why do people have to keep ignoring them or hiding them just because society says so?”I think he may be overestimating the taboo on workplace romances.
published several trend pieces about romances between co-workers during the ’80s and ’90s, sometimes suggesting that since there were more women in the workforce, and since people were working longer hours, “the workplace becomes one of the likeliest places to make a match,” as a 1988 article put it. According to a study published in 2012, straight people in the ’80s and ’90s were just as likely to meet their partner at work as they were to meet them at a bar, and those methods were second only to meeting through friends.The presence of a Slack app on your phone creates the awareness that you find your soulmate at any moment. And whatever the seeming simplicity of a bot that just reveals mutual interest, it would undoubtedly only create more uncertainty and anxiety.Combining the two would only exacerbate “that perpetual sense of possibility, but also the possibility of disappointment,” in Weigel’s words—dating apps’ stock-in-trade. What if you type someone’s name in and six months go by before they reciprocate and your feelings have changed?“Since the beginning Feeld’s mission was to make our society more accepting and open,” Feeld’s founder and “chief inspiration officer” Dimo Trifonov told me in an email.“You can say that Feeld is for forward-thinking humans who don’t put themselves in predefined frameworks.” Society has “tried so hard to make work this cold place where [we] just earn money,” he goes on, “that the concept of bringing feelings there might scare some people.