When I first got the idea to launch CougarDatesOnline.com in early 2011 and later entering Silicon Valley to develop a series of mobile media apps around cougar dating being a lifestyle. It was really hard getting people to accept the concept as serious especially during the early years. I thank my marketing savvy wife and team of really sharp niche dating gurus with helping us find our voice different from what was being offered on other platforms dedicated to cougar dating.
We often went under attack resulting from many cyber hacks around the world and false ratings from competitors (we always knew who they were). Never, fearing any of the competition and directing our message to women interested in focusing on cougar dating as a lifestyle enhancement. Our approach for designing a platform for cougar dating by listening to our target audience is how we grew to be the largest cougar dating social network in the world!
Recently, financialpost.com featured this article “The women who fooled everyone by pretending to be executives at Ashley Madison’s sister websites“ …. Profiling how in May of 2010, Canadians turned on their televisions to see Amanda Lang interview Claudia Opdenkelder on CBC’s The National about an issue of grave importance: Discrimination against cougars.
Citing: In an interview at a bar, the evening newscast’s guest anchor introduced Opdenkelder as “the founder of an online dating site,” CougarLife.com, that helps older women and younger men (ahem, “cubs”) pair up. But as Lang reported — and what would soon become an international news story — there was a powerful killjoy standing in the way of cougars and cubs and their quest for intimacy. Google Inc. was banning Cougar Life’s advertisements, explaining to Lang in a statement that it does not allow “adult” dating sites (while it doesn’t ban less hookup-focused sites, like Match.com).
It was a compelling story — one undeniably made even better by the fact that the founder, Opdenkelder, was blonde, curvy, media savvy, and more than willing to go on television in a tight-fitting pencil skirt and explain why cougars like her deserve love too. Over time, Opdenkelder would give voice to that struggle in The New York Times, The Globe and Mail and this newspaper. There were many more magazine profiles of her, occasionally featuring cheesecake photos of Opdenkelder herself, and TV reports. Usually she was described as the founder or president of Cougar Life.
Too bad it wasn’t true.
Revealing: A Financial Post investigation has found that Opdenkelder is one of at least three women who were hired to pose as founders, executives or board members of niche dating websites owned by Avid Life Media Inc., the parent company of the adultery website Ashley Madison.
Even before this story was uncovered in the media we sensed that there were women who wanted the cougar dating lifestyle and a true platform to explore from feeling free without being judged. A trustworthy environment that was organic and why we don’t focus on growing through advertisements but organic relationships.
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