Love beyond the grave may excite the likes of Nicholas Sparks but in reality, once the customary tears are shed, we move on. Do we, for instance, stop to think about what the dating scene is like in the afterlife? And whether dear Aunt Jane, may god bless her soul, finally discovered love? Lets face it: we just don’t pay enough respect to departed souls. However, a four-year-old website attempts to change that. Well, almost.
Ghostsingles.com, the brainchild of 38-year-old Utah-based web programmer Randy Tayler is a website exclusively for ghosts looking to find love. Mortals who try to sign up are snubbed by a message calling you on your fib, ‘You’re not a ghost!’. The form insists that you specify how you died — mysteriously/tragically/suddenly/horribly. It also has a spooky, blurry black and white photograph of a lady which fades away if you look at it for too long. And the only ‘members’ that the website has are 12 profiles created by the founder himself.
The website has 31,000 ‘likes’ on Facebook. On Twitter, Tayler clarifies some very pressing questions like ‘Hey, is this site real because my brother thinks it is and he couldn’t sleep for 2 days’.
By Tayler’s admission, the website is a joke, but apparently a joke taken seriously enough by Time magazine and Huffington Post which have written about the website recently.
In a short interview, Tayler talks about how he came up with the idea, why it exists and how thousands of people have tried to join the website.
This might be the strangest question I have ever asked anyone: How and when did you come up with the idea of having a dating website for ghosts?
I created the website four years ago. I just thought the idea was funny — a fake dating website for ghosts! Apparently lots of people agree it’s pretty funny. Though, I must add, a lot of people don’t understand that it’s just a joke.
Why did you come up with a website for ghosts? I dont know, maybe you know a ghost?
Well, ghosts were a natural choice for a dating website that nobody is allowed or able to join. I could have chosen vampires, zombies, elves or aliens, but I went with ghosts. I’m a pretty average guy — I just like to make people laugh. I’ve performed in multiple comedy groups doing improvisational comedy and sketch comedy, and I hope to someday be a writer.
I am sure you get this a lot – but is this really worth your time?
It doesn’t take any more of my time, really — I created it, and the website does the rest. It was a one-time joke that I thought was funny, and I make a little bit of money from the ads I have on the site.
How many people have tried to join your website? Are you thinking of starting a real dating website?
If people fill out the form to join the website, I get a notification. So far, thousands have tried to sign up in the last year, so between 5-10 will fill out the form every day. I’ve considered starting a real dating website, but I don’t think the headache would be worth the money.
What kind of feedback did you receive for the website?
On Twitter, lots of folks are just perplexed, but lots more think it’s hilarious, or the best website on the planet. Certainly the best dating site.
Where did you get those faded, black and white pictures from?
There was an old genealogy website that had lots of photos — people who found the photos, but didn’t know who they were, so they uploaded them, hoping that somebody else might have a matching photo and know the name. Then I blurred them and made them look as “ghosty” as possible.
Time magazine has said that they have no idea why your website exists. So why does it exist?