Canada-based Ashley Madison, the world’s largest infidelity website, is launching its services in Britain, and its founder who is a faithfully married businessman denies doing anything wrong, The Times newspaper reported on Friday.
“It’s easy to vilify me… But I’m not doing anything wrong. I didn’t invent infidelity,” said Noel Biderman, the 39-year-old founder of Ashley Madison, a dating website that is primarily marketed for people already in a relationship.
Biderman, from Toronto, was visiting London to promote the launch of his website ashleymadison.com with its slogan “Life is short. Have an affair!” The slogan used to be: “When monogamy becomes monotony.”
He argues that launching dating services in Britain was not based on business expansionist motives but rather on growing client desires and interests, citing a number of 60,000 Britons seeking to join the dating website. He expected one million “Londonians” to join in after the launch.
Biderman added that women account for 53 percent of sign-ups from Britain and that they exhibit an “aggressive” approach to dating American men.
“Quite funny, really, when you consider our usual habit of playing dead until the man gets in touch…Hey, maybe we are becoming more American at last,” he said.
Still, the website faces tough challenges in attracting people to accept it even in “liberal” Britain with “aggressive-dating” women. During his visit to London, Biderman was met by hostile journalists and faced a thrashing from a therapist on a TV show, according to The Times.
In the United States, the Ashley Madison founder was likened to a “heroin dealer” and his website's adds were banned on facebook and in many mainstream television channels, including CNN and Fox News.
The website now, nine years since it was launched, has seven million users, according to Biderman, who said it would take him more than $100 million to consider selling it.
Reality full of infidelity
Besides an astute approach to business, Biderman exhibits an appreciation of a reality perceived to be “full of infidelity.”
“Every society is full of infidelity. Whether it’s strip clubs, prostitution ... go look on any listings website — I don’t know what you have here but we have Craig’s List,” he said.
“There are so many prostitution postings, you couldn’t possibly say that the demand wasn’t there. Forget what some researcher has told you, look at the real numbers. Understand what Las Vegas is telling you,” he added.
Biderman grew up in a family of strong moral values and in a community that values relationships, but for him this is an exception to his rule about monogamy. He said he believes his website helps families as a “happiness peddler” and a “net improvement to society.”
He also argues fervently that his Ashley Madison dating website works within the framework of moral decency. “Society is better off because I’ve created Ashley Madison. Instead of using escorts or prostitutes, where drugs or abuse are often involved, they are doing it with like-minded people in a community like this,” Biderman said.
*(Written by Mustapha Ajbaili)
Society is better off because I’ve created Ashley Madison. Instead of using escorts or prostitutes