Facebook experimented on its users by peppering their home pages with depressing status messages. Users were mad. The FTC is investigating. This is old news.
Or at least it was. On Monday, OkCupid, a freemium online dating site, announced proudly on its blog that it runs experiments on users too. Some of these seem like no big deal (removing all pictures from the site for a few hours), while others seem like a very big deal (lying to users about compatibility ratings to test the effectiveness of their matching algorithm).
And yet, nobody is mad at OkCupid. Why? And where should the line be drawn for research on your company's customers?