The company doesn’t restrict the app to certain cities, or schools like Facebook originally did to beat the density problem.
Instead, it relies on the fact that if you’re in the middle of nowhere you probably don’t have friends on it to pull you in.
Now the startup’s COO, Morgenstern has agreed to give Tech Crunch the deepest look yet at Raya, where the pretty, popular and powerful meet each other.
“Raya is a utility for introducing you to people who can change your life.
You’re also not allowed to screenshot, and you’ll be chastized with a numbered and filed warning if you do. You’re not swiping through infinite anybodies and sorting through reams of annoying messages.Though people already self-segregate based on where they go to socialize. Morgenstern refuses to tell me how much Raya has raised, how it started or anything about its founding team beyond that they’re a “.” But he did reveal some of the core tenets that have reportedly attracted celebrities like DJs Diplo and Skrillex, actors Elijah Wood and Amy Schumer and musicians Demi Lovato and John Mayer, plus scores of Instagram models and tattooed creative directors.isn’t a swiping game for fun and personal validation.In that sense, Raya wants to expand those moments in life when you’re eager and open to meet people, like the first days of college.“At Raya we don’t think that’s something that should only happen when you’re single or when you’re 20 or when you move to a new city.” The bottomless pits of Tinder and Linked In can make meeting people online feel haphazard to the point of exhaustion.People act right because they don’t want to lose access.Raya recreates the feel of dating or networking in a small town, where your reputation follows you.And through their bio and extended slideshows of photos set to their favorite song, you get a better understanding of someone than from just a few profile pics on other apps.Users can always report people they’ve connected with if they act sketchy, though with the new map feature I was dismayed to learn they can’t yet report people they haven’t seen or rejected in the app.And it’s for professional networking as well as dating, with parallel profiles for each. “I learned that not everyone who leaves Facebook, their next thing turns to gold,” Morgenstern laughs.Launched in March 2015, Raya has purposefully flown under the radar. So he sold it to Raya for equity and brought four of his employees to build new experiences for the app.