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Dating Website Excludes "the Riff Raff"

The niche dating site BeautifulPeople.com describes itself as a place where you can "Connect with beautiful men and women in your local area and from around the world." According to their website, here's how you can join what they call their elite online club: "Applicants are required to be voted in by existing members of the opposite sex. Members rate new applicants over a 48 hour period based on whether or not they find the applicant 'beautiful'. Should applicants secure enough positive votes from members, they will be granted membership to the BeautifulPeople community." This screening process allows members to avoid what they call "the riff raff."

This dating pool for the genetically blessed came under fire recently for ousting some 5,000 members for packing on the pounds during the holidays. The site says that it has a "strict ban on ugly people," and issued a news release saying the cuts were made after many members posted photographs of themselves looking plump in the weeks after Thanksgiving. Robert Hintze, the site's founder, said "Letting fatties roam the site is a direct threat to our business model."

A company spokesman defended the actions. "Is it elitist?" He said, "Yes, it is, because our members want it to be. Is it lookist? Yes, it is, because our members want it to be. Is it PC? No, it's not, but it's honest."

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