Ashley Madison, the “infidelity dating site” that was the target of a massive data breach by hackers last year – a scandal that was linked to suicide reports and entangled reality TV stars, YouTube personalities and politicians alike – is rebranding.
The site, whose CEO Noel Biderman stepped down in the wake of the hack, will still be known as Ashley Madison, though its parent company, formerly Avid Life Media, will now be known as Ruby Corp. Oh, and it is also changing its slogan from “Life is short. Have an affair.” to “Find your moment.”
The move comes in the wake of a Federal Trade Commission investigation looking into the site’s use of computer programs, or bots, to impersonate female users and engage with male users.
New CEO Rob Segal is well versed in the language of digital startup neologisms, writing in a statement that his first step is “to completely rebuild the company as a relevant, digital dating innovator that truly cares for our customers.”
“‘Life is short. Have an affair.'” was “a limiting label that’s outdated and doesn’t speak to the wide variety of connections people find on Ashley Madison,” Segal said.
Ashley Madison also got some spiffy new commercials, all of which look like unauthorized Lifetime retellings of Fifty Shades of Grey.
The company’s new slogan – again, “Find your moment” – is at least vaguely reminiscent of the language Tinder used on Twitter defending itself after Vanity Fair published an article called “Tinder and the Dawn of the Dating Apocalypse.” “Tinder creates experiences,” the site’s Twitter account railed, adding “meaningful connections” and later, “amazing experiences” to that argument.
Interestingly, all the ads feature music by the same U.K.-based musician, Tom Rosenthal, whose soft-hued but wistful indie-ish tunes animate the shorts that feature a “content but bored couple,” “a woman in a relationship” who’s “reminded of what it feels like to be desired” and “a single man” who “experiences an unexpected moment of connection on his daily commute.”
New president James Millership said that the name Ruby was chosen for its “sensual, feminine quality” that “connotes value and fits with the fresh start our company is undergoing.” And connections. And experiences. And precious gemstones, we guess.