Digital love: Webutante Ball draws New York’s tech singles

pickup webutante ball silicon alley tech singles
The Webutante Ball is known for being one of the city’s biggest tech events each year.
Credit: Insider Images

Internet Week‘s Webutante Ball is well-known for being one of New York’s biggest tech parties, but it also functions as the perfect pickup spot for Silicon Alley singles.

Founder Richard Blakeley said unlike at other male-dominated tech events, the Ball’s gender ratio is fairly even.

“Most tech parties in New York are after work drinks at a bar where you come with your laptop on your back, sweating, and stand awkwardly in a corner with a bunch of other guys,” said Blakeley.

But at the Webutante Ball, tech scenesters dress to kill in tuxedos and cocktail dresses. Add a DJ and free-flowing booze and it’s no surprise that the party becomes a hot spot for ambitious young people in tech looking to exchange phone numbers – and not just to network.

Lisa Besserman moved to Argentina in 2012 to found Startup Buenos Aires, but that hasn’t stopped her from attending every Webutante Ball since it started in 2009.

“I was single for the first couple of them and I always walked away with a few numbers,” she said. “It’s so laid-back and you’re with like-minded people and it’s really great to meet people you have a connection with.”

Graphic designer Nick McGlynn admitted to getting lucky at a Webutante Ball in the past. “It’s a prom for tech nerds, and I mean, what better place to hook up than at a prom?” he asked. “You see these people at networking mixers and other media events and panels, but you never actually get to hang out and flirt, so given the opportunity, those ides make other events finally come to fruition.”

pickup webutante ball silicon alley tech singles
The Webutante Ball is a party for tech insiders – some of whom are looking for a a hot date.
Credit: Insider Images

At least one couple is walking down the aisle thanks to the geek chic bash. “I famously introduced two very unlikely people to each other at a Webutante Ball – and they are getting married,” bragged journalist Julia Allison. Those two people are Ari Melber, co-host of MSNBC’s “The Cycle,” and Drew Grant, a writer at the New York Observer. “It’s sort of the Met Gala for that particular scene in New York – but it’s a pretty dorky scene,” added Allison.

It’s a scene that isn’t afraid to poke fun at itself: Every Webutante Ball features a king and queen, and couples are encouraged to strike prom poses in their photos.

Alison Flood, director of business development at ICED Media, helped organize the 2010 Webutante Ball, but had a hard time flirting because of some game-killing guests: her parents. On Tuesday, she will be unfettered and ready to mingle. “I’m not bringing my dad this year, so who knows what can happen? It’s anyone’s game,” she said.

For tickets and information on the Webutante Ball, visit the event’s website here.

Follow Andrea Park on Twitter: @andreapark



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Rethinking the NYC subway map and mass transit…

Max Roberts has never ridden New York City's subway — but he's thought about system's twists and turns more than most daily riders. A 47-year-old…

National

U.S. coastal flooding on the rise, government study…

By Ryan McNeill(Reuters) - Flooding is increasing in frequency along much of the U.S. coast, and the rate of increase is accelerating along the Gulf…

Local

NYPD: Suspect dead after two U.S. Marshals, cop…

A suspect was dead after a shooting that left two U.S. Marshals and an NYPD detective wounded in the West Village Monday afternoon, officials said.

International

PHOTO: Queen Elizabeth pulls off epic photobomb

The selfie / photobomb has gone viral.

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

Entertainment

'Kim Kardashian: Hollywood' game easter eggs and cheats

"Kim Kardashian: Hollywood" is the hottest game of the moment. Here are its best easter eggs as well as some tips and tricks to speed your way to the top.

Television

Kacy Catanzaro credits mind over body in "American…

Kacy Catanzaro credits her victory to mental focus and upper body strength.

Entertainment

Q&A: The brains behind 'Kim Kardashian: Hollywood'

"Kim Kardashian: Hollywood" is the hottest game of the moment. We talked with Christopher Locke of Glu Canada to find out more about developing the game.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

MLB

Joe Torre: I'm in Hall of Fame because…

Joe Torre spent 18 years putting together a near Hall of Fame career as a player. But it was the 12 years he spent as…

MLB

Yankees GM Brian Cashman breaks down art of…

The action frequently accelerates as the non-waiver trade deadline approaches, as it will on Thursday.

Food

Zagat releases '30 Under 30' list

Zagat releases a list of the people changing the food and drink industry across the country.

Wellbeing

Fist bump gets respect as clean alternative to…

Though long used to give props, the fist bump is getting some actual respect. The gesture, once dubbed a “terrorist fist jab,” could become the new…

Wellbeing

Fist bump gets respect as clean alternative to…

Though long used to give props, the fist bump is getting some actual respect. The gesture, once dubbed a “terrorist fist jab,” could become the new…

Tech

Amazon offers 3D printing to customize earrings, bobble…

By Deepa SeetharamanSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc will offer 3D printing services that allow customers to customize and build earrings, bobble head toys and…