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There are not many people they can be friends with that are deaf,” he said, particularly if they live outside big cities.
Comfortable with technology The site is run as a second business by Haines, who’s first job is United TTY.com, a firm that sells assistive technologies to the deaf community.
The number of people fluent in American Sign Language is much smaller, however, fewer than 1 million people nationwide, according to Robert Pollard, director of the Deaf Wellness Center at the University of Rochester.Founder Paul Haines says the site has nearly 4,000 members, including about 1,000 who pay a month to be “deluxe” members.Already, he said, three couples credit Deaf Match International with their weddings.Online dating is a natural fit for the deaf, he said.“They are so used to being able to communicate by typing when they talk to someone on the phone,” he said.
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And the need to connect goes beyond shared experiences, said Pollard, of the University of Rochester.