Friday, February 11, 2011

Strictly Platonic - Looking for Friendship on Craigslist

As you know, I write for a newspaper. I will sporadically be posting some of my articles here for you to enjoy!


11/27/10
It happens kind of like this. You browse for a while, looking for something interesting, or rather, something you’re interested in. You can’t seem to find what you’re looking for, so you decide to hit the post button, put in your catchy title and the exact details as to what, or rather who, you are looking for and click the submit button. Yes, I am talking about Internet personals.

Seeing as many people in our society don’t have a clue as to what Internet personals entail, I have decided to take it upon myself to investigate what you may find in the personals section on sites like Craigslist, Kijiji and other Internet classified providers.

Underneath the personals section you can find subheadings such as “strictly platonic,” “causal encounters,” “dating,” etc.. When someone posts their ad to the site you can search it then reply to the original poster if you find that you are interested in their ad.

Over the past few years personal classified advertisements have taken a hit. A dark shadow looms over the personals section on many of these websites. Once you start browsing these sites it is not hard to tell why; the majority of these sites are overrun with spam and porn advertisements. So the question arises, can you still find any legitimate Internet personal ads?

The first place I hit up was the “strictly platonic” section on Craigslist. I figured that most weirdos are not looking for casual friendship, so it was a safe place to start; turns out I was wrong. Once I clicked on the subheading of strictly platonic I was greeted with a page entitled “Warning & Disclaimer.” This was obviously not a good start, and I knew then and there that I could throw all my expectations of finding slightly legitimate ads out the window.

After reading the disclaimer in full, I clicked on the link that allowed me to gain access to the strictly platonic page. What I saw disgusted me — ad upon ad that had graphically crude titles. But after all, I had low expectations, so how let down could I really be?

Amongst the many nasty ads I also came upon a few honest ads for people who would just like to talk. There were some older people in their fifties, but there was a startling amount of people in their early and mid-twenties. Who knew that people used Craigslist to find friends?

The majority of the other sites that I visited no longer had personal advertisement sections; they instead directed you toward well known dating sites such as Lavalife.com.

Although I did not find much serious material on Craigslist’s strictly platonic personals site, I was not entirely let down. I went in with mixed expectations and found more or less what I had anticipated. I found more legitimate ads than I expected on the site.

So, if university life is lonely, hit up the Craigslist personals. Maybe you’ll find a new friend.

This post is taken from www.themanitoban.com, the University of Manitoba Student Newspaper. It has been displayed on this site with the permission of the Editor and Chief of the Manitoban.

3 comments:

  1. Maybe I should hit that up... What could possibly go wrong?

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