By Tyler Wayne Patterson /// Web & Social Media Manager
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Have you ever found love—or at the least a hook up—from the Lewis & Clark Missed Connections Facebook page? I’m going to assume no. This makes me think the page has, ultimately, been a failure.
If you are a regular poster (or viewer) of LC Missed Connections, and it has never resulted in a romantic or sexual encounter, you’ve missed an opportunity. Otherwise, the site is nothing but a center for community-building jokes and flattery. Considering that platonic versions of the page have ceased to become nearly as popular, if the site doesn’t result in connecting students romantically or sexually, what is the point?
For those of you who have never heard of LC Missed Connections, the Facebook page is a space for students (or anyone, really) to anonymously submit “missed connections” about people they admire. The page’s posts range from traditional, Craigslist-style missed connections post—where the poster does not know the name of the person they desire—to friendly shoutouts of individuals or entire groups. The page has posted over 7,650 posts.
I was only the subject of one missed connection (I know, I’m surprised it has been just one, too). The posts don’t really lead to any connections; they’re fun and flattering, but that’s it.
Many posts are obviously written by the subject’s friends as a platonic way of boosting a friend’s self esteem. But too many of the more romantic or sexual posts are written by students who know the identity of the person they are writing about. If you regularly see the person that you are writing the missed connection about, or if you know their name, is it really a missed connection? If there is a spark, what is holding back the poster from approaching the postee?
I know the answer to these questions is obvious: the fear of rejection. That’s why Tinder has been so successful as a dating app. With Tinder, you are only matched with people after you both have identified a positive interest in the other user by swiping right on their picture.
You might think I’m reading too much into these posts. But there have been failed attempts at platonic versions of missed connections in the past. If you weren’t hoping to see a post about you from that cutie in your math class, you wouldn’t be on the Missed Connections page. You’d be on a LC shoutouts page.
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Love is inherently vulnerable. Successful relationships begin when you put yourself in vulnerable situations, and do better if you continue to safely place yourself out of your comfort zone. If you can’t muster up the courage to approach another person, you better stick to Tinder. But confidence is sexy, and if you can sense a spark, you might be pleasantly surprised by putting yourself out there.