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31-Jan-2017 14:07

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“Still up to this day, a lot of people meet here for the first time or have first dates here.

That helped.” Montilla couldn’t remember why the coffeehouse got rid of the site, though he said the posts were “dwindling” after a while.

You know, she said, “silly stuff like that.” A missed connection is fleeting, in terms of the encounter and the corresponding post’s seven-day shelf life. Seventeen years after its was established, the Craigslist section lives on.

The popularity of Missed Connections might have peaked somewhere between “You’ve Got Mail”-era chat rooms and the creation of dating apps, but it’s still common to find at least a dozen new posts on the D. “The post is your opportunity to be heard,” said Lin, who spoke on the condition that only her first name be used.

The 24-year-old Dupont Circle resident walked past a tall, bespectacled man outside a Juan Valdez cafe few weeks ago, and they exchanged glances.Missed connections in urban areas often involved public transportation, she said, while rural ones tended to be in supermarkets.The most common location in Washington was the Metro. A majority of posts — 59 percent, she said — were from men looking for women.“The idea of getting a second chance, however small it may be, is very powerful.” Sheer curiosity about the feature’s popularity inspired Brooklyn-based Dorothy Gambrell, a graphics editor at Bloomberg Businessweek, to do some digging a few years ago.

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She scanned through posts from all over the country, eventually creating a graphic for Psychology Today that depicted geographic patterns.“You’d rather be with the first person than the second, and there’s no way of knowing whether someone will get you without spending time face to face.” Missed connections, similarly, are based on a more personal level of attraction than just swiping right on a Tinder profile.It’s “baloney” to claim that online dating has undermined interpersonal relationships, says Rosenfeld, who considers the Craigslist posts to be a “direct analog for …She believes the anonymous quality of missed connections is part of what makes them so appealing. We tend to believe in “interpersonal magic,” such as love at first sight, says Stanford University sociology professor Michael Rosenfeld.