"We both scraped the bottom of the barrel, didn't we?" This is what my current boyfriend said to me about 2 months into our relationship. We had both tried Yahoo Personals, and other ways to meet people, but it just didn't work for either of us.
I had used Craigslists many times. I found two apartments that way and a job. Sure I had perused the other sections of Craigslist and often wondered if meeting someone that way was feasible.
Finally I decided what the hell. My ad was no more that 3 sentence long and the responses received were surprisingly a lot. I hadn't even put my picture up. Based on some of the responses received, that probably would have been a bad a idea. I got responses from NSA, to friend with benefits, to desperate menwho just wanted a girl friend. But no matter what, I used my judgement in interacting with these people. If I did decided to meet them, it was definitely always in public and someone always knew where I would be. A few times I dragged a few friends with me.
I was about to give up with the thought that the personals section of Craigslist was filled with horny guys, or just people wanting one nights stands until I got a very normal, thoughtful e-mail. I communicated with this person for a month before meeting and I two and half years later we are happily together and just about on our way to 'happily ever after"
However this being said... I was always caution about meeting people on-line and used my best judgement. Even though it is an on-line environment, the same precautions should be taken as if you were to meet someone in a bar, club or other real life social setting. And at the same time those posting services should take the same precautions.
Craigslist should not be completely at fault what happens with it's users, but it should take some the accountability for the content it allows to be posted.
Has Yahoo! Personals, eHarmony and other social websites other than MySpace, experienced the same things as Craigslist in the recent media events and if so, what happened to them.