Difference between Craigslist Personals and Online Dating Sites

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online dating sites vs craigslist personals

Not too long ago, Craigslist was among the biggest and most popular websites in the world of the internet. Many Gen X-ers can still recall those days of scrolling through the mysterious archives of Craigslist, whether it is to look for some secondhand furniture pieces or read about sweet, missed connections.

However, one of the biggest features of the site once upon a time was none other than the Personals section. This is where men seeking women, women seeking women, or men seeking men can expect to find and meet the potential love of their lives.

This is why when Craigslist Personals was closed down, this also signified the end of the era. But what makes Craigslist Personals different from other online dating sites then? To pay tribute to the relic of the internet’s bygone days, let us take a trip down memory lane and learn more about Craigslist Personals.

What is Craigslist?

The Craigslist platform lets you view or post classified ads that can include job postings, items for sale, real estate, gigs, services, local events, and so much more. This site is actually reminiscent of the classified ads section in newspapers. The only difference is that people can easily and quickly look for the specific ads that interest them. Craigslist is similar to other sites such as Doublelist, Gumtree, and Locanto.

Established during the mid-90s, the site was among the first websites that were especially dedicated to classified ads. During the peak of its popularity, the site was able to attract millions of visitors on a monthly basis, earning millions of dollars in review per year.

Craigslist enjoyed such notable popularity that it even became a staple in both the internet and American culture. There are plenty of TV shows, films, and video games that featured the site including Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates, Grand Theft Auto IV, and New Girl.

Even though Craigslist is an American website, the service managed to expand to more than 70 countries all over the world. In fact, there are also specific subsites for different cities in Australia including Adelaide, Melbourne, and Sydney.,

What is Craigslist Personals?

The Personals was among the most popular sections of the Craigslist platform. This was the part where you can look for personal ads posted by people who are searching for friendship, dates, and even casual sex.

This was specifically famous and in demand among the LGBTQ+ community members. During that time, this was among the only spaces where lesbian and gay people are given the chance to make connections, particularly in countries that are somewhat more conservative.

The Craigslist platform was doing all of these during the era when there were plenty of stigmas associated with casual hookups and online dating, making them the real pioneer in this industry. If you happen to be one of those people who love to swipe on Tinder or you often slide into someone’s Grindr DMs, Craigslist is the one you should be thanking for it.

Why is Craigslist Personals Shut Down?

The sad news for many thirsty and lovesick adults from different parts of the globe, Craigslist Personals was officially shut down back in 2018 even if the other sections of Craigslist remain up and running to this day. The Personals section was discontinued in response to the SESTA/FOSTA, which were the laws that were passed in the US to combat sex trafficking.

Based on the law, it is allowed for the government to impose both civil and criminal liabilities on all websites that provide a platform for sex trafficking and prostitution. Craigslist once had an erotic or adult services section wherein erotic massage therapists, escorts, as well as other kinds of sex workers, can advertise their services. However, this original section was shut down back in 2010 and as a result, all of its activities were migrated to the personals section.

After FOSTA was passed, the Craigslist platform decided to just discontinue their personals section to ensure that the other parts of the website won’t be closed down as well. What is interesting here is that there were plenty of pushbacks from the community of sex workers. According to them, shutting down websites such as Craigslist robbed them of their chance to screen clients, search for work, and engage in their sex-related jobs securely and safely.

Rather than searching for clients online right within the safety and comfort of their homes, most sex workers were left with no choice but to go to the streets in places that expose them to more risks and dangers. Meanwhile, the rest of the similar sites that remain only end up exploiting the desperation of these sex workers by charging them huge amounts just to post their ads. This was very much different from the low-cost services of Craigslist in the past.

Online Dating Sites are Different

The good news is that even if Craigslist Personals was now long gone, there are still a lot of online dating sites that you can use to your advantage. The difference between these sites from the Personals section of Craigslist is quite easy to see.

Unlike Personals that seemed to focus mainly on casual hookups and sexual encounters, online dating sites are more into helping their members find new friends, potential dates, or even life partners.

There is more to online dating sites than just encounters and hookups. The goal of these platforms is to ensure that members have an enjoyable experience throughout their use of the site. The focus is not only on sex alone. After all, there is more to dating than just a physical connection.

At the end of the day, what matters the most is to find that one person that you can connect with on a much deeper level that goes beyond the skin.

With the help of the best online dating sites, you can embark on a fun, safe, and enjoyable dating journey that you will remember for the rest of your life.

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