New social network lands at Dal

Likealittle.com sweeping into universities across the continent

Likealittle.com lets students anonymously post comments to missed connections on campus. (Photo: Geoff Bird)

A new social networking site appeared on Dalhousie University's campus last week that's looking to play matchmaker for lust-filled students.

"At Killam elevators: Male, brunette. Wearing diesel jeans and white hat. We made eye contact. It was magical. Can I share your jeans with you?" says one anonymous post.

That's just a taste of what's on Likealittle.com, a new site where university students can anonymously post love letters to missed connections on university campuses. It's a self-described "flirting facilitator platform."

Missed connections are anything new. Alternative newspapers have long had columns filled with forlorn letters from those who feel that eye locking with a passing stranger underlies a deeper, unspoken connection.

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Dalhousie student Emily Hastings James says she loves to procrastinate on the site. (Photo: Ezra Black)

Craigslist has had a missed connections page since 2000, but Likealittle is the first site that's dedicated to this phenomenon.

Likealittle chapters are popping up across the continent since the site was launched a few moths ago. There are already five schools in Nova Scotia that have their own page on the site.

A group of friends launched the Dalhousie University chapter last week and they say the site is already getting thousands of posts every day.

"It's really just a fun environment," says Michael Nimitz, one of the students behind the site. "You go on, say something flirty and see if you can get someone's attention."

Students who leave comments on the site must include their location on campus. Within each conversation thread, a user is given an anonymous handle. If that user enters into a different conversation, they're given a new, random handle.

And as long as the page is left open on your browser, there's the option of sending a private message to an admirer, which could lead to something more.

A new kind of network

"It is interesting," says Ivor Tossell, a tech columnist with The Globe and Mail. "Instead of following people, you're following locations."

He says Facebook and Twitter are identity-based and Likealittle fills a niche left out by those sites.

Likealittle was created by Stanford University student Evan Reas.

He set up the site on a franchise model. It's up to students to bring the Likealittle to their schools. They independently monitor and moderate posts. Their names are featured on the page as contacts.

Nimitz and his friends say they don't make any money for their administration of Dalhousie's site. They're doing it because Likealittle, "could be the next big website."

"It's a very clever model," says Tossell.

Nimitz says Likealittle owes part of its success at Dalhousie to good timing.

"It's exam time and people are looking for a distraction."

Dalhousie student Emily Hastings James says within a day of discovering Likealittle she had already wasted over an hour of study time browsing the site.

"I love procrastinating," she says.

But has the site actually set up any romantic liaisons?

"I haven't heard of any yet," says Nimitz.

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