This is a section of the Craigslist website that was founded by Craig Newmark and was designed for the placement of personal messages to individuals, or advertisements of a private nature.
The platform has been around since 1995 as an email distribution list, and this was way before the stigma associated with online dating had caused a decrease in its usage.
The personals section was popular, and it provided opportunities for dates and also facilitated sexual encounters. It was considered useful for same-sex relationship seekers, due to its open nature and difficulty in discovering each other’s partners.
In 2005, this site was considered as the chief facilitator of most sexual encounters between gay partners in the San Francisco area – on the Craigslist’s Men seeking men section.
This development, however, caused the Francisco Public Health Department officials to put more pressure on the site, and it led them to create a link to the San Francisco City Clinic and STD forums.
Sections that were included
The categories of the sections you would find on the site included;
Men seeking men.
Women seeking men.
Rants and raves
Women seeking women. Etc.
This service was around for a while as most user’s identities were hidden because of the sites safety and security settings.
Adult services controversy
The Craigslist Personals was known as “erotic services,” and due to the misuse of the platform by most of its users which promoted negative influences on the society through their advertisements sections, there was an outcry by the stakeholders who projected against the website.
The outcry caused the issuance of a disclaimer in 2002, as to the category of users and some of the services offered on the site.
In 2009, Craigslist had to close its erotic services, and they replaced this with an adult’s services section. The decision was reached as a result of allegations of the United States suggesting that the erotic service promoted prostitution, and due to the criticisms and complaints from the attorney general that some of the sections advertised facilitated child sex trafficking and prostitution, they had no choice but to close it down.
Why Craigslist personal was shut down
The passage of the Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act (FOSTA) bill forced craigslist to cease offering their personals section to US domains. The company felt that taking any risks in not closing down would jeopardize the other services available on its platform.
The law holds them culpable as a tool that facilitates prostitution and sex trafficking as its personal ads section allowed users to promote these activities with sex workers being dominant in this category.
In order to avoid contravening the law and being sued by victims from the use of the site, the personals section was discontinued in March of 2018. This was a smart move to protect their other services.
The removal of Craigslist personals attracted a great condemnation from users who saw the site as having plenty of positives such as serving a platform for users to meet life partners and build relationships.
Best Replacements and alternatives to the Craigslist Personals
The exit of this popular dating/personals section of craigslist left an enormous vacuum where millions of users continued to seek for alternatives to fill the void. Luckily, some other sites sprung up to meet the yearnings of the Craigslist personals subscribers, and the new online community that was seeking dating/personal sites.
This site was founded in March 2018, and so far recorded statistics state that it has over 550,000 search results and more than 11 million monthly visits. Members have access to a list of their personal adverts and can assess the listing of other members on the platform.
Doublelist is a new online personal website that has come to stay and offers a wide variety of service options. It is an excellent replacement for Craigslist personals; it provides members with an avenue to satisfy their sexual needs. Unlike other sites, you require to sign up before browsing through the listings, and the website has a beautiful layout.
Its verification process requires that all new users verify their emails and phone numbers as an extra security check so you can meet the FOSTA SESTA law that led to Craigslist Personals shutdown. The site also keeps track of everyone who posts and can ban sex traffickers from posting again.
It also prevents fake posts. You can select what you want from the following options;
This is perhaps the most significant Craigslist Personals replacement in 2019. It is a search-mobile app that is location-based, and it allows its users to swipe left or right, for dislike or like respectively.
You can also use the chat if the personal matches and wants to connect with you. It is mostly used as a dating app, and it displays information based on the short bio that is entered by each user. The users can connect using their linked Instagram accounts as well.
Happn is a simple location-based social searching mobile app, which like most other apps in this category allows users to like or dislike the other members based on their personal preferences. It also allows you the opportunity to chat with the parties if you like each other.
This is actually the ideal representation of a modern-day LGBTQ lifestyle as it continues to expand onto newer platforms. From social issues to original content, Grindr continues to create new and innovative features in a bid to make it more meaningful and impactful to the society at large.
OkCupid is super common and pretty old. It was launched in 2004 as an online dating and social networking site. It is based in the US and mostly abbreviated simply as OKC. It supports a wide range of modes of communication which includes emails, and instant messaging, and it is absolutely free.
The site has been continuously updated to include a bevy of nontraditional gender options such as asexual, pansexual, genderfluid, transsexual and even sapiosexual.
This has increased inclusiveness on the website for most users. OkCupid has the “OK trends blog,” which users can follow.
This is an online dating site that has over 20 language options and is used by people in over 80 countries. After its launch in 2007, it grew rapidly and now has over 27 million users. Zoosk has an IOS and Android app, plus a desktop chat client.
People who are looking for friends or dates have access to a wide variety of options on who to meet.
Three sisters created this app, CoffeeMeetsBagel was launched in 2012 and has become one of the most popular dating apps around. Its unique feature of the CMB is that each user has a limit to the number of profiles they can interact with each day.
It also offers a special ice-breaker on information for searches. CMB also helps users to identify potential matches by looking at their Facebook accounts.
The major advantage of the apps is that it doesn’t allow users to search other profiles which means that its privacy is at its best.
One problem you will encounter if you are used to dating apps is the limitation in the number of connections. It basically means that you can have only a few dates.
This app allows you to get in touch with individuals who are around your geographical location. Like other dating apps, you can set up meetings and hang out with them and connect with them. Prospective users usually register through Facebook, or they can log in directly to the app and sign up.
The main advantage of this app is that it is free for regular users and even has some free games for users to play. These games are used to increase the popularity of the app.
This site was founded in 2006, and it is a website with a dating-focused function. Due to its availability in 47 different languages, it has been regarded as the most widely used dating service in the world. Badoo.com is available to both IOS and Android users, and their Web apps make it very easy to use.
It has a service called the premium model, which allows users to access its core apps without a subscription.
Its significant advantages are that this app has a spam filtration technique which ensures a reduced spam content on the site — a menace which affects almost all online dating sites.
This is like most other dating and social networking apps. It is location-based, which facilitates communication between partners who indicate a certain level of interest in one another. In heterosexual matches, each female user can make the first contact with a matched male user, while in same-sex matches, both parties have equal opportunities to send messages to each other first.
The main advantage of this site is the fact that women initiate the first contact, which means there is no fear of overwhelming conversations from men.
For men, however, it can be quite frustrating when you find a woman you like but cannot send them a like request as these must originate from the women first.
This is another great alternative to Craigslist Personals. It is the fourth most visited website in the world behind Facebook, Google, and YouTube. Reddit has all of its contents on the site such as memes, world news, sections dedicated to cities and countries, etc. There are no restrictions on Reddit.
Subs such as (r/r4r, r/dirtyr4r) are made for people looking for casual hookups. They do not have a full list of the sub-Reddits, but you can see a sidebar of the subs mentioned above on the site. If you want to find additional subreddits, you can do a quick search with your city.
This is a very strict site when it comes to restrictions, and mods can quickly ban you if you post inappropriate things. It is recommended that you first read all of the sidebar rules before posting anything in order not to get yourself a banning.
This is quite similar to Craigslist, but it is a Canadian based website. If you are in Canada, this is your best option. You can find pretty much everything on the site, such as graphic designers, plumbers, etc. You can also post ads on the site.
If you are looking for friends or someone to talk to, the Kijiji community section has got you covered. All you have to do is select your city on Kijiji and look for the community section where there shall be other sub-sections such as “friendship,” “missed connections” and “long-lost relationships” to choose from.
Remember to read the fine print for rules and regulations of using the site.
Looking for love has never been so easy. If however you had been used to the Craigslist Personals, then I have given you a good list of some of the best alternatives to the website that you can still use to find love or someone to speak with.
Remember to follow the guidelines and rules of online dating which includes ensuring that you meet the person in a public place, do not give out your personal information such as your bank account details and NEVER ever send anyone money that you meet online until you know each other well.
Be extra careful as there are many cons out there who are out to frustrate your efforts, but there are many people who met online, so, it is worth a try.