‘Missed connections’ pages are sweet but also kind of creepy

Written By Chandni Shah, Opinions Editor

While scrolling through social media and visiting the many pages and accounts connected to our university, I came across a handle on Instagram called “ppu.missed.connections” with the name “Strangers 2 Lovers.” It has almost 800 followers and has made 28 posts as of when this was written. I was very intrigued by this discovery and began to look at what exactly this account was posting.

The missed connections page offers a submission box where you can describe a person or encounter and ask who they are or tell how you feel about them. At first glance, this is a seemingly great idea, as the people writing remain anonymous as well as the source they are submitting to.

Some of the content is sweet. For example, one person complimented another on their hair and outfit and asked if they could be friends. However, some of the posts are just straight-up creepy, such as one claiming to have witnessed a breakup in Village Park and asked one of the people if they could break their heart, too.

Point Park is not the only school to have a “missed connections” account. The University of Pittsburgh also has a similar account that the unknown owner of the PPU equivalent even credits for the idea.

On Pitt’s page, the owner details that they do not accept or post submissions of hateful commentary and accepts feedback from their followers on how to make the page a safe and friendly environment. In my opinion, the anonymous author behind that page is handling the account effectively, and I commend them for their admirable strive to connect people on campus.

The issues with some of these posts on both the Point Park and Pitt accounts is that some of them seem very stalker-esque. Students are staring at others, studying and detailing whoever they are writing about. This sounds like a Caroline Kepnes “You” situation, but whatever floats your boat, I guess. In between these creepy posts are ones about asking neighbors to turn their music up because they like the song that’s being played, asking where someone got their outfit, or asking people to be friends because they have a good vibe.

I do wish there was a way to find out if anyone ever got together or became friends after meeting through the account, but I guess that’s the point of anonymity. Some of the stories really dragged me in, and I wanted to know what would happen next.

While looking through the comments on the missed connection pages, a lot of people have tagged the person that the posts are about, so it actually could be successful. In some cases, the person in question is flattered that someone noticed and thought about them, enough so to submit a post to try and reach them. Others find it a bit strange and wish that the anonymous source would’ve just talked to them in person (or not at all).

Missed connection accounts are anonymous spaces where you can attempt to create new friendships and relationships, but can also be a little creepy and off-putting. Just stay safe out there, kids.