Monday, May 30, 2011

Like LikeALittle a little too much?

The opposite sex has a constant presence in the mind of a typical college student. Sitting at Green Library entirely absorbed in a 10 page paper, math 51 problem set, or whatever intellectual undertaking that should demand 100% of your attention at that time, can be a window of opportunity to scope out an attractive interest. So what should you do when someone does catch your eye? Go to Obviously.

Of course, the possibility that this person will actually go onto at that exact moment, see your post, recognize it’s him or her, make eye contact with you and subsequently initiate a whirlwind romance is so likely that posting will not be completely useless.
The founders themselves poke fun at the nature of the website, acknowledging that it most likely won’t serve its purpose as a “flirting-facilitator platform”, as coined by one of site’s creator Evan Reas. They offer the alternative option of carrying around a picture of a puppy to facilitate flirting if their site is ineffective.

The site “was created all in good fun”, but what accounts for its popularity? LikeALittle has now expanded to over 50 college campuses and continues to branch out. Perhaps the anonymity justifies the allure, as users are given a random fruit name each time they post or comment on another post. The site also has the added bonus of an extremely positive online environment. It has become common for other users to encourage a poster to “go for it” or “TALK TO HER”. It’s possible that users are hoping for a sense of community in their hesitant moments when they fail to actually make a move.
It has also transformed into a forum of sorts, where users fell comfortable expressing their concerns and insecurities about approaching relationships. One user comments “Why are you waiting for him to ask? I don’t understand this societal double standard” while another later replies “I agree with pumpkin, but men are totally cryptic, too! Everybody’s the same level of confused.” These discussions allow for a collective confession of a universal vulnerability.
LikeALittle has also taken a turn towards arbitrary. People can now post pictures, most of which of are completely random things, like rainbows or entire albums from a charity event. While the incentives to post and expectations of what will result are specific to each user, LikeALittle creates the option of acting, without any real action. “Is there someone special around you?” Then just click “Boom!”.