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Not only have we given Gumtree a fresh new look, we’ve made it easier for you to search our site. With all the attention we’re putting on improving how you find things in your neighbourhood, we’re not able to focus on bringing you the dedicated service you’ve told us you needed in the Friends & Dating categories.
For this reason, we will no longer be offering our own services in Friends & Dating from 5 January 2010.
Scott Rosenbaum, 30, spotted a gap in the market while working on a dating website and launched the strictly platonic website Rentafriend in New Jersey last year. "Male seeks female for platonic banter – 40 (London)" reads the headline in another post. "I'm a 24-year-old white female from West Yorkshire, looking to make to new friends within my favourite city… I like learning to cook, going to shows and concerts, and getting to know new people and forming new friendships.
"No one was offering friendship," says the marketing whiz. On the site, "friends" sign-up to offer themselves – from a few pounds per hour – to the lonely, bored or plain curious. "Looking to make new friends, nothing more," pleads a 26-year-old male. I have always loved London, ever since I was a little girl and would to love to make new friends in the area.
Consider your motives—are you merely attracted to him or her physically or even confusing your feelings as a caring friend with romantic feelings?
The web already caters for everything from S&M addicts desperately seeking a new master, to Orthodox Jews looking to find their bashert (destined love). "We have zero tolerance if a friend says they were solicited.
Now, despite – or, perhaps, because of – the proliferation of social networking websites, it is helping people make friends. There's no second chance." And he may be on to something. Craig's List, the phenomenally successful listings website, has a popular section called Strictly Platonic, in which users seek companions for everything from museum visits or shopping outings to coffee and conversation, echoing the growing popularity nationwide of salons, book groups and cultural forums. I enjoy writing, watching a good chick-flick film or reading a girlie novel…
This makes dating a friend seem like a no brainer but like Ross and Rachel on Friends things can get complicated.
How do you know if you should start dating friends?