Single-Use Identities on craigslist Missed Connections

For the last two year, I have collected the anonymous messages containing “single-use identities” on craigslist Missed Connections. During this time, I have worked on a number of themes related to subjectivity and intertextual production of the self, including:

  1. authorship
  2. regulation
  3. censorship

Publications : //

Brubaker, J. R. and Hayes, G. R. (2011, accepted). SELECT * FROM USER: Infrastructure and Socio-technical Representation. Proc CSCW 2011. Hangzhou, China. March 19–23, 2011. [Best Paper Nomination] [pdf]

Brubaker, J. R. (2009). I judged you at Starbucks: Confession and regulation of contextual selves on craigslist Missed Connections. In F. Dervin, & Y. Abbas (Eds.), Digital Technologies of the Self. Cambridge Scholars.

// This chapter is grounded in a critical theory perspective, and like the rest of the chapters in this collection, engages Foucault’s later work on technologies of the self.

Brubaker, J. R. (2009). I am an ID: Non/persisting our sociotechnical digital identities. Master’s thesis at Georgetown University.

// Chapter 4 specifically pulls from this craigslist data.

Conferences : //

Brubaker, J. R. (2009, March). Authoring the Single-Use Identity: Intertechnical production of the non-persistent subject on craigslist Missed Connections. Paper presented at American Comparative Literature Association 2009 Annual Meeting: “Global Languages, Local Cultures”, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA.

// Seminar on “Intertechnical Bodies” co-chaired with Megan McCabe and Theodora Danylevich.

Brubaker, J. R. (2008, April). I judged you at Starbucks – m4m (craigslist missed connections): digital communication and the regulation of real world contexts. Paper presented at quickanddirty IV, University of Maryland, College Park, MD.

Brubaker, J. R. (2008, March). craigslist Missed Connections: Social Regulation in the Non-Persistent Web. Paper presented at the annual Space, Place and the Imagination conference, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI.

Related Work : //

Censoring Identity: Anonymous Censorship of Online Identities in craigslist Missed Connections (December, 2008)

What types of identifying practices result in the highest rate of anonymous censorship? In this project, I examined peer censorship (via craigslist moderation or “flagging” system) to determine what identities are removed from the system. Quantitative analysis found that posts authored by men and/or sexual minorities (m4m and w4w) had the highest rates of censorship. Qualitative analysis suggests that censorship is organized around three variables: familiarity, appropriateness, and legibility.

craigslist :: (theoretical) missed connections (December, 2007)

Who responds to missed connections on craigslist? This piece examines responses that are publicly posted back into craigslist, and theorizes about the disciplinary and regulatory effect that these posts might have.

Craigslist Missed Connections: Anonymously ISO Experience (posted to the gnovis Journal blog)

This is the blog post that started it all. A taste:

“I’ve missed the connection with DC.”

It was a simple statement – concise, to the point and honest. It was posted anonymously on Craigslist Missed Connections, addressed to a city that, for this writer, made anonymity more than possible.