In the wake of increasing popularity among anonymous student-run accounts, UCI Missed Connections (@ucimissedconnections) has gained considerable attention with over 1,935 followers on Instagram as of Dec. 20.
Hundreds of students have used the Google form linked in the account’s description to submit a confession, whether it be expressing interest in an attractive stranger they saw in Brandywine, one of two campus dining halls or enlisting people in the comments to help track down their campus crush.
The sole anonymous user who runs the Instagram page created the account back in Oct. 26.
“One of my friends would send me posts from her school’s missed connections account and I realized that our school didn’t have one. I made it pretty spontaneously … and loved the idea that UCI students could connect with one another; more opportunities to form new relationships,” the account owner wrote in an interview on Instagram with the New University.
To submit a confession, students type their missed connection into a textbox and check a box giving UCI Missed Connections permission to post the confession anonymously on Instagram. Students’ emails are hidden in their submissions and responses to help ensure anonymity.
A typical post by UCI Missed Connections has a solid, colorful background with the confession layered on top, paired with humorous captions or a question prompt to engage followers. Many followers often comment on the captions more than the confession itself with many comments consisting of “felt the caption” and “lmaoo pls who posts these the captions are so good.”
One early submission is about a missed connection on the bus, assumingly the Anteater Express, posted on Oct. 27.
“To the red-head girl who I met on the bus going to Arroyo Vista like [three] weeks ago, I think about you often. You were so pretty and I wish I asked for your number <3,” the post reads.
According to the account owner, no official connections have come out of UCI Missed Connections as of yet, but meaningful connections are being made in different ways.
“I do see people tagging their friends in the comments and … my favorite thing is seeing the interactions in the comment sections, so I basically count those as connections,” the account owner said.
Not all posts are romantic missed connections. Some posts are noise complaints for certain student housing areas, searches for people with similar music tastes and more. A recent submission posted on Nov. 23, for example, is about someone’s negative experience at Brandywine.
“To whoever stole my dinner waffles at [B]randywine, I hope you drop your plates on someone next time you go,” the post reads.
The account owner eventually wants to increase the number of people running the page to help sort through and post submissions more efficiently.
“On average, I’ll get about 25 to 30 submissions [per day], but it depends on the day because on the weekends the number of submissions will go up a little bit more and it eventually adds up,” they said. “Currently, I have over 300 submissions, which is why [I’m] looking to get someone else to help me run this account.”
As for the mystery of who is running the account, the account owner mentioned the possibility of a face reveal during their senior year or after their graduation. Until then, the owner will remain anonymous for the time being.
“I wouldn’t consider myself a shy person, but I like being able to post, write captions and interact with people while staying anonymous. Plus, I feel like this account should focus more on the actual submissions rather than who runs it,” the account owner said.
Yuika Yoshida is a Campus News Intern for the fall 2021 quarter. She can be reached at email@example.com.