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Is "friend dating" really a thing? That sounds even more ridiculously contrived than "safe spaces".

Look up Bumble BFF. I know several people who have made friends on there and for whom it had a positive effect.

Looks like my comment was interpreted differently than intended -- if "friend dating" is a way to meet people you wouldn't otherwise have met, it sounds like an OK way to handle a super-busy schedule. Still treating the symptom rather than the cause, but okay.

I interpreted the term as a way to vet potential friends before becoming actual friends, to reduce the risk of having to deal with a somewhat incompatible person in an adult and non-structured manner.

Isn't this what meetup.com is about?

MeetUp seems to be mostly about offline user groups now. Mostly about tech - at least in my town.

Although a majority of groups are about tech, in most medium cities you can find meetups for hundreds of non-tech topics with enough people attending each week.

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