In February 2002, I was surfing the Internet late at night, as usual. I knew that I had to finish my thesis in two months but I felt bored by my academic work and reading. I hadn’t bothered developing a social life more sophisticated than the exchanges of pleasantries with casual acquaintances, so that kept me at home surfing online. I was browsing a USENET history newsgroup that I regularly participated in, looking for any unread discussion threads. In one thread, the discussion veered wildly from its original subject. As I paged down through the year-old comments, I came to one young man’s posting, in which he casually mentioned that he was looking for a boyfriend.