Feb. 16, 2012— -- Chad Zanca was devastated when his girlfriend of six months just vanished from sight while visiting him for a vacation in Costa Rica.
"She straight up gave me the cold shoulder. It was pretty brutal," said Zanca, a 25-year-old from Denver who works in strategic sales for Agility, a disaster-recovery service.
"When we came back to the States, we did our own thing for a few days," he said. "I called her and she didn't want to hang out with me. It was real cold, no explanation at all."
Zanca is happily playing the field today, but he'd still like to know what went wrong.
Singles like Zanca can now get the feedback on a free website, WotWentWrong, which was launched this year. They say it can give jilted lovers closure, and new insight into their dating missteps for future romances.
Site users can send a customized and secure feedback request to that date who never called back. The ex can reply by selecting various reasons for the silent treatment. There is room for either party to add additional text or questions.
To encourage a response, the site provides survey ratings on the long-lost ex or questions about attractiveness, kissing skills and dress. The emphasis is on "being nice," according to site developers.
Zanca said the idea is appealing and so did his co-worker, 25-year-old Lizzy Holmgren. "I would totally want to know why someone was not interested in me," she said.
The site will aggregate its statistics in March so users can see the top breakup reasons and other dating trivia.
"WotWentWrong is the breakup app for couples who never really broke up," founder Audrey Melnik of Melbourne, Australia, said. "Instead, someone just faded away, and the lack of explanation makes it difficult for the other party to move on. We're providing a socially acceptable way to tie up the loose ends, learn from what happened and improve your dating Zen for the next relationship, no stalking required."
Melnik, 35, and a former IT consultant from Melbourne based the site on her experience with bad breakups.
"A year ago, I went out with a guy; we had reconnected through Facebook," she said. "At first, I wasn't sure if I wanted a friendship or a hang-out thing. He was the pursuer. We went for drinks and it turned into dinner and then we went to his place and had a goodnight kiss. He walked me to my car and I never heard from him again."
She said now singles have an easy way to find out, rather than just kvetching with their friends. The site targets both men and women in the 18-to-45 age group.
Users can select from different templates and styles of communication -- "philosophical, sincere or cool" -- and customize them to individual needs. They get a feedback report when an ex responds.
About 25 percent of the requests have been answered so far, Melnik said. "We try to make it not to appear like a stalker or too clingy," she said.
So far, the site has drawn about 50,000 unique visitors and sent out 500 feedback requests. Half of its users live in the United States.
One, John Blalock of Auburn, Ala., stumbled across WotWentWrong while navigating the dating scene with a church singles group after his divorce. The 51-year-old IT specialist wasn't having much luck.
"It had been a long time since I had been in the dating world," he said.
Thinking it was a "novel concept," Blalock sent out requests to three former dates, all of whom had blown him off.