Let's first address the obvious: is it possible he just happened to start dating someone at the exact same time as we matched?
That's how fast the process movjhu,es these days. That's why I always advise people to respond to their messages and send messages in a timely fashion. From my experience, I've noticed that people are very quick to unmatch if they don't receive a response. The quickest was less than 24 hours.
Here's why I would have preferred he just ghosted me: because two days had gone by without hearing back from him. Mentally, I'd already moved on. Popping back up to explain why I hadn't heard from him only reminded me he'd never replied. We hadn't even met yet, so no big deal.
As for why he ghosted, that was something else I didn't need to know. It's like waiting online several hours for tickets for an event only to get the Sold Out message when it was your turn in the queue. If you got excited about that person, then a response like this is going to make you over-think and over-analyze things. What if I had suggested we meet sooner? What if I didn't wait a day to respond?
Even if you're not all that hyped about a particular Tinder or Bumble match, finding out they chose someone else still stings.
That's why I prefer people just ghost. Now, I'm not talking about someone you've gone out with a few times. That's a whole other topic. I'm talking about people you match with, exchange a couple days worth of messages and maybe even meet once or twice. Let me pretend you got busy or aren't ready to date or any of the other innocuous excuses we give people when we aren't interested in seeing someone again. Allow me the opportunity to "grieve the loss", so to speak, on my terms. Because, see, we all know those excuses are, well, excuses. We know more often than not they are lies. While some people understand and accept that lying is a part of dating, many others don't. The explanation sets off a chain reaction in many of our brains. Then it becomes about whether or not we believe them and why would they lie, etc. People say they want the truth, but do they? Do they really? I don't believe so. I think they only want their version of the truth.
While many might see ghosting as rude and cowardly, I think it's appropriate given the level of investment. Requiring someone you barely know let alone never met to pen you a Dear John or Jane text seems a little excessive to me. I think silence is an answer, it's just not being expressed verbally. Silence means "this will not be progressing any further." Unless you've been dating someone for a significant amount of time, the why is irrelevant. But not saying anything, they're not leaving themselves open for a debate or further discussion. They're also not opening themselves up to be insulted or barraged with venom.
In my opinion, ghosting is what's best for all involved. For the ghoster, it's the best short-term solution. For the ghostee, it's not until they have some distance do they realize that was the way to go.