A photo is not a requirement to say, "Hello," but visual stimulation can help. I find it interesting how ( the internet) communication brings out the vanity in us all.
Online services provide that little extra boost to one's confidence. You know that bit of encouragement to correspond with individuals one otherwise could not approach (in public venues). For those individuals, and myself with such aspirations, I say," lets be realistic"... If one were not interested in environments outside of the internet, they would feel the same here on the internet. In other words, let's be truthful to ourselves.