Facebook’s a liar! A real-life chat is better

DID you know that 65% of men use social media to screen/stalk prospective dates? Because I would have thought that figure would have been much higher.

Let's face it ladies and gents, we've all done it.

We've all hopped onto Facebook or Twitter to find out more about that friend of a friend who caught our eye at one party or another, to find out more about them.

<<< Facebook and Twitter used to suss out prospective dates >>>

The theory is that we can find out a lot about a person by what they choose to post on their Facebook pages.

For example, we can pick up useful hints like their love of Brian Jonestown Massacre which we can then use in further conversations with them, even if our familiarity with the band falls entirely within the opening titles of Boardwalk Empire.

We can also look for potential red flags, such as angry diatribes about their exes and their desire to have 12 children/cats some day.

It's just a lot more effective in picking up conversation starters and looking for bright red "stay away" warnings, than more traditional methods such as actually talking to them.

But here's the rub, are we actually getting a true reflection of who the person actually is by scanning what they elect to put up on Facebook?

Remember, each great-looking photo on Facebook has probably been culled from a series of 10, so in fact a person only looks as good as they do in a photo one-tenth of the time at the most.

We've become curators of our own images, and the implications of that are truly disturbing.

To paraphrase the immortal Jenna Maroney: "Love is hiding your true self at all times, even while sleeping."

So are we simply setting ourselves up for a fall by trying to take all the mystery out of romance? After all, we're now in the process of setting up pre-conceptions before first impressions, and that can't possibly work out well.

So maybe next time strike up a conversation with somebody and find out about them the old-fashioned way.

With actual questions and listening, and what have you.

Topics:  dating facebook gladstone james mcgrath opinion social media

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