Honestly, I don’t even know how to begin this, but I will say that after watching a Catfish: The TV Show marathon via OnDemand, I now realize the world is filled with gullible people. Not that I didn’t realize this before, but to have the gullible types blatantly thrown in your face, episode after episode is not only hilarious, but sad. This past week, the world came to realize that “Catfishing” is really a ‘thing,’ when news surfaced about Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o’s incident he allegedly had no involvement in. But what people fail to realize, even before the documentary and MTV show, duping people over the internet has been a thing, well since, the internet. And I’m quite sure, it was even going on when old school personal ads in the newspapers were popular.
In a recent Men’s Health article, Julie Spira, an online dating expert and author of The Perils of Cyber-Dating, Spira says there are thousands of men out there who have been hoodwinked by bogus Internet relationships.
“The World Wide Web is a lot like the wild wild west,” she says. “Some people may by trying to get back at someone, or playing a prank. Or someone who is unpopular may just want to reinvent him or herself.”
Although some of the blame can be pointed at the person doing the catfishing, I place the majority of the blame with the person on the receiving end. With the access to information nowadays, there’s no excuse for anyone to fall victim to catfishing.
A few people on the Catfish series, lived within close proximity to the person they were corresponding with, but why would it take 2 years to meet up? Then with technology like Skype, and other forms of video chat, you’re meaning to tell me, you find it odd that the person never wants to utilize any of those? But wait, it gets better. So you actually think you’re corresponding with a former Miss Teen USA, also? Umm. Ok.
Yeah, I get it. Some people are lonely and maybe a little gullible. But there’s no excuse in doing your own due diligence when it comes to figuring out if you’re dealing with a fake.
- If a person doesn’t want to meet you in person, they’re probably a fake.
- If a person refuses to Skype with you, they’re probably a fake.
- If a person sends you photos, that you think are “too good to be true”, run it through Google’s image search, it’s pretty accurate in finding copies of it online.
The internet gives us tools to use to figure out the fakes. It shouldn’t take a reality TV show to do that. But then again, there are some people that are so gullible, they probably shouldn’t be allowed within 2 feet of the internet, anyways.
Check out Huffington Post’s recap from last night’s confusing but highly intriguing episode of MTV’s Catfish: The TV Show, featuring a bi-sexual, lesbian, transgender, gay love hoax between Rod & Ebony: