Hi everyone! This is going to be part two of how to tell if someone online is real or not. Be sure to check out part one. There will be an annotation and a link to that video in the description. [Catfish (part 1)] In that video I discussed some warning signs and tips to finding out if you are talking with a catfish. And, how you can use Google and other sites to find and search for the person you are suspicious about. This video, however, will be an updated version of that. I will discuss a more recent incident I encountered as well as how to use Facebook’s Graph Search to potentially find the person you are suspicious about.
Besides the obvious of multiple profiles, fake pictures, avoiding meeting and making excuses, and other info that was discussed in part one, just who are catfish and how can you understand them? Essentially, they are often people who are not comfortable with themselves, such as how they look, how they may be perceived, so they manipulate their own image by having fake pictures of themselves, and/or false information about them. Some catfish may strictly manipulate their physical appearance because they fear judgement from others for how they look because they are not comfortable with their own appearance. While others may look like they do in the photos, but manipulate their information because they may not like who they are as a person. Or, it could be a combination of both. The possibilities and endless, so definitely be careful.
Now, I’ve spoken about my experience on an online dating site in a separate video, which there will be an annotation and a link in the description. [Dating Site Catastrophe] That event for me was certainly an interesting scenario since the person who I was talking with was who they were in the photos, yet the profile just had so many lies. But, I’m not here to judge. Obviously that person was, and maybe still is, dealing with something that is very difficult for them. So, I can forgive and forget that since I can move on from it and how it rendered any negative emotion in me. I can just wish for the best of this person, whoever they are, even if they are watching this.
But anyway, since being on YouTube and talking with a lot of people, I’ve run into a few people who are not who they say they are. There was one in particular that I would like to share that was very persistent. This person is no longer in contact with me but if you are watching this, I can hope that you can manage to figure things out and be the person you want to be without needing to manipulate and deceive other people to achieve your motives. But anyway, me and this person were talking for several months. It started as an attachment they had towards me that was persistent, demanding, and overwhelming. In other words, they were incredibly needy and would intentionally lie for sympathy so I could feel bad for them and enter into a relationship with them.
They would lie and it was easy for me to spot because of how they were seeking attention from me when I would deny the request or come back with something other then, “Ok, let’s go on a date. Let’s be in a relationship.” And, no matter how many times I would say that, they just wouldn’t listen. I kept saying things like, “We need to be friends first. But on top of that, I need to know who you are. I can’t just date you without knowing who you are.” We would have a brief conversation about something else and immediately it would be back to the relationship talk. But, there came a point where this person would really try and impress me with a bunch of lies. Not to mention the multiple profiles I have found of them which I think could’ve all been operated by the same person.
First this person said they were rich and famous because they were a fashion designer. I searched up their name and found nothing. However, I did find someone with the exact same name that was a fashion designer. Not anyone famous, but I saw their work and knew it wasn’t the person I was speaking with because the photos of the fashion designer was not the person I was speaking with. Sure enough, when I was talking with this alleged fashion designer, I asked to see some work and can you believe they sent me the work I found online from the person with the same name? There were other photos that were sent to me that I just did a quick Google search of and found them. It was someone who didn’t think I would take a second to just search up the images.
I replied back with something like, “Oh, I see you like these types of styles and designers. I’m still very interested in seeing some of your work?” Nothing…they didn’t reply to that. But, we did end up talking again about unrelated matters. This person knew that I knew that they were not who they said they were and didn’t want to address that. Yet, I kept talking with them because nothing was going to happen. I was just waiting for them to come clean and open up about who they really were, but they never did, and they stopped talking. So, if you are watching this, again I wish you the best and hope you can be honest with yourself since you are not a bad person. And, people need to know the real you and not a fake you.
Anyway, feel free to share your experiences. I will now talk about Facebook Graph Search and how it is amazingly awesome for stalking…err…I mean…finding information…yeah.
Facebook Graph Search
Facebook is a wonderful tool to utilize to find people. And if you are unsure of someone, Facebook can be very handy. Not only is it against Facebook’s terms to have multiple accounts, but hopefully in the future it’ll be easier to spot fake profiles. I stand by not having more than one personal profile because you can create lists or groups of friends to aggregate conversations and posts so other groups do not see it. So, if you want to share something with just your friends and not family, you can do that by easily creating organized lists to share content to only specific groups of people. That is an advantage I see of Google+ since it makes you organize people into specific groups first.
But anyway, Facebook Graph Search is an absolutely wonderful search system that you can use simple words and sentences to find what you are looking for. Be sure to check the documentation for further uses. But essentially, you can search up people, pictures, posts, events, places, anything you want really. Perhaps something like, “People near me that go to movie theaters.” Then it will show you people that live near your location and go to the movie theaters. You can search up places too so, “Movie theaters near me.” Or even better, “Movie theaters near me that my friends go to.” The possibilities are endless.
When searching up people though, it depends on their privacy settings. So, if you want to see a list of friends someone has, you would search for, “Friends of [this person].” Or, “[this person’s] friends.” But, if you are not friends with them and don’t have access to their friends list, like if their privacy settings are secure, you may not be able to find the info you are looking for. You could even search something crazy like, “My friends of friends of friends of friends that like candy.” Then it will show you people that are friends of your friends’ friends of friends that like candy. Again, the possibilities are endless so play around with it.
You can search for photos of a person and if they are tagged in their friends’ albums you may be able to find photos of them when you normally won’t be able to on their profiles. You will be able to find photos and posts they have commented on, liked, anything and everything. You may even soon be able to use the ‘not’ operator in your query when it is fully implemented. So something like, “My friends that like candy but not chocolate.” But remember, you can even use this to search yourself to find posts, photos, anything else you have liked, commented on, even photos you are tagged in.
Now before I begin this quick demonstration, you may not have access to all of what Graph Search has to offer. Depending on your country, location, and other factors, you may not have Graph Search at all or you may not be able to perform all types of searches. I cannot demonstrate all searches in this video since I am currently missing the ability to search for posts as it’s still being worked on. But, if and when you have that ability, you can search for those as well.
What I would like to see the future of Graph Search be is that you could search for images in the sense of how they look like someone. So a search like, “People that look like [this person.]” That way, if there is a Facebook profile you are suspicious about, you could search for this and find other profiles that use the same photos, or photos that look like that person, and ultimately uncover if the person you are talking with is real or not. But, that may be a long way down the road before we see that feature, but it would be nice to have if Facebook could detect that.
So in conclusion, discovering if a person you are speaking with online is real or not can be challenging. Using Facebook to search for the person can be useful if they are on Facebook, but it’s not guaranteed. Use your best judgement when communicating online since you may be in for disappointment if you set your hopes too high. I hope this video was informative and helpful. Thanks for watching!