At What Point is it Creepy?
So it’s pretty obvious that Facebook has infiltrated our lives and that some people (most?) have searched for someone that they didn’t really know, in hopes of learning more about them (read: seeing more pictures). Part of me thinks that it’s pretty creepy to do so, but are there some situations under which it’s not THAT creepy? Let’s take a look.
1. You meet someone online and get their name or email address
Is it creepy to THEN go to Facebook and do a search to see if they’re on there? You’ve already been trusted with a piece of information about them, and if it’s their email address then they clearly hope to chat with you some more. Some might say it’s a good precautionary measure. For example, you might have some mutual friends (or, maybe common acquaintances that aren’t so “friendly”) that could make the connection awkward. Or, you might find out that they’re really pretty terrible. And you won’t have invested all kinds of time getting to know them, to discover that.
2. You meet someone at a party and find them via name or a friend
If you attend a social gathering of some kind (maybe speed dating?) and you meet someone that you take a liking to. Is it a little creepy to go to Facebook and find them (whether via the friend you had in common or by their name) and check out their profile, assuming it’s not private? I guess this depends on whether they seemed to like you as well, or if they even spent much time talking to you. If someone whom you had hardly spoken to somehow contacted you after checking you out on Facebook, might you find it odd? Or flattering, if you found that person attractive? Be honest with yourself; you’d probably find it creepier if someone un-attractive (to you, at least) did it.
3. You have a job that has you taking names and email addresses
Let’s say you work somewhere that involves taking peoples’ names and/or email addresses, and you serve someone that you think you might get along with. It’s always tricky in this case because what you perceive to be a connection could simply be that person’s politeness. Nonetheless, is this wrong in ALL situations? Because you got the information while at work? It probably depends on whether or not that person would be happy that you did it. Regardless, if we can’t depend on bars, grocery stores, or the gym is it so wrong to use work to meet people? It probably is if you’re using information you shouldn’t be, for the purpose of meeting people. I in no way recommend or condone this one. Tread carefully.
4. You search Facebook for city, interests, etc and find people you’re interested in
What if you were to use Facebook LIKE an online dating site. You use the search function to see if anyone has the same interests as you do, or the same favourite bands/movies and upon doing so you find someone you’re interested in. You click on the picture and lo and behold you have tons in common. Since this person wasn’t asking to be evaluated in a dating context, is this creepy? Again, it depends how the person reacts to your message. Some would be super freaked out and others might be very flattered and run with it, to see where it goes. And there’s no way to know which that person will be, unfortunately. Best to check yourself, lest you wreck yourself.
Well, those are just a few examples and I’m sure there are many more. I just can’t help but wonder how many people get Facebook crept in the run of a day, but also how much time and trouble that has saved us. After all, you can tell more about a person by looking at their Facebook than by going on numerous dates. Should be called Datebook. I already checked – Datebook.com belongs to a publisher of datebooks. Nice try, though.