A few months ago, I got into a pretty big fight with my boyfriend over Facebook stalking. Just to be clear, I’m not talking about some crazy cyber stalker stuff… I’m talking about some good old-fashioned FB stalking. You know what I mean: creeping on your BF’s ex’s profile, looking at every single picture your crush is tagged in (900 photos? Don’t mind if I do!) or just casually doing a Facebook background check on those chicks on keep writing on your boyfriend’s wall.
Here’s what happened: he caught me totally red-handed. I had been semi-stalking (okay, fine, full-on stalking) this girl my boyfriend had hooked up with before he met me, and I stupidly spilled that info on my own without meaning to. My BF was all like, “Why would you look at her page? You don’t even know her!” At first, I was super embarrassed, but then I was quickly like, “Whatever, everyone Facebook stalks a little bit!”
This, of course, resulted in an argument – my BF insisted that most people don’t spend their time Facebook stalking while I told him he was completely wrong and everyone does it. After a few hours, I almost had him convinced, but I could tell he still didn’t totally believe it. Well, now I’m going to get the last laugh because I finally – finally! – have proof that I’m right. Actually, the results of this study are even better than that.
New data about relationships and privacy from McAfee revealed some pretty interesting stats about social media stalking that actually really, really surprised me: apparently, men stalk online more than women do. IN YOUR FACE, BOYFRIEND!
This data says that 46 percent of men stalk their partner, their ex or their partner’s ex on Facebook or Twitter, while the percentage of women was only 37. Similarly, 57 percent of men admitted to logging into their partner’s social media or email account, while only 52 percent of women admitted to doing it also. Okay, so the percentages aren’t super different, but still – I honestly would have never thought that more men would admit to doing that stuff more than women.
Is that just me? For some reason, I’ve always felt like ladies Facebook stalk more than dudes. Maybe that’s because I’m so used to girls talking about it openly and without much shame – my girlfriends readily swap stalking stories and I’ve even discussed it with girls I barely know. At least five of my friends have forced me to friend random crushes/girls/exes just so they can log onto my account and check out their profiles. Meanwhile, I only had a guy ask me to do that once – it was my cousin and when he asked, you would have thought we had a top secret government operation going on.
So maybe guys are just a little bit more quiet about their stalking than girls are – or maybe that’s just where I’m from? I just rarely hear dudes talking about it. In fact, most of the time I hear them making fun of girls for doing it, calling them pathetic and crazy. Hmm… maybe they’re just feeling a little insecure.
The bottom line? Facebook stalking is a thing that a lot of us do even though we know we shouldn’t do it and we might as well accept it instead of calling each other crazy. I’m not saying everyone FB stalks. In fact, if you don’t, I’m jealous. That stuff can get obsessive and annoying quickly. I’m also not saying that there isn’t a line you shouldn’t cross – there is. In my opinion, a little bit of casual stalking is fine. It’s once you start spending hours of your time poring over profiles of people you don’t know that you have an issue. I’m just trying to say that maybe we shouldn’t make each other feel so bad about it. Hey, the info is there in front of you, basically asking to be looked at (that’s what you’re doing when you make an online profile of any kind). Can you really blame us?
Were you surprised that men stalk more than women? Do you stalk on social media sites? Have you ever gotten caught? Tell me in the comments.