You’ve seen the movies, the MTV reality television series, and the Dateline episodes, and the story is tried and true. A guy meets a girl on the internet who is beautiful, smart, articulate, and WAY too good to be true.
Throughout the course of an hour and twenty minutes, (or shorter if you’re watching it on TV) the guy starts to realize that this girl is not what she seems. Best case scenario, she’s just shy and insecure, using her friend’s pictures to talk to someone she perceives to be out of her league. Worst case scenario, she’s a bored 300-pound man who has mayhem on his mind. Or a weird fetish, and no one wants to have that forced onto them.
You know exactly what I’m talking about. Whether or not catfishing has directly influenced your life, you can’t deny that it has become a phenomenon, thanks to the rise of social media and the almighty internet.
Our fellow clickbait friends at Buzzfeed compiled a list of some of the weird and wild stories their community had to offer, seen here in its entirety. The following is based on a true story:
It was a dark and stormy night. Not really, I just wanted to make sure you were sucked in. Here you go:
The world of modeling is cutthroat and cruel at its best, (at least that’s what we learned from watching The Neon Demon) and downright dangerous at its worst. One day, our beautiful protagonist (let’s call her Tara) gets a message from another model named Hannah, who had some questions about the ins and outs of the industry.
Tara, happy to oblige, becomes friends with Hannah, who seems like a real chill girl. As most relationships are wont to do in modeling, Tara and Hannah decided to go ahead and book a lingerie photoshoot together.
When Tara arrived at the shoot, she instantly knew something was wrong. She waited for a while, but Hannah was nowhere to be seen and the photographer, Mario, was pushing her to hurry, as he had more appointments to fill that day.
Stinging and upset, Tara decided to go ahead and do the shoot herself. After the shoot ended, she tried desperately to message Hannah, but Hannah was never to be heard from again.
A little bit betrayed, but holding her head high like the goddess she is, Tara continued to do her modeling work, even colliding with Mario a couple more times.
One year later, Tara is on her way to an appointment and decides to pick up a newspaper with her coffee, only to find Mario’s face plastered all over the cover. She tore through the pages anxiously, and when she got to his article, her stomach dropped.
Mario was facing a very long time in jail, not only for impersonating a girl on the internet (which a good majority of us are probably guilty of) but for using his Hannah persona to coerce young girls into nude photoshoots.
Tara was lucky nothing bad happened to her, but a lot of people aren’t that lucky. The digital age makes it harder and harder to know who is real and who isn’t. Behind the screen, you can be anyone.
There are dozens of other stories available, each one more bizarre and frightening than the next, and each one echoing the words our mothers used to tell us when we were young: “Don’t trust anyone on the internet.”
Here on socialcatfish.com, we have ways to find out if the people you’re in contact with are really who they say they are, and we have ways of making them talk. Just kidding, it’s up to you to do that part. The only thing we can do is everything else. So run a search. Take your life back. You might not be in as bad a situation as our girl Tara here, but we can definitely give you that peace of mind.
And remember, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.