Question: Hi Moxie. I know you’re not that crazy about using Tinder as an online dating platform; but I am mulling over the idea of returning to it, and I have a quick question. What are your thoughts on giving your snapchat username in your Tinder bio? When I’ve used Tinder in the past, many guys have asked me for my snapchat username and I rejected them because I felt like it was too much too soon. I am now wondering, was I being too uptight? I draw the line at giving out my Instagram and Facebook user name; but what I like about Tinder is the guys on Tinder cannot see every single post/picture of mine. And they cannot see my friends list. Snapchat is not archived like Instagram and Facebook, snap stories last for only 24 hours.
Snap stories on last for twenty-four hours, but the screen shots people take last forever. Sure, you’ll be notified that someone took a screen shot of you, but by then it’s too late. Snapchat and kik – for the most part – are used for two reasons and two reasons only:
1. To exchange nude pics.
2. To vet the person and make sure they’re attractive. Asking for access to social media accounts is the new, “Do you have more pics?” Don’t fall for it.
I do not recommend linking any of your social media to your dating profiles. Here’s one example of why this is a bad idea:
I met someone on OKCupid a couple of months ago. He linked his Instagram to his profile. While I couldn’t figure out what his Instagram username was, there was a bread crumb trail of clues leading to his identity. In one of the photos he tagged someone. I looked that person up. Hmm. That woman looks familiar. Oh, right! He posted a pic of her to his profile! That’s the ex-girlfriend he mentioned. Let me just hit up Facebook. Oh hey! Look! He posted two pics of his other ex-girlfriend on his dating profile. And – AND – his ex-girlfriend had just recently uploaded a picture of them together looking all cozy. Keep it classy! From that point on, I gave the guy the side-eye. It doesn’t matter if they’re “just friends.” They’re still his ex-girlfriends. There’s something incredibly passive aggressive about posting shots of your exes on your dating profile. (There’s also something super sketchy about your ex-girlfriend uploading pics of the two of you together when she knows you’re out there meeting other women. Paranoid? Whatever.)
The point I’m making is that no matter what safeguards you think will prevent someone from learning more about you, you’re still vulnerable. A hashtag, a username, a location, a name mentioned in passing; these are all clues people will use to find you. Here’s another little story to prove my point:
Last week I was on Tinder and came across the profile of a guy I recognized. I looked down at our mutual friends. I clicked on her profile to find him. Hey look, everyone! He’s listed as her boyfriend! While that example actually supports the opinion that linking is a good idea as it provides you with intel about your matches, change the context. Maybe your match sees a pic of you they don’t like, or sees that you’re friends with an Ex or someone they don’t like. I’ve passed on guys strictly because our mutual connections included a number of people I consider to be douchebags. If you’re really stupid and don’t have your privacy settings on lockdown, you could lose their interest immediately because they’ll judge you based on your feed.
Dating Mistake 101: Don’t give people more information than they need before you meet them. At this point, one thing – ONE INNOCUOUS THING – could get you thrown into the discard bin.