You’re mindlessly swiping through your dating app of choice when you come across the mysterious instance of a guy who puts his Instagram handle in his profile. What are you supposed to do with that? Does he actually want you to have the chance to learn more about him beyond the six pictures currently available to you? Or is just a f*ckboy move? He’s basically giving you permission to stalk him, right? In the latest episode of our U Up? podcast, Jared and Jordana discussed their opinions on this suspicious tactic. Jared, a male himself, broke down what guys’ real intentions are when they use it.
1. It’s An Excuse For You To Give Him Your Insta
Jordana’s first impression of the issue was totally positive; she trusted that guys do it as a way to say, “For more information, click here.” But Jared, our window to the male psyche, has a theory that if you are automatically granted your match’s Instagram, this gives him the ammo he needs to ask you for your Instagram. You have his, so now you owe him yours! It’s just returning the favor, he doesn’t make the rules. Now he can go look at all the pictures of you he wants, like, in a creepy way. Jared said the way guys put their Insta handle in their dating app bios is “like putting cheese out for the mouse”—as bait, basically.
2. It’s A Gateway To Slide Into The DMs
Why does a guy want your Instagram anyway, aside from the opportunity to look at your bikini pics? It’s simple: once the guy has successfully acquired your Instagram, he has full access to take the conversation into the DMs. Jared explained, “Now they’re in DM land, and that’s where casual happens.” So apparently, Instagram handle guys are so manipulative that they can make you vulnerable to them without doing anything to actually earn the comfort level required to get to the DMs. And here we were thinking we just had a better way to get to know their personalities! Wow.
3. Which Is A Gateway To The “U Up?” Message
According to Jared, guys think, “I wanna see your Instagram because I just wanna DM with you so that we can gain some trust…and we can go meet up late at night.” I truly underestimated guys’ propensity for Blair Waldorf-level scheming. No, Blair Waldorf wouldn’t plant the seed for a successful “U up?” text, but she would know just how to set someone up to do exactly what she wants.
4. It Makes It Less Douchey To Ghost You
When the “U up?” comes from DM land, guys can ghost you and cover their douchey tracks. “If you’re texting or messaging on Instagram or something that isn’t your phone number, that becomes the excuse for ‘We’re not even that close, we don’t even text,’” Jared said, and therefore it doesn’t count for as bad of an offense. Or at least the guy can tell himself that in order to sleep better at night. The bar really is the floor here.
5. It Sets You Up For Disappointment
If you use a guy’s Instagram page to learn more about him and it makes you actually like him enough to get invested in him and think he is the man for you, then you might get disappointed when he’s not as interested as you are. If you’re selective in who you decide to actually talk to and consider going on a first date with, then stalking his Instagram only to become more and more interested could leave you hurt when, after all, he is the asshole who put his Instagram bio in his dating profile just to get into your DMs (and eventually, pants). Jared told Jordana, as his dad always says, “The honest one always gets f*cked.” In this case, figuratively AND literally.
If you want to hear more about the Instagram handle tactic, listen to the latest U Up? episode below.
Images: Erik Lucatero / Unsplash; Giphy (3); Tenor
The brilliant Alex “Hitch” Hitchens once furiously blurted with a mouth full of a chubby dude’s saliva, “YOU GO 90, AND I GO 10—YOU DON’T GO THE FULL 100.” Since then, I chose to apply the “maybe don’t go all the way” rule to every aspect of my life—hooking up with a stranger, finishing a bottle of wine by myself on a Tuesday, sliding into my friend’s hot brother’s DMs, everything. Why? Because things like successfully sliding into the DMs requires a complex set of skills not even Liam Neeson obtains, and going all in at first contact will only result in a lifetime of rejection, and I’m just assuming you don’t have the funds for that kind of therapy.
Let’s get one thing straight. When it comes to flirting, men are fucking clueless. They have the cranial capacity of burnt toast. But the main problem with sliding into DMs is that it usually never works (oh Jesus, wipe that dumb Taylor Swift surprised look off your face—you know this). A guy’s inbox acts as a limited platform for a first and only impression. It’s like one of those blind The Voice auditions. It’s a real audition, and you need to be fully prepared if you plan on sliding into home. Actually, now that I think of it, they should call it plunging into DMs, because sliding refers to a graceful movement, and making a smooth landing into someone’s inbox only exists in like, a Cameron Diaz RomCom. Anyway, as I said, this shit rarely works but like, never say never, and in the age of non-existent human interaction, cyber flirting is crucial to your duty of repopulating the earth, so take my advice in order to avoid a painful nose dive into his DMs followed by this landing:
1. Don’t Go Straight For The Prize
Sliding into DMs should be the
desperate final resort in reaching out to a guy person (civil rights, this is the ‘90s), and should only be done if you have no other way of contacting them. That said, I’m assuming you’ve barely said two words to this person, so going all in at first actual contact is like, pushing legal boundaries. If you actually have access to a phone number or idk, you’re fluent in the English language and you still choose to DM, you’re garbage. But what I’m saying here is that going straight for awkward introduction will result in failure. Remember those dumb arcade claw machines that stole all your money and also your will to live? Remember slamming the button down and thinking this was the money shot, only to be strapped for cash and some dignity? Exactly.
Instead, ease into it. To appear on his radar, start by swapping the automatic DM for a few likes and a follow. Even better if he’s private, since he’ll be forced to accept your request and probably creep on you in the process.
Your follower count Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither should this sexual buildup be.
2. Don’t Like All Their Posts
This should be the first idiot-proof rule of social media 101 that you learned in like 7th grade, so let me circle back around the whole “slowly easing in” thing. Nobody in their right mind has ever looked at some freak in their notifications who randomly liked 25 photos in a row and thought, “Aw, how sweet!” That’s fucking weird and an automatic no from any normal human. Showing non-DM interest is important, but a “like” 37 weeks deep into the abyss just screams restraining order. This is literally how Blac Chyna snaked her way into the Kardashian circle, and look how that ended up. K I made that up, but you believed it for a sec, so keep it to a three like maximum, or forever hold your blocked status.
3. Don’t Let Your Hoe Flag Fly Too Soon
Don’t get me wrong—flirting is good. Leading someone on is healthy. These things are the gateway to a lifetime of probable divorce pure bliss, but being a straight-up thirst machine out the gate is a one-way ticket to “we should do this again sometime” territory, and FYI, that’s the type of “we should do this again sometime” where you’ll never do this again sometime. That means refrain from using cleavage, dirty talk and/or the eggplant emoji in the first few conversations. To back this statement up, I
called upon my slutty friends conducted lot of research for this article, and asked one friend if the whore-yourself-out tactic actually works. Her response: “I mean, mine usually works when they want to slide into my V”. I’m not even making this up. I told you: hard-hitting journalism. I realize that my friend just gave me useless advice, so moral of the story—expect to be one-night-stood (not a crime, btw) unless you save the sleaze for the third drink date.
4. Don’t Be Basic (Fucking Duh)
Did you not learn anything when scoping out a semester-long lab partner to cheat off of in college? Your mutual friends and your shared hobbies are always your allies. DMing is basically the same thing. Initiating a conversation with “hey” will only generate one word back, unless you begin by mentioning your mutual friend they also follow that you haven’t talked to since she held your hair back on spring break of ’13. God I hate myself for saying that. But really—when someone hits you with a “Hi!”, your initial response is, “Do I know you?” so now you’ve just come off as serial psycho, explaining that you saw him while you were deep into your cousin’s best friend’s sister’s Instagram. But whatever, if all else fails, you can always use the “you look really familiar” cop-out.
5. Don’t Keep Messaging If They Stop Responding
It starts off as any casual excuse: “Maybe he’s just busy at work…” fucking spare me, it’s 2017—nobody’s actually working eight hours a day these days unless you’re Harvey Weinstein’s attorney. How else do you think I was able to get through my Vampire Diaries binge in two months? Look, there’s no excuses here. Unless he died, there’s no reason you should be double or triple messaging. That’s just like, the rules of
6. Don’t Have Any Expectations
Girls who say they have no expectations and have “nothing to lose” ironically have all the expectations and somehow lose their shit once they realize that sliding into someone’s DMs isn’t exactly the road to a life filled with white picket fences and Saturday morning soccer games. I don’t even need research to tell you that your only means of survival is to go into this with no expectations. Like, none. Like, the kind of expectations you had when you DMed Josh Duhamel now that he and Fergie are toast. The kind where your mom tells you that her friend’s cousin’s wannabe musician son would be perfect for you. Those kinds of expectations.
Anyway, I’m waiting on this guy to comment on my cleavage Snap, so I don’t have time to babysit you anymore.
In the battle of the photo apps, which one is the betchiest? Clearly there’s a fight for queen bee right now between the different apps, but only one can be prom queen. In case you haven’t picked up on it, we’re talking about Snapchat vs. Instagram. On the one hand, Snapchat was def here first, and it’d be hard to argue that Insta didn’t literally steal every part of Snapchat’s business model for themselves. On the other hand, Instagram is more popular and allows you to post your best selfies to the public, forever (or until Instagram folds, whichever comes first). It’s hard to choose, but much like that summer where you had two boyfriends, you’re gonna have to pick one. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each by judging a specific set of very concrete and important metrics, so that when you fiinally run out of room on your phone you know which app to delete.
1. Getting a reaction on your photos
Instagram lets you like photos and get likes on your photos. If you need the dopamine rush of seeing the likes roll in, Instagram is def better. While Snapchat will let you reply to stories or snaps, nobody else can see what your friends are saying. So your crush can’t see how many bros commented your beach pic with the fire emoji, and what’s the point of that?
2. Stalking your friends and enemies
Simply put, you can’t do as deep of a stalking session on Snapchat the way you can with Instagram—it’s not like you can stalk someone’s Snapchat 52 weeks deep. Whether or not that’s a good thing depends on your stalking goals. Also, Snapchat is a fucking snitch since when you watch someone’s Snap story, it tells them you were creeping. Don’t get me wrong, that’s great for when I want the smug satisfaction of knowing my ex looked at my story featuring my new puppy, but not so great when I’m doing the stalking and I’m not tryna get exposed.
3. Sending private messages
There’s a whole song written about sliding into your DM’s (thanks YG), but when it comes to messaging privately, Snapchat is like Kanye and Instagram is Meek Mill. If you Snap someone enough, icons will appear by their name (whose exact symbolism is unclear), so anyone who said making friends isn’t a competition was def wrong. Instagram’s DM’s, on the other hand, feel like when someone pokes you on Facebook. It’s an option, sure, but like it’s just a little too transparent.
4. Posting stories
Instagram came into the stories game like a rapper moving in on your girl at the club. Instagram stories are like a push-up bra: We don’t need it, but we’ll use it when we’re bored because we like the attention it gets us. Snapchat has way better filters, though, which
is better for showing the world how basic you are makes posting Snap stories more fun. But Instagram has a wider audience because you probably have randos following you that you wouldn’t have on your Snapchat. It’s easier to post an Instagram story because you basically have Instagram open at all times, but even with the extra thumb movement Snapchat still has better options. Sometimes you just need to dog filter yourself for attention.
5. Going live
Snapchat doesn’t have a going live option, so Instagram automatically wins on this. Instagram lets you go live, and the live video doesn’t save the way Facebook does. Going live used to be horrifying to think about, but now we’ve come around to it. It’s basically like posting a Snapchat in real time, and people interact with you more than they do on a post.
6. Texting your crush
Both Snapchat and Instagram have messaging, but Snapchat’s is def better. Snapchat’s messages disappear after you read them, which means that any messages you send while drunk or after 1am don’t count. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said about that fuckboy who tried to finesse a hookup via Instagram DM’s, which you obviously posted on all your social media immediately after. Also, sexting is 100% better on Snapchat. How would you even sext on Instagram?
7. Making people jealous of your life
Instagram is better for posting shit you want people to actually see, like your beach vacation pics or that time you met Drake. Snapchat is better if you want to individually make someone jealous, because you can see the second they’ve watched your story. If you’re trying to low-key let Brad know you’re dating someone new, use Snapchat. If you’re trying to let that girl in your marketing class know you went to Fashion Week, use Instagram.
Even though it’s a tie, we’re going to say Instagram is the winner because you can judge more people and get more attention. But on days when their face filters are good, Snapchat is def the winner. If you want to have the best of both worlds, Hannah Montana, you could always just download your selfies with the Snapchat filters and post them to Instagram. That may be cheating and the most annoying thing in the universe, but again, just like two-boyfriend summer, sometimes you just need to double dip.