The “Catfish” Lesson: Don’t be a Fool

 

In Self & Society in Virtual Contexts CM308 we watched the documentary Catfish. If you haven’t had the chance to watch this movie and you spend any time at all on social platforms you must watch it.

If the documentary reveals anything it is this:

We want to believe what we read and see on line.

We know we should not believe, but the eyes deceive and the mind over rides the heart. Our human weakness to feel needed makes us easy targets for the cruel and cold hearted. The ease with which identity can be carefully constructed on line is frightening.

You can buy views and followers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. For a few dollars you can create an entirely fake persona. Anyone can be fooled by this simple everyday business practice. And, unfortunately, it is a very common business practice.

What Catfish reveals is that you really never know if the person you are interacting with online is actually who they present themselves to be.

Online identities are easily constructed.

We can be easily fooled.

The movie explains the length to which an individual will go to construct a false online identity. It also explores just how easily we can be fooled into believing another’s presentation of themselves on the internet.

But, why? Why do we so easily believe?

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