Nev Schulman is known as a game changer in the world of online dating. After discovering that his Facebook girlfriend wasn’t who she said she was, Nev created a documentary to reveal the process of catching a “Catfish.” Now, Nev is bringing his story to the students of UNC Charlotte. The Campus Activities Board (CAB) is hosting an event in which Nev will discuss his experiences in online dating, his thoughts about the future of online romance and the success of “Catfish.”
The practice of “Catfishing” is when a person pretends to be someone they are not online through social media or other means. This could be used to deceive a person into having a romantic relationship with a fake persona. Most of the time, a person will find photos from other sources like Google images or modeling websites to trick someone and remain anonymous. Sometimes, people are “Catfished” for years. Some subjects featured on the show are even engaged to someone they have never met, because they are so thoroughly convinced that the person they are in an online relationship with is genuine.
Now, Nev and his friend, Max Joseph, are dedicated to helping others find out who they are involved with. In most interactions, the person who is doing the catfishing doesn’t match up to their images, but still have the same personality. Despite the deception, the show follows real people and real feelings, which audiences can relate to. After the huge success of the first season, viewers wanted to see more surprising stories. MTV is currently airing season two episodes of “Catfish” on Tuesday nights.
Although all of this seems unlikely, college is an environment that lends itself to “Catfishing.” Those tricked may seem clueless to outsiders, but this type of interaction could happen to any student. Because UNC Charlotte is such a big university, a friend request may pop up on Facebook that looks legitimate, even with mutual friends. With classes, studying and extracurricular activities, students are busier than ever and may not have the time to meet. Resorting to flirting through social networking sites may be the only choice.
The “Catfish” event is open and free to everyone. It will be held in McKnight Hall at the Cone University Center at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 24. Following the presentation will be a meet and greet with Nev and refreshments. Don’t miss out on this chance to get professional catfishing advice and meet a rising star.