Wednesday 12 May 2021
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.theguardian - 26 days ago

Catfish UK hosts Julie Adenuga and Oobah Butler: ‘Manipulating people online has never been easier’

As a British version of the hit US reality show launches, we spoke to its presenters about the rise of dating deception in lockdown – and what they’re doing to helpIf any evidence were needed about the cultural significance of Catfish, the 2010 US documentary that explored deception in online dating, the clue is in the name. The film follows a lovestruck Nev Schulman as he tries to track down the 19-year-old girl to whom he thinks he is speaking on Facebook (she turns out to be a 40-year-old married woman). The film was spun off into a hit reality show on MTV, which was credited with introducing the word “catfishing” into the popular lexicon.“Catfishing” describes the use of a fake or fictionalised online persona for fraudulent or deceptive purposes (the person perpetrating the deception is the catfish). In the TV show, Schulman and his team help others to unmask their online sweethearts, often with shocking results (my favourite endings include the one where a woman learns her husband is the catfish and the one where a couple tricks the show into paying for their tickets to meet). Continue reading...


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