Sara Altschule
Updated Apr 04, 2015 @ 9:37 am

To Google or not to Google. That is the question. But the answer isn’t clear-cut. There are many benefits to taking a peep at your potential match’s Insta and Facebook. But there are also some drawbacks as well. The problem: Not everything that you read or see online is the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. We’ve got filters and the delete button to show and not show certain things. We choose how we want others to view us online. So, let’s take a real look at the pros and cons of social-media-stalking your date. Because just like an Instagram filter, not everything is so black and white.

Pro: You Double-Check They’re Not a Criminal

Okay, I’m being a bit dramatic. Hopefully, your date doesn’t have a criminal background, but if they do, it’s important to find that out. In this day and age, it’s crucial to be safe about who you are going out with—especially if you’re online dating or it’s a blind date. Listen, nobody is perfect, and everyone has a past. But if it’s a past that involves criminality, you may want to take a step back and reconsider if your potential date is deserving of your future.

Con: You Get A Preconceived Notion Of Them

The problem with snooping through your date’s photos and posts is that you get this preconceived notion of them, that they might not live up to. Some people are funnier online than offline. Or, some lives look more appealing in a filtered life. After scrolling for hours trying to figure out your potential mate, you could have come up with an idea about this person that isn’t exactly true. And when you go on a date with the “real” person, he or she may not live up to your expectations.

Pro: You Can See More Photos

If you’re online dating, sometimes your possible future date might only have a couple of pictures up. And, just a couple isn’t really working for you. Now I’m not saying that looks are all that matter when it comes to the heart. But the heart has to be somewhat attracted to the other person. With that being said, a pro of googling your date could be to have a better sense of what he or she looks like. This is especially true if it’s going to be a blind date. A little less blind might make you a little more insightful.

Con: Too Much Information

There is a very good chance that by stalking your date, you could find out a little more than you actually wanted to know. This is where you find yourself looking through old Facebook albums from 2008, where you see your date for tomorrow night kissing his ex-girlfriend. Um, no thank you. Some things are better left unseen.

Pro: Good Way To See Similarities And Differences

One positive of going to town with Google prior to a date is to see what similar interests you two may have and what differences there are as well. Maybe you will feel more hyped up for the date if you see she is also a huge New Girl fan. Or maybe you see he loves to go to comedy shows, just like you. So if that awkward silence comes along, you can throw out a little pre-spying knowledge and poof, awkward silence no more.

Con: It Can Take Away The Fun Of A Date

With that being said (above), the best part of a date is getting to know each other. If you already know what his or her favorite foods, movies, albums and TV shows are, then it takes all the surprise out of it. One of the best date moments is when you both realize you love the same thing.

With all that in mind, Internet-stalk away! We’re not judging.

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