Tindstagramming Is The Creepy New Dating Trend You Need To Know

Photo: Meg O'Donnell
It's no secret that digital dating makes it easier to treat each other like dirt. The lack of accountability on dating apps and sites means we're ghosting, breadcrumbing, benching, zombieing, kittenfishing and submarining each other left, right and centre.
These terms are all useful in describing what happens when a connection fizzles out. However, bad digital dating behaviour can actually arise before two people even match on an app, simply because some people won't take "no" for an answer. Enter "Tindstagramming", a new term for a dreadful phenomenon you may have been the victim of but hadn't really thought about until now.
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A "Tindstagrammer", so dubbed in a recent Select All article, is a blindly persistent Tinder user who sneaks into someone's Instagram DMs after being turned down on the dating app. The trend sees people, mainly women, receiving reams of unwanted messages from creepy men who "don't trust in a woman’s ability to say no and mean it," as journalist Paris Martineau explains.
It stems from the seemingly innocent decision by Tinder in early 2015 to allow users to link their Instagram accounts to their profiles. Until then, it had been easier for Tinder users to stay anonymous to each other by keeping their basic profile information (first name, general employment, education and bio) as generic as they liked.
While it has always been possible to find someone from a dating app via Google – by simply searching their first name and company name and finding their LinkedIn profile, for instance – the pairing of a Tinder profile and Instagram account makes it far easier for matchless rejects to find the "hot" person they took a fancy to on the app. (Of course, you can avoid being targeted altogether by simply not linking your Instagram account to your dating profile. But this begs the question: why should it be you and not the Tindstagrammer who has to modify their behaviour?)
Dater Indigo Rancourt told Select All she receives Instagram DMs from her Tinder rejects nearly every day – and unsurprisingly, she's yet to be won over by any of them. “The first time it happened, I was honestly shocked,” she said. “I didn’t think this actually happened — that people honest to god thought DM-sliding from Tinder was gonna be the way to, what, get laid? Fall in love? I don’t know what they’re looking for, but it’s not coming from me.”
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And it's not just guys on Tinder who take it upon themselves to "reach out" to women who have rebuffed them. Steph, 28, a model and actor, has had guys from Bumble and Raya attempt the technique, too. "They normally say something along the lines of 'Heyyyyyy!' but occasionally with more 'Ys'," she told Refinery29.
"I'd only had Bumble for approximately 48 hours and hadn't matched with anyone – not for lack of trying – but there was one guy who not only DM'ed me and Facebook messaged me, but also vaguely knew my sister and messaged her, so she was forced to get involved, too," she told us. Steph's sister's response was suitably to-the-point: "Hey. She's my sister and she isn't interested. Hope you're well." The guy finally took the hint.
Steph has had one good experience of being contacted out of the blue, however, which may give solace to disgruntled-yet-persistent online daters. "99 percent of the time I think it's creepy as heck," she told us. "But I had one experience where a quite sexy older actor got in contact with me [on Raya] after seeing my Insta and we ended up having a fling when I went to LA!"
On the whole, though, it's better to cut one's losses and not bother saying "heyyyyyyy". Dozens of women have shared their experiences of Tindstagramming on Twitter – and if these complaints aren't evidence enough that blind messages aren't a way to score a date and fall in deep, passionate love (with someone who has already rejected you), we don't know what is.
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Just give it up, guys.
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