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This perception is fueled by sensationalistic cases like the Craigslist Killer and the false identities created by subjects on MTV’s . To address the first issue, there are many ways to meet people online—dating sites, chat rooms or forums, or social networking sites.
A survey of 84 online daters found that almost 60 percent misrepresented their weight and 48 percent their height, often using photos that helped obscure the truth (Toma et al., 2008).
It is also somewhat common for online daters to stretch the truth about their age, with about 19 percent lying about it (Toma et al., 2008).
These ratings were then compared to personality ratings made by strangers who only viewed the subjects' Facebook pages.
Strangers’ perceptions, based on the Facebook pages, showed a greater correspondence with the actual than ideal personality ratings, suggesting that Facebook profiles reflect actual and not idealized selves.
One survey of over 5,000 users of online dating sites asked them to rate, on a 10-point scale, how likely they were to misrepresent themselves in areas such as appearance and job information (Hall et al., 2010).
The average rating on these items was about 2, indicating a relatively low level of deception overall. They're especially likely to be dishonest in how they describe their physical appearance.
They imagine that online forums are filled with sexual predators and people using false identities. Online interactions vary in terms of two major questions: (1) What venues are we using to communicate, and, (2) What are we lying about?
By this definition, even the expression of hidden “true self” traits could qualify as lies.
In addition, the average subject only lied about once per interaction, even with this loose definition of lying.
In addition, those high in the trait of are more likely to be dishonest on these sites.
In all aspects of their social lives, self-monitors are concerned with outward appearance and adapt their behavior to match the social situation.
This means that if you meet people via Facebook, you’re likely to be getting a relatively accurate impression of their overall personality. Some people are more prone to deceptive behavior online than others, such as those high in sensation-seeking, and those who show addictive behavior toward the Internet (Lu, 2008).