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Social networks are full of traps and scams of all kinds. A process difficult to do identifying has gained momentum in recent years…

You have certainly been there; confronted with at least once on social networks, without realizing its toxic nature. A loved one or a complete stranger tells you about their misfortunes, with tears in their eyes. the eye or even with sobs in the voice, often facing the camera. This story will touch you deep within yourself. Sometimes, it will make you aware of a reality, but very often, this practice is full of ulterior motives which can lead to harm. trying to get money from you.

Some people regularly share publications that pull on the emotional strings by opening up about their daily lives, their journey, their disappointments, their indignations or their dramas. Others have made a specialty of quotes and life lessons. If you find yourself facing this kind of publication and you tend to take things personally, be wary: you risk getting involved beyond the point of view. reasonable.

How to detect?

This trend has already started. a name in the United States: “sadfishing”. In an article in the Journal of American College Health, researchers defined it as “a tendency of social media users to increase their social media profile.” Post exaggerations about their emotional state to generate sympathy. In other words, to capture attention or “go to” fishing" to reactions by portraying his feelings, often the saddest.

Sadfishing can be unconscious on the part of those who practice it, evoking emotions that are part of our nature. But there is also a large part of calculation in what we find on the networks. The ploy was clearly deceived. identified in the American media a few years ago, with a very specific case: the influencer Kendall Jenner, known throughout the world, had posted a series of poignant testimonies about his skin problems, which are devastating in his daily life. later that these posts hid a partnership with a skin care brand…

Other cases have since come up in number and not only on web stars at the same time. searching for "likes". Outright scams are spreading, such as “feeling fraud”, listed on the site “The keys to the Bank”. (service of the French Banking Federation). In short, you are contacted by a person in great difficulty who asks you for financial assistance or offers to be paid in exchange for a service. If the process is often very crude, one can easily be tricked by more subtle methods. Sometimes, the fake profile will take the time to phish you for several weeks of innocuous exchanges, before moving on. action.

How to react?

According to Cara Petrofes, a specialist in social media behavior, sadfishing has spread throughout the world. has increased significantly in recent years with worrying effects. According to her, the phenomenon promotes anxiety and anxiety. already exacerbated by this type of media. An anxiety which can damage your health. mental or lead you to over-involve yourself in return, personally or financially. So how to react?

  • If a loved one gives in to temptation, it is advisable to to contact him directly, without reacting on social networks. Don't talk to him about his post, but call him to find out. If this person needs connection, offer them genuine proof of friendship.
  • If it's a simple acquaintance, You can post a few words of encouragement, recommend a solution you've tried or a book you like. A "like" or comments of encouragement will give the authors of these messages a quick dose of dopamine. But don't overdo it.
  • If it's a complete stranger, then it's up to you. it's up to you to decide. You can do nothing of course or send a few kind words. But in any case, move on quickly and don't linger on this conversation, for your morale or your wallet.

Reach out your hand, without accusing someone of Giving in to sadfishing will always be a good thing. But it's better to be warned and avoid letting someone's distress (real or not) lead you into a negative spiral.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116