Navigating a Tricky, Twisted and Highly Flirtatious World of Social Media: A Guide

Social media can be tricky, but heres a guide to make it easier for any confused boys out there!

Graphic by Maria Lemos

Social media can be tricky, but here’s a guide to make it easier for any confused boys out there!

Ryan Adler, Staff Writer

A total of 240 million individuals actively use social media apps in the United States, which represents 72.3% of the population. 

Freshman Hudson Cocchiara said his daily average on social media is five hours, and University of South Carolina student Kinsey Holmen said she’s on her phone surfing social media between five to six hours a day.  

According to The University of Maine, “The average time a person spends on social media a day is 2 hours 24 minutes; if someone signed up at 16 and lived to 70, they would spend 5.7 years of their life on it.” 

“I FaceTime and text my friends almost every single day,” sophomore Madeline Hicks said. “If I couldn’t talk to them outside of school, I’d be here Saturday and Sunday, too.”  

Like Hicks, many teenagers have allowed social media to become an integral part of their lives… 

 “If anything, I wish he would just snap me back”, said sophomore Rania Saeed 

 …and hearts. 

What was once a boy courting a girl with a nice bouquet of flowers is now replaced by a picture of his face and some humdrum message on Snapchat. And what was once a face-to-face experience where a guy asks a girl out for a nice dinner now comes in the form of an Instagram direct message to casually “hang out.” 

What was once the norm is now extremely rare. 

Through uber-popular platforms like Snapchat, Instagram, Tik Tok, iMessage and Facetime, finding romance looks a lot different than Romeo and Juliet.  

Many romantic relationships now evolve over a series of brief snippets, pictures and short messages, sometimes even without people ever meeting face to face. Relationships develop on virtual and very public talking stages, unofficial and awkward online “situationships” between a boy and a girl.   

It is important, however, to address these online interactions, since they often result in several problems, primarily caused by the actions of teenage boys. 

So, us girls generally agree on seven tips you boys can benefit from the next time you find yourself in this complicated phase of “talking to someone.” 

Number One: Authenticity is Key 

We are high schoolers, and let’s face it: we want to advertise the best version of ourselves because we care about our image and how our peers see us.  However, it’s equally important to be real.  

The profile you create, Snapchat you send, or video you post, should be authentic and portray your true self.  

To put it in simple words, stop sending your ceiling or a part of your face, and start sending your smile.  

After all, a girl wants to know you. Yes, the real you, not a fictional or filtered somebody you inhabit to impress girls.  

Besides, it may just be the qualities you try to hide online that attract a girl the most.   

As your mom always says, “If a girl can’t like you for you, then she was never the one to begin with.”  

Number Two: Operate with Confidence 

“In the real world, people are attracted to confident, charismatic individuals who know themselves and know what they want,” said in a blog by young entrepreneur, and best known for his viral eBook “How to Get 10K Twitter Followers In Under 5 Weeks”, Alex Hamm.  

If you’re looking to catch a girl’s attention, the most attractive thing you can do is be confident, but not in a cocky way. 

A good way to do this is contributing to a conversation, finding ways to show you care, engaging in a girl’s  posts, old or new, and having true conversations outside the social media realm. 

“Of course, if they actually want it to go somewhere, they need to initiate hanging out and talk to us in person if they have the opportunity to,” said sophomore Olivia Seitz.  

Make social media an avenue to communicate, but not the only one.  Compliment your social media interactions with face-to-face get-togethers.   

Think about it this way: if you have the nerve to talk to her online, at least have the decency to say “hi” in the hallway. 

Number Three: Don’t Play the Field 

Additionally, when you’re talking to a girl, loyalty is one of the top things we want to see. In the online talking stage, you are not officially exclusive, and it can be hard to distinguish between right and wrong. 

For example, if you follow tons of girls on Instagram and Tik Tok or have a high snap score, it could appear from a girl’s perspective that you’re a “player.” However, one might be willing to invest more if they see loyalty, and that they aren’t just one of many.   

 In the end, it never feels good to be second best or led on.  

Number Four: Honesty Is the Best Policy 

It’s a tricky game. 

Two people afraid of being vulnerable, scared to admit their feelings, instantly erasing the chance for anything to go beyond a talking stage.  

This becomes an enormous waste of time and stinks for both parties.  

Rejection is something everyone is afraid of, but without being vulnerable, great opportunities will be missed, and people get confused. 


“Sometimes they think they’re trying and they’re just not,” said sophomore Vivian Higgins.  

What guys communicate to girls through social media is sometimes different from how we interpret it and vice versa.  

Here’s an example:  

A guy sends a snap to a girl he fancies, but she leaves him “on opened.” 

When the girl receives this snap, she doesn’t respond because she thinks she doesn’t look good. She responds a few days later when she thinks she looks better.  

Continuing the confusing cycle, the guy leaves her on open, assuming that she is uninterested and doesn’t wish to converse with him. 

As a result, the girl no longer snaps the guy she likes. 

The only way to be certain is to be honest, and although smartphones know a lot, they don’t know what’s going on inside a girl’s mind.  

Number Five: Don’t Be a Creep. Be Respectful. 

The worst thing you can do is exceed a girl’s boundaries.  

Hiding behind a screen makes it easier to do things you wouldn’t normally do in person, and this makes guys more inclined to behaviors that aren’t necessarily appropriate.  

As a rule, sending things your grandma wouldn’t be comfortable seeing would not be okay to be sending to a girl, especially one that you are just getting to know. 


Number Six: Act with Caution 

Sometimes social media is the only reference that can give a girl a borderline judgment as to who you are. So, who you follow, the things you post or the way you talk needs to be done cautiously.  

In the end, it can be seen everywhere by everyone.  

“Posting pictures of mean exchanges with your friends, reposting a bunch of girls’ pictures on Instagram and putting, ‘bored hmu’ on public Snapchat stories all suggest the type of person you are, off and online,” said freshmen Bella Marca. 

It’s obvious guys aren’t on social media just to be involved with girls; however, these are things to be aware of. 

Number Seven: The rule that always stays: have fun! 

Don’t make it so serious.  

Have fun with it, meet new people and pursue those sparks. 

Social media should not act as an escape from reality, but rather make your reality a little more interesting. 

Good luck, boys.