"Last night, my date was ruined by someone I've never even met."

Last night my date was ruined by someone I’ve never even met.

He’s 33 and married with a child. He’s a Taurus. And he’s worth $70 billion dollars.

His name? Mark Zuckerberg.

dating fail
Image via Giphy.

OK, so I guess I'm partly responsible too. It’s not like by creating Facebook he literally tied my hands to the keyboard and forced me to stalk my potential suitor’s Facebook. And Instagram. And LinkedIn profile.

What he did do however is make tagged photos freely accessible - on a loop.

And give me a direct link to the profiles of family members that I could comprehensively stalk too.

So all in all, I would place the burden of the dates success squarely on Zuckerberg’s shoulders. One hundred per cent.

All the mystery, ruined.

There are just so many reasons why the invention of Facebook - which I'll admit I couldn't live without - makes dating in 2017 a minefield.

Firstly, it ruins all the mystery.

The best part of going on dates is the gradual exploration of your companion’s personality, interests and background. It’s like running through a maze with no right way or dead end (I use 'running' figuratively- running is awful). Every conversation leads to another tangent and then to a story, and then off you go on another tangent.

BUT last night, thanks to Zuckerberg, I felt like I already knew everything that could possibly be a topic of small talk.

facebook is changing dating
Facebook is ruining small talk. Image via Giphy.

I knew he went to Melbourne to visit his sister a few weeks ago. I knew he played midfield for his second-tier football team. And what’s worse is I couldn’t ask how his trip to Melbourne was because he hadn’t told me about it yet. Or about his sister. (Who from what I’ve seen on Facebook seems lovely...)

So instead of asking him about how his game went this weekend, we’re talking about croissants. But even more infuriatingly, I could tell he hadn’t stalked me back because, if he had, he would have known I have an unhealthy addiction to pastries already. So this croissant conversation is moot.

It’s the over-thinker's blessing (... and curse).

Taking that into consideration however, Facebook and Instagram are a gift for compulsive over-thinkers like myself.

Instead of sitting here 'over-thinking' about how he's either not-that-interested OR maybe just a bit clueless when it comes to women, I can do a fact-check of any and all previous relationships.

I’m not proud of this. And again I affirm the blame lies squarely on Zuckerberg here, BUT browsing through Instagram tagged photos about my date provided me with definitive evidence of relationship experience. While he might have deleted any past photos of him and his ex, she might not have... And, jackpot.

Facebook is changing dating: Last night my date was ruined because of it.
When your search produces the goods. Image via Giphy.

Zuckerberg also had the genius idea of marking an individual’s ‘active’ status on Facebook. Instead of panicking why someone hasn't replied, it’s as simple as checking the last time they were online and counting back to check if your message has fallen within that time bracket.

It’s not a practice I endorse, but when the (irrational) anxiety kicks in I can’t help but take up Zuckerberg’s offer and check.

LISTEN: Mamamia Out Loud share the 36 questions that will make you fall in love. (Post continues after audio...)

Your date shares flat-earth posts.

Facebook saved me from a few inevitably bad dates too.

By creating the option for weak profile security, Zuckerberg has made sure you can dodge a dating bullet without even leaving the house (or being 'friends' first).

If a Facebook stalk reveals a date who:
a) Shares flat-earth conspiracy theory posts (non-ironically);
b) Doesn’t know the difference between you’re/your or they’re/their/there; or
c) Isn’t averse to dropping F or C-bombs in every second sentence there is a high likelihood there will be no second date. Sorry not sorry.

Facebook is changing dating
Flat-earther? No, thank you. Image via Giphy.

More disappointingly, Zuckerberg can ruin that amazing bubbly warm feeling you get after a great blind date. You’re lying in bed afterwards semi-planning your future together and you tentatively type his name into Facebook in search of his profile. It pops up, you click in and realise he recently broke up with his fiancé. Last week. Ouch. That’s difficult to bounce back from.

Thanks to Zuckerberg, there is a lesson in this for everyone.

Keep the stalking to a minimum if you want to truly enjoy your date. Or alternatively, do your due diligence to make sure your date knows proper syntax or isn't someone who will write a whole piece about your date the next day which is publicly broadcast on social media. Oh, wait...