Context: When embarking on a dating journey with a new prospect, it is important to thoroughly vet a gentleman to ensure that he is, in fact, a real person who is not catfishing you. Social media is here to help. Allow J to show you the ropes of a successful LinkedIn stalking expedition.

LinkedIn is God’s gift to humanity.

Ok, ok, yes, tequila comes first. But LinkedIn slides in closely behind there. Why? Let me count the ways.
1. Networking is very important for things like career advancement and sneaking your way into jobs that you’re not qualified for but, hey, you know someone!
2. You can stalk the shit out of that dude who dropped out of high school and has low key blocked you on Facebook, but you still want to know what landscaping company his deadbeat ass is working at this month.
3. Recruiters will message you all the fucking time and, while you’ll probably never respond, it’s super fun to be wanted by even more people than you already are.
4. Aforementioned stalking of potential romantic interests to make sure they will have the financial means to support you in the future.

“Wow!” you must be thinking. “This is incredible! Thank you, J, for enlightening me! But, how do I do this, and what tips do you have?!?!”

Well, readers, I would be happy to demonstrate!

STEP 1: MAKE YOUR ASS PRIVATE OR YOU WILL REGRET EVERYTHING

One of the most entertaining features of LinkedIn is that you can see who’s stalking your profile. For example, one of my ex-boyfriends once visited my profile every day for three months. Why, bro? What did you think you would find?

This feature will also ruin your life.

The catch is, if you can see who’s looking at your profile, the people you stalk will also see that you’re stalking them. No bueno for these Tinder randos whose last names you’re not even supposed to know.

THERE IS A SOLUTION.

Go into your account settings, go to profile privacy…

Go to ‘Profile viewing options,’ and set yourself to ‘Private mode’

Yes, you will no longer be able to check out who’s looking at you, but it’s worth it to be able to stalk the shit out of anyone you’ve ever wanted. You’re welcome.

STEP 2: TYPE AS MUCH INFO AS YOU CAN GET INTO GOOGLE

Let’s say you’re chatting with a lovely Bumble boy named ‘Matt.’ “Oh no!” you must be thinking. “There are so many Matts in this world! How on earth will I ever find him?!”

Elementary, my dear Watson. You can glean a LOT of information from a Tinder bio. School? Check. Job? Probably. Hometown? Maybe! So, what you do is take all of this information, plug it into your search bar, add ‘LinkedIn,’ and let Google magic do the work for you.

FYI – Anyone with this profile is likely a major douchebag and should be approached with caution. Sincerely, former Big 4 employee and lifetime Duke hater.

You might have to dig through a few profiles, but a few minutes of stalking is worth it to ensure you don’t wind up on a several-hour date with someone who has not yet been endorsed for their Microsoft Excel skills. Who doesn’t know Excel at this point in their lives?

STEP 3: JUDGE THEM FOR EVERYTHING THEY’VE EVER DONE

FIRST: JOB
This, as the first thing listed, is the easiest to check. Seem legit? Good. Seem high paying? Excellent. Bonus points if you check out the average salary for the role on GlassDoor. Due diligence, folks. Due. Diligence.

SECOND: SCHOOL
There are a lot of hackneyed operations trying to pass for higher education these days. Case in point – University of Phoenix. Not a real place. Better luck next time. DeVry? That’s a no from me. South Harmon Institute of Technology? Unless you’re Justin Long, I’m going to pass.

Also, be sure to pay close attention to the year they graduated, particularly if you met them IRL. Age is a sneaky factor, as S recently found out when she LinkedIn stalked a man she met at Provision and realized that he graduated in 2006 aka IS 33 YEARS OLD. Which would be fine, if he hadn’t texted her today that they can’t be in a relationship because she doesn’t want children yet. Yikes.

THIRD: ACTIVITIES
When evaluating potential romantic partners, it’s important to know what kind of person you’re looking for. Are you the type of girl who would rather sit on the couch and watch Netflix for 48 hours straight than go to the gym and the farmers market and BRUNCH and SPORTS and fun times?!?!? Well, then, you probably won’t want the guy whose LinkedIn activity looks like this:

This is not a ‘Netflix and Chill’ person. Better move on to the next, or grab your Rosetta Stone, because you know you’re about to be judged for knowing no language other than your native English and some broken Ubbi Dubbi you somehow remember from a childhood spent watching ‘ZOOM’ on PBS and not leaving the couch.

FOURTH: DON’T WORD VOMIT ON YOUR DATE AND REVEAL YOURSELF

I have this recurring nightmare where I’m on a date and my dumb ass lets it slip that I know WAY more about my date than I should. It goes a little something like this:

J: *Don’t let him know I stalked him online, don’t let him know I stalked him online*
Date: Yeah, so I was visiting my uncle…
J: DAVE OR JEFF?!

Alcohol can make this exceedingly difficult. BUT YOU CAN DO IT. RESIST THE URGE TO RUIN EVERYTHING. Stay strong, little thots.

So there you have it! Everything you need to know about the art of the LinkedIn stalk. What are your favorite stalking methods? Are you one of those people who doesn’t stalk your date first so you can walk in with an open mind? If so, fucking why? Do you WANT to be murdered?!

XOXO,
J