Online Romance in the 21st Century: Deceptive Online Dating, Catfishing, Romance Scams, and “Mail Order” Marriages

Faculty Publications
  •  Renee D. Lamphere, The University of North Carolina at Pembroke
  •  Kweilin T. Lucas, Mars Hill University


The rapid advancement of technology has changed the dating world for millions of people. While dating scams are not a new phenomenon to the online dating community, a new form of scam known as “catfishing” is also taking place. Catfishing is the verb used to describe the actions of a “catfish,” a person who creates falsified online profiles on social networking sites with the purpose of fraudulently seducing someone else. In addition to talking about online dating scams and catfishing, this chapter will also examine “mail order” marriages and the potential impact of this practice.