The continuing saga of being a woman on the internet

Sunday, August 19, 2007

I haven’t been posting my Skype Scumbags recently, but one popped up today that really pissed me off. I was working away and a Skype request to share details (that is, add to my friends list) came in from a “nick desanctis”.

My Skype profile clearly states “Please be specific in your contact requests. I do not accept blind contacts, especially from idiots who think that because my profile says ‘female’, it means ‘skype me'”, but I meet a lot of people in business and don’t remember all the names, so I always check the person’s profile to see if they might be someone that I’ve met rather than a garden-variety stalker. This guy was from Montreal, where I visited a few weeks ago on business, and it was a vanilla “please share your details with me” request, so I sent him a message:

[7:02:50 PM] Sandy says: do i know you? i use skype primarily for business and do not welcome unsolicited personal invitations

As soon as he responded, I realized that he was just another Skype stalker, the likes of which I see at least once a week, sometimes several times in one day:

[7:07:10 PM] nick desanctis says: hi
[7:07:43 PM] nick desanctis says: you don’t want to talk to me
[7:08:14 PM] nick desanctis says: do you have hotmail
[7:10:05 PM] nick desanctis says: so why did you talk to me

Skype stalker

The thing that really pissed me off was his last line (“so why did you talk to me”) because it implies that because I responded to a blind invitation that could have been a valid business connection, I’m somehow “asking for it”. This is right up there with guys who think that women are asking to be sexually assaulted because they wear a short skirt or walk on the street alone at night.

I’m not the only one who gets these; a female friend of mine who says that she tends to see invitations from the “spiritual weirdos” recently received the following invitation on Skype:

Feel free to connect with me via email or [phone number] and/or via “heart subspace” (too late to unconnect there – I am already locked-on to your heart I am afraid).

“Heart subspace”??!! I don’t know whether to laugh or barf.

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