Declaring your relationship on Facebook used to be enough to solidify your online bond with a partner.
Now, couples are forced to navigate the murky waters of Twitter faves, Snapchat streaks, twinstagramming, subgramming, going Instagram official, and more.
While it’s long been expected that good romantic partners will dutifully like and comment on their other half’s best selfies, it’s no longer acceptable to simply throw digital hearts on your partner’s Instagram posts. You must also Story Watch.
Before Snapchat introduced its Stories feature, a personal feed of photos and videos that last for only 24 hours, some partners would white-lie their way through a relationship.
Sure, honey, I saw that great tweet you did. Or, Oh, sorry I just haven’t been on Instagram all day!
But with Snapchat and Instagram Stories there’s now a clear record of exactly who watched your content and when they did it. Instagram even recently rolled out statuses via Instagram Direct, so you can also see exactly when your partner last opened the app.
These feature changes have led to enhanced expectations around content consumption. It’s now understood by many couples that, to be a truly engaged partner, you need to regularly consume your partner’s content, and most importantly, watch their Stories.
As Alana Levinson wrote in Splinter, “A love interest consuming your content is now as perfunctory as opening a door for a woman once was.”
If you really cared about me, the theory goes, you’d care about what I’m up to. Ergo, watch my Stories.