It's happened once or twice.
A guy you met through your preferred dating app seems promising. You exchange a few messages, each response wittier than the last. And just when you think he has so much potential, he sends you an unsolicited dick pic that changes the game for you...but not in a good way 'cause really, when was the last time you looked at a photo of what appears to be a wall of flesh and liked it?
Also, what is expected of you at this point? Are you supposed to clutch your chest and think, "I gotta have him"?
In 2018, a survey was conducted involving 1,000 straight, male participants between the ages of 17 and 65. The men were asked if they've ever sent an unsolicited dick pic as well as other questions to determine how narcissistic or sexist they were and what their porn habits were like.
48 percent of the respondents said they've sent dick pics people didn't ask for at some point in their lives. Most of these guys were white, married or in a serious relationship, and college-educated; the average age was 31 years old.
Dr. Cory Pedersen, who led the study, told Vice, "Men who had reported having sent unsolicited dick pics showed higher levels of narcissism relative to men who had never sent such images. They also demonstrated higher levels of both hostile (overtly negative views of women) and benevolent (woman-on-a-pedestal) sexism."
Perhaps the only surprising finding in this study was that there was no difference in the extent of porn consumed or frequency of masturbation between men who've sent dick pics and those who haven't.
So why do some men send nudes out of nowhere?
Guys think that if they send you a dick pic, there's a good chance you'll reciprocate with your own nudes. A give-and-take setup, if you will. But the more shocking reason of why they do this is because, apparently, they really believe it's a perfectly acceptable flirting move: "They believe sending dick pics is an appropriate form of flirting with someone, this is how you let someone know that you're interested in them, that you're attracted to them. That you want to have a connection with them," according to Dr. Pedersen.
Now, you're probably wondering, "Why do men keep doing it? Does this really work on anybody?"
We have the human brain to blame for this one. Dr. Pedersen says that one positive response is enough for a behavior to continue—yes, even if several other recipients are disgusted by this move: "Humans are prone to pay attention to things we already believe to be true, and to ignore things that disabuse us of our ideas. If we get one positive endorsement we think, 'Hey, this is working!' We ignore all of the women who reply with, 'You're gross.'"
It's important to note that these findings can't be applied to the general public since the data was self-reported.