“If you’ve gone out a number of times and want to cool it, you try to not watch their Stories or engage too much,” said Alden, a 32-year-old based in Boston.“If I’m even semi texting a guy, I will basically stop interacting with his socials because I don’t want to make him cocky,” said Molly.But writing off the subtle implications of certain user behavior ignores the weight those actions carry for a growing number of people.

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.

“Like, you post pictures with them but their profile on Instagram is empty and they never watch your Story.”Other men and women said they don’t use Instagram Stories for a variety of reasons.

Those who haven’t found it to be a major issue say they’ve been open and honest about their usage patterns with partners or they’re in a relationship with someone who also isn’t a heavy user.

“I’ve never been in this situation, but I think if I were dating someone who was as into social media as me and they didn’t rabidly consume all of my content, I would definitely be pissed,” said Molly in New York.

Most partners will begin watching each other’s Stories in the courtship phase of the relationship.

Not consuming someone’s Instagram Story, for instance, can be a way to digitally pull back or reset the dynamic in a relationship. said she’s currently dating a man who ignores her content regularly despite being “extremely online.”“It makes me feel like garbage,” she said.

It’s the Instagram equivalent of waiting three days to text back. “In our current dating age, it seems insane to play with someone like that just for the power dynamic.”Yet so many women and men do.

Since Story watching can carry a heavy, if subtle, weight, the new rules are rife with confusion.

After posting about this trend on Facebook, one friend was mortified that he might have inadvertently been flirting by watching his friend’s Stories.

Whether done consciously or unconsciously, it sends the message that you’re interested in what your significant other is thinking and doing.