Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Now a Facebook app that lets you... well BandWithFriends!!

Before it even dropped its “The” prefix, Facebook was a dating site. It could never have been anything else: It was targeting college kids, it encouraged you to not only upload but tag photos, and lead to us spending more hours than we care to admit clicking through picture after picture after picture after picture. If you were bold enough, this turned into a friend request – bolder yet, a Wall Post, or even a message. And so on and so forth… whatever that “so forth” turned out to be (you sly dog, you).

It’s not like it was all that subtle, but we’re leaving behind any trace of coyness considering the blatancy of BangWithFriends, the just-launched, insanely-popular new Facebook app. The fairly unsophisticated app launched last week and seemed to be little more than fodder for a slow news day – at least, that’s what it was for us a couple weeks ago (photo proof below). But according to the developers, who remain anonymous, it’s getting real results.

The creators of BangWithFriends are grad students, who describe themselves as “badass dudes happy to play wingman to over 10,000 couples and counting now,” created the app as a more honest approach to the dating and hookup Facebook game (they’ve created other apps but wouldn’t release details as to remain anonymous – all I can find is that the site’s server is located in Ashburn, Virginia). In case curiosity hasn’t compelled you to install and try out the app for yourself, here’s how it works.

First, you install. Exercise caution in granting permissions and making information viewable.
Then, you’re launched into the app, where if you’re a lady, you’ll see all your male friends, and vice versa. Simply choose who you want to bang (I'm being dumb enough to use my account to act as guinea pig).
If that person also installs the app and picks you, you’re both notified of the mutual interest with this email:
The app was built in 72 hours, and Doe says there’s been no comment from LinkedIn on the use of its API. “In our opinion a network such as LinkedIn might be a good place to look when trying to hook up with someone. After all, you spend most of your time at work, so chances are finding someone to hook up with based on your LinkedIn profile might be a good start.”

BangWithProfessionals functions the same way BangWithFriends does: Install, select who you’d like to bang, once they do the same, you’re alerted. Across the pond, Would Love 2 was just launched for iOS, although it’s a bit tamer and simply wants to find you someone to date – whether or not you bang is entirely in your hands.

All of these apps come with privacy problems. A simple Graph Search revealed who’s using BangWithFriends, and while seeing what LinkedIn-based apps someone is using isn’t all that easy, you will absolutely find yourself in an awkward situation if you install it “just to see” and then have to explain to your co-worker you don’t actually want to hook up with them. There are an endless amount of really uncomfortable ways this could go.

The biggest issue of course is people using BangWithFriends (or Professionals for that matter) with ill intentions, either just to see what the app does or, more underhandedly, to find out which of your friends wants to bang you. “My only concern is girls who install and add all their guy friends just to find out who’s perving on them,” one Redditor responded, adding that men are equally capable of the same thing.

Clearly it’s too soon to tell, but early reaction seems to be that the lowest common denominator may actually be a fairly effective way to find Internet love (or lovin’).

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