Twenty-somethings have seen the end of courtship, romping around in this age of so-called “hookup culture” instead. Students don’t refute the claim, admitting that here in the Hub dating is “pointless,” hence why they resort to mating instead. So, when controversial Facebook app Bang With Friends announced they have facilitated as many as 100,000 hookups in mere weeks, the news came as no surprise.
Coded by a slew of students over the course of a weekend, the app pulls from a user’s pool of synced-in, social media savvy friends and, with a simple click of a button, allows them to set up sexual encounters. Bang With Friends has capitalized on three words–“Down to Bang”–and if both parties share that sentiment, they will be alerted to coordinate their tryst.
A Bang With Friends developer, who goes simply by “C,” told Fast Company the team thinks “this is a much more realistic way of how the younger generation is working.” C also acknowledged the app’s shortcoming, however, admitting that “once users have created their bang list, most people have no more use for the app.”
The group is now adding on features, with the biggest being “a Klout score for your weekly sexiness,” which will give users the chance to see how many pageviews they’re drawing in and what photos people are actually clicking on. Scores are sharable, if users opt in to put them out on display, and are an integral part of Bang With Friends’ larger ploy.
Students will soon be encouraged to hang before they bang. Soon, users will see a “Down to Hang” button alongside the “Down to Bang” button. Although the move sounds one step in the opposite direction of college students’ “reality,” C assured Fast Company, “We’re definitely not getting rid of the bang part. We’re not at all ashamed of that.” They’re just trying to expand their use case.
The move is a smart one. The app will start to attract a new breed of users who view conversation as foreplay and prefer being wined and dined before being tossed around in the bedroom. Just because a more conservative choice is available doesn’t mean it will lead solely to more inhibited decisions down the road.
The only downside is students don’t even know how to date, at least according to Boston University Professor Donna Freitas, who claims “young people today don’t know how to get out of hookup culture.” And, of course, apps like Bang With Friends don’t help.
Neither does Lulu, the iPhone app thousands of female college students have flocked to, to anonymously rate the men on campus. Or fellow app Tinder, that reduces users to one basic question: “Hot or Not?”
Tie those in with Bang With Friends, however, and maybe you have a dating site guaranteed to cover every base. You can make an attractive, new acquaintance on Tinder, opt to hang through Bang With Friends, but scope the hottie out on Lulu to discover if he’s actually any good at hooking up before finally following through.
Or, you could just strut into a bar like the digitally declined do and meet someone the old-fashioned way. Maybe even say, “Hello.”
No, that sounds scary. Go back to your smartphone.