By ROB BROOKS
I’m intrigued. And horrified. And curious. And incredulous.
Think I might go back to Scrabble.
According to Cosmo:
The way it works is you sign into the website using your Facebook profile, and then you anonymously register interest in, erm, banging your contacts. You actually click a button called “down to bang” for the guys you’re digging – slightly creepy, but hey, it’s better than a wall post expressing your intentions. If the guy(s) you pick haven’t pushed the button for you too, thus aren’t interested, then your crush remains a secret. But, if you did make their cut, then you are both made aware, in fact the “down to bang” button will change to “awaiting bang”…yep, there’s no skirting around the issue here.
I’m sure the delectable balance of intrigue and horror will propel many a media story about this new app and let slip an avalanche of moralising. I don’t really want to moralise here myself. All the important stuff can still be boiled down to two words:
The way people find each other for romance and for sex has been changing ever since there first were people. The pace of change accelerates steadily, as economies and social institutions and communication technologies change. And the self-appointed gatekeepers of sex have exploded in “moral” outrage at every step along the way.
I don’t think of myself as old, but the world of sex and relationships that young people today seem to inhabit is not a world I recognise.
Mobile phones, and the internet have revolutionised the business of finding one another and establishing both interest and rapport. At the risk of revealing my inner creep, I certainly wish there had been more of this stuff around when I was younger.
But one of my main research interests is sex, and especially the different interests that often generate conflict. This conflict simmers even between consenting adults who use protection and like each other – both in Facebookland and in real life (which I am told I can abbreviate IRL). And any device that changes the mating market can be used to tilt the balance in favour of one party over another.
Hell, why did these “university aged men” invent Bang with Friends other than to get more roots? And why, for that matter, did Zuckerberg (and accomplices) invent Facebook?