Straight people crave casual sex too, or so the thinking goes. So there are now a handful of apps for that.
Following the success of Grindr, many companies have tried to re-create a Grindr-style cruising experience for the hetero's smartphone. This year alone, mobile and social apps such as Tinder, Swoon, Blendr and Bang With Friends have busted onto the scene. And later this fall, Apple Store approval pending, the new app Pure promises an even quicker way for people of all sexual orientations to get some.
All these apps work under the same simple premise: you get shown a random photo of a nearby stranger and then you decide whether you want to sleep with the person behind the photo. If that person has similar inclinations, the apps make an introduction and you take it from there.
Pure co-founders Roman Sidorenko and Alexander Kukhtenko created their app out of frustration with the "time-consuming" act of dating, even in its hyper-speed online format. That's right, these gentlemen were too impatient to court someone properly.
And while all these new apps purport to be equally effective tools for same-sex dating, they're not. Even though I indicated that I was a male interested in males, using Tinder was like stalking all the straight sorority girls who were mean to me in college. Similarly, Bang With Friends curated a list of all my male friends, but it didn't weed out the straight ones from the gay ones. For these entrepreneurs, same-sex dating appears to be a box to be checked off but not a user experience they care to invest in.
It's not surprising that Pure, Tinder and Bang With Friends were all created by straight men.
As for women, these apps leave half of their target demographic out of the picture, unlike Grindr, which has a vanguard "by gays, for gays" appeal about it. Before sleeping with a stranger, most women need to know more than simply whether he's photogenic.
For instance, Pure claims to be a "safe" way to hook up, but it makes no effort to prove it. Further alienating women and their needs, co-founder Sidorenko tried defending Pure's "give a stranger a chance" message by bringing up domestic abuse. "Historically, females have been most often victimized by someone they knew," he told the Huffington Post.
So there you have it, women: go through life sleeping with anonymous men and never connect with any of them beyond a superficial, sexual level because if you do, one day they will just turn around and hit you.
That's the reason Pure, Tinder, Bang With Friends and their ilk are all programmed to fail. Built by men whose brains seem to only process two basic functions at a time — hot or not, want and get — these new apps rely on simplicity when sex is anything but. It doesn't take a genius to figure that out. All it would have taken is a woman.Oscar Raymundo is the head of marketing at a leading LGBT media company. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.