A Smartphone App That Objectifies Men Benefits No One
A new smartphone app has taken a hit with social media users and a stab at the fight for gender equality.
This time, the offenders are female.
Lulu is an app that syncs to a user’s Facebook account to gather information about that person’s male friends. As more and more users sync their accounts, Lulu develops a network—resulting in a ton of public profiles that can be viewed by app users. Users then rank these men on looks, dating qualities, and overall character. They answer different questions that result in a formulaic score of 1-10.
Yes, women are ranking men on a numeric system—you know, the one that is stereotypically used by men toward women.
The ladies have flipped the script, but in no way is it feminist.
It is obviously targeted to female users because there is no room for same-sex answers to questions—the questions and possible responses only apply to male-female relationships. This is another problem within itself, because it implies that heterosexual sex is not only the norm, but also the only option.
However, this is not the issue at hand.
This is objectification of one sex from another. The worst part is that the men featured on the app are not notified or asked for access to their general information or photos.
That’s right, the guys (most of them anyway) have no idea that their image, along with anonymous comments on their looks, personality, and sexual performance, is plastered all over millions of users’ phones.
Now, you know that if this app directed the objectification toward women, there’d be riots.
Women: this is not okay. This app is not allowing women to prove to society that we are all equal human beings and deserve fair treatment. No, it’s only showing that ignorance and backward thinking is among us, too. And it’s just embarrassing.
How can we stand for gender equality and cooperation among both men and women? How can we teach that no one deserves to be sexualized or judged by their looks and sexuality? How can we improve the general relationship between men and women?
Not by downloading Lulu.
News flash: objectifying men only creates the illusion that it’s okay to objectify women.
And guess what? It’s not okay to objectify anyone, ever.
Written by Angela Schifani
March 10, 2014
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