Is This App Stupid–or Just Pathetic? Both, Probably.

Beankind is "a new app intended to create an 'emotive social experiment' by getting the world to share some love... After downloading the app, you simply tap the illustrated heart designed by Hambley" whose cartoons and stickers are popular on Instagram. "The tapping generates 'haptic' feedback, meaning you can feel a vibration when you tap on your phone."

"The more things took a turn for the worse in day-to-day life, the more we felt the need to make a game focused on connection and making small contributions of positivity," say the app's creators. Well, that's a nice thought, and lots of people are responding to it and doubtless getting tiny little frissons of neurological response, serotonin and dopamine spurts, which is just coincidentally...addictive. And people once more turn to little figures on the screen, little spurts and blurts online, in place of real human contact. It's pathetic. And it makes things only worse--people will waste more time in this app when what they need is face to face in-person contact. It just makes people lonelier in the long run.

A buzzing feeling in your hand is not human contact. Also, the impulse to 'spread love' this way, by tapping, can hardly be called sincere. It's a tap. It's not making a phone call and cheering your mom up, it's not visiting the sick in the hospital, it's not even writing a friendly email. It's not donating to someone desperate. It's not volunteer work. It's not voting or even sharing a hopeful new development in the news.

It's just a pathetically fake meaningless click. Stupid to think it's anything else.

But it is something else: bathetic, as well as pathetic, and mawkish.