Last week I downloaded Fling, the latest social media craze. The app that describes itself as ‘as exciting way to share life’s moments’ allows you to send photos, short videos and messages (otherwise known as ‘Flings’) to up to 50 complete strangers anywhere in the world. I was instantly hooked. The whole world? Imagine all the things you could see! With all those strangers there- think about everything you could learn! I could get daily updates on the weather in Cambodia or see the Hanging Gardens of Babylon without moving from the sofa or even find a French tutor- imagine that! Me speaking French, all because I downloaded Snapchat’s cousin. How have I only just heard about this INCREDIBLE idea?
hahahahahahahaha how naïve the mind can be.
After the initial hour of feeling shocked/horrified/traumatised at the kind of Flings I was receiving, it became very apparent I wouldn’t be learning French anytime soon, but through characteristically British perseverance skills (and the desperation to have an equally interesting as topical first blog post) I stuck around for 24 hours. Starting at 9am, I recorded every single Fling I received in order to fairly evaluate whether this harmless idea had become a shipwreck of sexual tension, a hotspot for paedophilia and ultimately a graveyard of dignity or if I had just got off to a shaky start. I was sent 237 Flings that day- which seems like a hell of a lot when you compare it to how many Twitter or Snapchat notifications you’d usually get in the same time frame- and this is how they broke down:
71x Selfies (including 4x people in bed, 3x women without makeup and one commenting on the weather in England)
7x Photos of pets
6x Instagram promos
1x Discussion about Vladimir Nabokov
34x Chat requests (5x specifically men only, 6x women only- the other 23 I’m guessing weren’t fussed)
4x People singing (with Meghan Trainor dominating song choice)
10x Requests for selfies
3x People peeing. Seriously. PEOPLE PEEING.
And you know what, I’d see stats like that and think- barring the unsightly urinationS- it seems like harmless fun. But then that doesn’t include the
34x Originally titled ‘Sexflings’ (messages such as: ‘Who wants to see boobs?’ ‘Anyone feel adventurous?’ and ‘Who’s in bed…’)
6x References to penis size
11x Nude trades (‘I’ll send you this if you send me that’ kinda thing)
4x Shirtless men
1x Fifty Shades re-enactment
and well…just a whole lot of other sexual things. Maybe the most surprising being the amount of requests for boobs- like are they really that great that you have to name your account after them? (iCum4T1ts was a personal fave)- as well as the volume of people asking for selfies and offering ‘rewards’ for the best ones. One account summed it up rather abruptly when it specifically asked for ‘boobs no faces’. And maybe the most important question: WHY ARE YOU SENDING ME PICTURES OF YOU WEEING??
So, I guess my only conclusion could be, Fling you are a truly wonderful idea and I’m sure I could learn an awful lot from those signed up if I wasn’t paranoid that everyone talking to me was purely doing so to see me naked. Whilst on the app I spent a majority of my time wanting everyone to just chill, take a break from all this sexiness and go and do whatever kids do (like finger painting or something). But in the meantime, and with a light heart, I may limit my usage to discussing book recommendations and asking for translations (I’m sure someone can help me with my German oral…oh no…)
Share your own Fling stories below!