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Tuesday, September 16, 2014 | Last updated: 12:28am

Lulu app might prevent men from getting the chance they deserve



Men: We’re being called out. If you’ve slighted any of the fairer sex on your quest for carnal domination of any form, you’re probably now on Lulu, and your reviews and “profile” may not be as squeaky-clean as you’d like.

Lulu is an iPhone and Android app that allows women to rank men based on performance, commitment, ambition and a variety of factors that make up a profile, replete with information culled from Facebook. It’s an open platform that takes cues from Yelp and applies them to men, with ratings and attributes changing as more women complete reviews on a man’s profile. The best attributes on a profile are hashtagged, allowing users to click on that trait and see more men like him. And no, guys, this is a girl’s game only: In order to fully use Lulu, you must be denoted as female via your Facebook profile.

Essentially, Lulu ruins the notion of a first impression. Give a girl your first and last name upon introduction, and within seconds she can see the best and worst traits you’ve got to offer. For some of us, this is a double-edged sword.

Girls, your new friend at the bar may always pay for drinks and dinner, but he’s got a habit of being gone by morning. He may be a “giver,” but he’s not as well-endowed as you may have hoped.

If you’re not shaking in your boots now, guys, you very well should be. While there’s not a lot you can do to change your past, Lulu says its mission is to “encourage good, gentlemanly behavior.” If that’s a path in life you want to take, then good on you. Should you decide to continue your all-American, red-blooded male ways, then that’s just fine too, because the concept of Lulu is as blatantly one-sided as it comes. Here’s the clincher: Free-form reviews, independent from attributes and scores, allow vindictive ex-girlfriends to go to town on your reputation for anyone to see.

Should there ever be a “by men, for men, about women” rebuttal to Lulu, it would be protested against with extreme force. The most obvious angle to a male-oriented Lulu would be misogynistic, with not nearly enough positivity to quell the screaming female masses. Rather, we men already talk about potential hookups, or are so old-fashioned as to hope that good conversation and charm will get us as far as the cab ride back to your place.

Lulu now gives girls the home-field advantage. Knowing who guys are before you even really get to know them seems like little more than an invasion of privacy in which men have no chance to redeem themselves. Maybe there was a wronged woman in his past, whom he bailed on in the middle of the night, but Lulu users have no way of confirming such evidence. Besides, he may have actually changed his ways. Without delving into the eternal social media debate, it’s easy to see the pitfalls that Lulu has opened up in the ever-evolving field of courtship. Should Lulu ever find its male contemporary, women would feel nothing but objectified, but Lulu itself isn’t any better as it does just that. Put the phone away and take a shot — just talk to that cute guy at the bar. His Lulu profile could tell you about his past, but gives little assurance that he’s the same guy making you laugh over cocktails.


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