You may not have realised, however, that BRO is also the name of a new social app just for men. It also appears a lot like a hook-up app.
So is it a place for straight, manly men to date other straight, manly men? On further investigation, I think it might be a bit more nuanced than that. First of all, the 'about me' section is pretty straightforward, except there is one interesting section in there I went for 'casual bro', because that one seemed to require the least thought. One part of that may include straight men dating one another, but that was not the sole purpose. You see faces. Some of our users may be the same people on Grindr, but people behave differently in different spaces. But is it hard to move away from labels completely?
I mean, in the app, you choose what 'type' of bro you are — from 'jock' to 'fabulous'. How do you cater for all types of people when some may fall through the cracks between different 'types'? Do you think that the design and the marketing may look a bit, well, straight though? I disagree. For me, this is supposed to be a safe space for men to meet up and make meaningful relationships. If this app is the thing that someone needs to open up about themselves, then great.
- Jilly Cooper: married men are having gay affairs because they're 'terrified of women'.
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- Is BRO a dating app for straight men to meet straight men? - BBC Three.
We built up 32, Facebook fans before launch. Then, there were a few articles, like one in Queerty, which made the app into a place for straight men looking for other straight men to get oral sex in secret. There you go then.
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Most of the people I chatted to on there said that they identified as gay. People have called it an app for straight men because of the design, the logo, the name, the fact that interactions include 'fist-bumps'. But maybe that kind of behaviour doesn't have to be restricted to the 'straight' male community.
After all, isn't that, in itself, just conforming to another socially-constructed idea of gender and sexuality? This app has caused loads of media speculation because, in some ways, it all seems so confusing.
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People have taken it as an app for confused people. Maybe we're just thinking about it too much though. Maybe it's all pretty straightforward. Like BRO's mission statement puts it, a place, "for men that are interested in meeting other men… as simple as that". Two years ago, another guy who was my age was put on the night shift.
To pass time, we made small talk and gossiped about people in the building. One weekend around 2 or 3 in the morning, we were super bored and started talking about our hookup experiences. We ended up swapping head in a utility room. When summer was over, he got transferred to another building. When I was in college, I played football. Not that I was anything to talk about because I mostly sat on the bench.
But there was a first-string dude that I was buddies with where things used to happen. It was never like we planned it or anything. One time, he showed up to shoot the shit — you know, like to hang out. I remember telling him my shoulder was messed up from a bad play and he offered to massage it to relax the muscle. After that, the rest is history. We ended up messing around. Over the course of a year, it happened a few times.
The dude is married now and so am I. When I was back in high school, I dated this girl from my neighborhood. She had a brother who was the same age as me and we became friends. One time while we were hanging out, he shared with me that he was bi. He asked me if I had ever been with another guy and I told him the truth — never. I guess there was a part of me that was curious. The weird thing is the girl and I never messed around — not even once. Back then, I think I was just figuring things out and he was somebody to do that with.
When I was 19 years old, I worked at a hotel as a bellman. Frequently, male guests had me bring up their luggage. At least five times I ended up staying a little extra. It was always for a big tip. When I was 19, I used to play ball in our neighborhood league. There was this one guy I used to get with after practice.
Is BRO a dating app for straight men to meet straight men?
It just sort of happened. The weird thing is we never talked about it. We were both curious I guess. I never really did something with another guy, but I did use to watch two dudes I served with [in the military] mess around in the woods. They always thought they were being private, but I would see them doing things a lot.
The fact that I watched tells you something. Inside the Colorful World of Urine.