Perhaps you’ve heard of the notorious dating app Bang With Friends. Yeah, it’s that one that lets you pick Facebook friends you wanna do the dirty with, and if said friends picked you too, the app will pair you up for the deed. Since its launch earlier this year, the identities of the co-founders have remained a mystery. Every correspondence we’ve ever had with Bang With Friends came through an anonymous developer who went by “C,” and little has been made public about the guys behind the app.
That is, until Internet Week New York came around.
At the Webutante Ball, an Internet Week-sponsored nerd prom if you will, the two Bang With Friends co-founders were nominated as Webutante King. That’s when Colin Hodge and Omri Mor‘s names were accidentally released as part of the online ballot. “We’re not so much upset – disappointed is a better word,” Hodge, the 28-year-old software developer, tells us. “We had planned on doing it other ways and we were able to keep it secret for a while. So to have it leak out like that is not how we envisioned it.”
The idea for Bang With Friends came after Hodge’s initial project: A dating site called HeardAboutYou. The service shares the same mentality as BWF in the belief that successful couples often meet via people they know, so Hodge linked up with Mor to simplify the idea into a Facebook app.
So, what’s with all the clandestine app releasing?
“The first day that we launched it, we got 10,000 sign ups and we realized this was going to be huge,” he says. “We made the decision to not let people focus on us personally and instead on the product. I’m really happy we did this because now we’re over a million users and we have more stability.”
Hodge and Mor’s identities may be been unveiled prematurely, but now they’re taking the opportunity to continue promoting hyper-local iterations of the app. Just like the duo did at South by Southwest, they’re planning to launch an Internet Week-inspired Bang With NYC along with an opening party downtown. The event will allow fans, horny singles, or curious users to meet and hang out with the co-founders, and of course, perhaps snag a one night stand. Hodge is all business. At the Webutante Ball, he was more than willing to promote BWF while silent partner Mor roamed the party, providing no interviews but instead commentary on the club’s music.
Bitch Don’t Kill My Vibe trance remix… My oh my music is evolving fast
— Omri Mor (@omri_mor) May 24, 2013
“Coming out of anonymity doesn’t change our product vision. This allowed us to meet people that we wanted to, but overall we still want to offer the most honest way to meet somebody,” Hodge says. In person, he doesn’t come off like some wannabe pimp or pornographer. The software developer genuinely wants to hook people up and if long term dating results from the bang, then everyone wins.
Still, no matter how Hodge puts it, Bang With Friends can still be awkward or feel unnatural. Is telling your Facebook friends you’d be down to hit that via an anonymous app really as organic as the hit-and-miss luck in “real world” dating?
“I think a lot of our generation’s already dating online, we’re just giving them a better tool to do it,” Hodge reasons. “When there’s context around this person or it’s somebody you know already, then it feels safer meeting them.”
The Internet’s developed a solid reputation for solving the world’s problems; if nothing else, Hodge and Mor have used it to solve another one.