The Boys On Henderson Island

>> Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The boyfriend and I both own an iPod Touch and being gay men, particularly nosy ones, we do have the Grindr app installed. For the few that aren't gay or haven't heard about Grindr, Grindr is an application that is used to detect other Grindr users sorted by distance. In nowhere does it mention that every Grindr users have to be gay, but it's understood that the primary function of this app is for gay people to seek out other gay people for the purpose of cruising, for sex.

In truth comparing to all the other gay cruising sites, Grindr is already quite demurred. There's practically no nudity involved, mostly you'll see someone in their undies or a naked headless torso featuring the user's head and abs. Two weeks ago, Apple started to clean up their act and now you can't even show pictures wearing only your undies in your profile. No foul or suggestive languages are allowed, it became most PG-13. In fact I was shocked when I first signed in on it to see the lack of functions and pornographic values. I have to say it is fun to see how many gay people are around me and how they look like since being gay is not necessarily an obvious quality, but as you see the people around you are the same every single time the fun of the application wanes.

Over the weekend, the boyfriend told me a new way to play with Grindr. The boyfriend being an Asiaphile, has discovered that a bunch of people would turn off their Location Services in their settings and their location will default to a tiny island in the South Pacific called Henderson Island. You will then find a lot of Grindr users at the same location, most of them Asian from Japan or Taiwan and such. I wonder if these Grindr users are there because they are closeted or too embarrassed to show themselves in their home location, or maybe they are just bored with seeing the same people over and over again and started to use the application as an international chat room. I'm sure there is an interesting sociology paper somewhere in this waiting to be written, and if I were in college taking the course maybe I'll venture on putting a stab in it.

Speaking on Henderson Island, I have no clue why the default location of iPods would be there. The only reason I could think of is that you wouldn't mistaken it as your current location. Henderson Island is one of the Pitcairn Islands located in the South Pacific Ocean somewhere between New Zealand and the coast of Chile, and it's one of the World Heritage Sites designated by United Nations for its uninhabited and virtually untouched by humans. If you see your map showed that you're there, you know that your iPod has made a mistake. I mean, the island does not even have any kinds of wireless access or any buildings for that matter. Once a year, people from Pitcairn Island (the only inhabited island of the Pitcairn Islands) will travel there by boat and harvest some wood, but that's the only human influence to the ground. Some might think that this might be paradise, but a paradise without internet access? I don't know about that.

Oh and Happy Cannabis Day!

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