Many of you may have noticed an upsurge of comic strips on your Facebook News Feed from, well, zero to… a lot. But the unique part of these strips is that the characters look very similar to your actual friends.
Well, this is no coincidence. Bitstrips, an app that has been downloaded 11 million times since its launch last December, has become even more popular since its new iPhone and Android updates were released in recent weeks.
I don’t own the app myself, but I get the point. It allows you to construct your own version of you, by picking your body type, hairstyle, clothes, among other things, and then placing your comic-self in a humorous context, complete with a caption.
It’s actually a very conducive app for people who are funny. If you have a good sense of humor, then that’s three opportunities for you display it.
And in the last couple of weeks, I’ll admit that I have enjoyed some of these comic strips. Their harmless, campy, uncontroversial, and it’s funny to see people’s interpretations of themselves via an illustration.
But here’s the problem: I know people. And people are not funny.
We all have one or two friends who are truly hilarious, and who, if they probably wanted to, could maybe pursue a career in comedy and possibly gain a following. Those people are funny. Other people — your friends who are teachers, accountants, paralegals — are not funny.
So despite the massive potential that Bitstrips has for humor, we all know where this is going. It’s only a matter of time before all the unfunny people of the world begin to abuse it, and make us decry that this app was ever conceived.
But that hasn’t happened yet, because it’s so new. And that’s why I am imploring everybody in the world to just stop right now. By eliminating this app from society, we wouldn’t be missing anything because most of us never knew it existed until this month. And we’d be saving ourselves from the inevitable shitshow that’s going to ensue.
In fact, I’ve already noticed a worrying trend. I’ve seen a couple of people who are using the app to convey the mood that they are in. As in, “Jacob is upset,” or, “Dana is angry.” They’re basically treating it like a new-age emoticon.
Again, it bears repeating that we will benefit from this app — because funny people will utilize it correctly and create illustrations that make us laugh. But for every one of those, there are going to be 10 more that make us shake our head. Let’s avoid that.
I’m just looking out for the greater good. Because the only thing that’s worse than annoying Facebook trends is the public reaction to annoying Facebook trends. It’s a lose-lose situation for all of us.
So let’s get it all out of our system now. Make your comics while they’re still fun and welcoming. But by the end of the week, I really hope the only strip I see is in a dimly lit room surrounded by velvet chairs, cigarette smoke and overpriced liquor.