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Don't hook up with the Lulu dating app

OPINION

May 15, 2013|By Doris Dadayan, @dorisdadayan | For RedEye

I have a shameful confession to make (and, uh, this is just the first of many): I downloaded the Lulu dating app to see what this new form of cyberstalking is all about. Ah, rating men like they're restaurants on Yelp. Fun!

I mean, sure I've rated guys before. One of them works for T-Mobile, and he replaces my phone every time I crack the screen. It's the least he can do for a good customer service rating, right?

Oh, but Lulu is a totally different way of rating men. According to the website, the app is "the smart girls' app," and when a guy tries to log in, a message pops up on the screen saying, "Dude, you're a dude!" In case there was any confusion.

Lulu uses men's Facebook pages to create a profile and invites users to compile info on everything about the guy. You just plug the name of a guy into the Lulu app to see what your (totally anonymous) virtual girlfriends have to say based on his looks, manners and spending habits, for example, and assign hashtags such as #SexualPanther or #NapoleonComplex. Yes, I need to know that my former co-worker is #Manscaped but a #CommitmentPhobe who #SmellsAmazeballs and is #KinkyInTheRightWays yet #HighlyMedicated.

Men reviewed have little access to reply due to being locked out of the app, even though there is a limited accompanying app that lets them edit their basic profile. So, what's a guy to do? Be less #ObsessedWithMom and get a better rating? Should #DudeCantCook take a few culinary lessons to get bumped up? Is there no hope for #FunnyAsAFuneral guy?

On iTunes, the app has a four-star rating, but negative customer reviews from men include, "I'm a faithful man to my girlfriend and it is an obvious violation of my privacy if any random anonymous person can go on this ridiculous site and slander me and lie about me."

Yep, Lulu is poor use of social media tech. It's a paradise for anyone who enjoys trashing former boyfriends, especially since reviews are anonymous and there's no accountability. Sure, we've all done the Facebook stalking thing, but Lulu isn't going to make dating someone any easier.

Yeah, we've all been hurt, want justice and wish for the person who did it to get hurt 10 times worse than he hurt you. But publicly shaming someone, calling him a jerk and potentially weakening his chances of dating other women is not going to open the door to good relationships or empower you. Carrying around all that negative energy and resentment does nothing for a person.

So, where's the logic in this app? If a guy is so great, then why would someone rate him on a meat-market app so someone else could snag him?

Apparently not everything is so smart on our smartphones. Oh, Lulu, you shallow app. Even the #HygenicallyChallenged, #NoseHair, #NoGoals dude who has #PerfectGrammar deserves a new start.

Doris Dadayan is a RedEye special contributor.

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