We’ve all been there. You’ve finished work and you’ve got Office Face (the shiny, knackered skin and smudged eye liner from eight hours spent in an air-conditioned building). You haul yourself onto the train and who’s sitting in your carriage? Your ex. Of course he is.
If only you had Cloak, the new ‘anti-social’ app that helps you avoid awkward encounters with exes, frenemies and the colleague who’s totally lovely but, y’know, you wanted to read your book not make small talk. Cloak uses data from Instagram and Foursquare to determine the locations of people you know – you can even choose to receive an alert when a certain person is nearby. Half a mile is the default radius but you can customise it so that you know when someone is further or closer – allowing you to make a handy diversion into Topshop.
So is this the beginning of a new trend for incognito social media? Buzzfeed’s creative director, Chris Baker, certainly thinks so. “Personally, I think we’ve seen the crest of the big social network,” he told the Washington Post. “Things like Twitter and Facebook are packed elevators where we’re all crammed in together... I think anti-social stuff is on the rise. You’ll be seeing more and more of these types of projects.”
Baker is known for his slightly mean projects – he’s behind Rather, which gets rid of stuff you can’t stand on Facebook and Twitter, and Hate with Friends where you can find out if you and a Facebook ‘friend’ mutually hate each other.
Who needs enemies when you’ve got friends like these?