Here are two possibly related cultural tidbits. First up is the Invisible Boyfriend/Girlfriend app. Excerpt:
With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, countless singletons are no doubt gearing up to respond to that dreaded question from parents, grandparents and other nosy relatives: “So, are you seeing anyone?”
Yep, we’re for real. The apps, founded by St. Louis’s Matthew Homann and Kyle Tabor, let users pay for “believable social proof” that they’re in a relationship. They generate everything from photos and meet-cutes to text messages and actual voicemails—all of them totally fake, but also totally realistic.
It’s easy to point to this and cry out, “oh, how pathetic!” And, yes, it’s true that some – maybe most – of the people who will use that service will be those who can’t get a date any other way. (Meaning, not at all.) But it’s better to look at this from another angle; here, in fact, is a shrewd entrepreneur who identified a potential market and crafted a service to take advantage of it. Homann and Tabor may well make a ton of money from this, and they will have earned it.
The second story takes Homann and Tabor’s target market to the next level, and it’s troubling for a place and people yr. obdt. is very fond of: Nearly 50 Percent of Japanese People Aren’t Having Sex. Excerpt:
Nearly 50 per cent of all Japanese adults are not having sex, according to a study, dealing a new blow to government efforts to halt the sliding birth rate.
The report, conducted by the Japan Family Planning Association, determined that 49.3 per cent of the 3,000 people interviewed had not had sex in the previous month.
Of the men interviewed, 48.3 said they had not had sex for a month, while 50.1 per cent of women had abstained. Both figures were up about 5 percentage points from the previous study, conducted in 2012.
Asked why they were not having sex, 21.3 per cent of the married men claimed they were too fatigued after work while 15.7 per cent replied that they were no longer interested in sex after their wives gave birth.
Among the women, 23.8 per cent said sex was “bothersome” and 17.8 blamed being tired from work.
Too tired? Really? Too tired?
Is that even possible?