TOTAL SHARES 253

Strong title? Probably – but then PinPal deserves it.

Currently in private beta, PinPal is a new start-up that looks to create a casual dating network by using the API’s of Twitter, Facebook, Klout and, as the name might suggest, Pinterest.

From the site’s own description:

PinPal combines the visual magic of Pinterest with the connecting power of your favorite social networks to help you find your perfect PinPal!

After you sign up, we’ll search through your favorite social networks to find your friends – and more importantly, their friends! Up to three degrees of separation!

In essence, it’s a pretty smart idea and one that, when you think about it, is surprising that no-one else has thought of it. But you know there’s going to be a “But…”, and you’d be right.

The Creepiness Factor of PinPal

Note the key sentence that stands out – “we’ll search through your favorite social networks to find your friends – and more importantly, their friends!”. Doesn’t that set alarm bells ringing?

It reminds me of the issues Klout faced  a while back when they were caught adding friends of their site’s users to their platform, whether that friend was connected with Klout or not. It’s the same ideals, the same methodology.

Haven’t we learned anything from Klout’s failings when it comes to privacy and abuse of it? Apparently not, according to PinPal.

According to the FAQ section of the PinPal site, privacy no longer exists on the web. Their take on users’ privacy concerns?

Let us ask you a question – is your privacy safe online anyway? We don’t think it is, as much as we’d like it to be. So, to answer the question of privacy, you have as much privacy on PinPal as you do elsewhere online – we think that’s the fairest way to go.

So, essentially what PinPal is saying is if you trust other online properties – especially the ones we use to gather your information – then by definition you should trust us. Encouraging…

Especially when you see how the service works.

When you access the beta (invite-only at the minute – I was asked to have a look), PinPal connects your Twitter and Facebook account, and not only gets your information but also, as it turns out, that of your friends.

Whether  they’re locked down in private settings or not.

They then source that against Klout, and determine if the user is “worthy” of being in the system. For instance, you need a Klout score of 40 or more to progress.

Once your influence and worthiness of being a date partner is assessed, your Pinterest account is then brought into play, and PinPal scours that API to find people of the opposite sex that you’re connected to. That’s added to the Twitter and Facebook friend information – and the friends of the user – to create a “hot list” of potential partners for a casual date.

PinPal creates a private board and the pictures of the “possibilities” go on display for all to see. You pick your chosen Pin, and introductions are made.

As a dating site, that would work well. But PinPal isn’t just any old dating site, and therein lies the issue.

You’re On Your Own, Sport

Online dating sites are ramping up security and their process after an alleged rape of a woman using a dating site in Southern California. It’s tragic that something so awful should have spurred this action, but at least they’re trying to protect others from the same fate.

PinPal seems to avoid this major concern, and almost shows disdain for anyone asking about it. Again, from their FAQs, in answer to the question how safe PinPal dates are:

As safe as any online dating service, with the added security that this is all happening with social media, so if something goes wrong you can let people know about it. That’s pretty powerful stuff right there!

So, essentially, because you can tweet about your date, if something goes wrong – heaven forbid, something as serious as the SoCal case – it’s okay, because your tweet will be enough to create a backlash against your attacker…

At its best, it’s naivety – at its worse, it’s gross negligence and abandonment of responsibilities to your users.

So, in a nutshell, PinPal is creating potentially dangerous situations not only for you, but for your friends too, who may not even be aware they’ve been sucked into PinPal’s questionable practice.

Like I mentioned earlier, it reminds me of Klout at their peak of bad practices. But at least Klout saw sense and offered opt-out solutions for anyone not wishing to be in their system.

From the looks of PinPal, once in it’s very difficult to leave. And even if you do, your friends are still on display for all to see.

No matter how you dress it, that’s bullshit.

I reached out to Jimmy Addison, the co-founder of PinPal, for his thoughts on these concerns, but there’s been no reply as of yet.

In the meantime, if you want an example of all that’s wrong with social media, look no further than PinPal. They’ve got to be a lawsuit waiting to happen…

Click now to read the full story on PinPal.

TOTAL SHARES 253
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131 Comments on "PinPal Wants to Use Your Friends to Create a Sex Meat Market"


DannyBrown
3 years 19 hours ago

@nittyGriddyBlog Ironically enough, @Tawkly seems to have completely ripped off the @PinPalWizard idea…

nittyGriddyBlog
3 years 19 hours ago

@dannybrown Concept is still rather new to me. But I don’t think I’ll be using it anytime soon lol!

DannyBrown
3 years 19 hours ago

@nittyGriddyBlog You could be the spokeslady! :)

nittyGriddyBlog
3 years 17 hours ago

@dannybrown Haha! It’s not often that I find myself speechless ;).

kanokratisi
3 years 9 days ago

Hrm that makes me think of a great app – putting into plain English the privacy policies and TOS of companies. Ah nevermind. People probably still wouldn’t read it :)
 
http://kanokratisi.gr/bouzoukia-athina
http://kanokratisi.gr/clubs-athens
 

kanokratisi
3 years 9 days ago

Hrm that makes me think of a great app – putting into plain English the privacy policies and TOS of companies. Ah nevermind. People probably still wouldn’t read it :)
 
<a href=”http://kanokratisi.gr/bouzoukia-athina/”>bouzoukia athens</a> | <a href=”http://kanokratisi.gr/clubs-athens/”>Clubs Athens</a> | <a href=”http://kanokratisi.gr/live-stages/”>Mpoyzoukia thessaloniki</a> 

Anders Michael
3 years 13 days ago

Creative but this one is going to take a bit to get used to…

Andrea T.H.W.
3 years 14 days ago

Having credit cards circuits knowing everything about our expenses wasn’t enough. Or FaceBook knowing whatever we do online, and let’s not forget Google+. Someone shoud start a class action for net surfer to be paid royalties as it’s our online life that these guys are making money of. It’s not just a matter of privacy which has now become a kind of an empty word, it’s that they are earning millions without paying the copyrights. Better than nothing.
 
The beautiful thing about sci-fi is that it usually becomes true so sooner or later someone will create a software able to delete our personal informations wherever they are stored at our own will. This is a software I’ll surely buy.
 
Great article Danny, very interesting. :)

DannyBrown
3 years 13 days ago

 @Andrea H. | The Hypnotism Weekly Hey there Andrea,
 
More on the PinPal story here:
 
http://www.punkviewsonsocialmedia.com/why-how-of-pinpal-story/
 
With regards that software, I’d be in there like a shot! :)

Lori
3 years 14 days ago

Thanks for this Danny! Not that I’m in the dating market, but it’s good to know and to have this post to refer to.
Lori

DannyBrown
3 years 13 days ago

 @Lori More info here, Lori:
 
http://www.punkviewsonsocialmedia.com/why-how-of-pinpal-story/
 
Cheers! :)

ErnestoOrsetti
3 years 15 days ago

@CraigMcBreen what is that mean???

HowieSPM
3 years 15 days ago

So @belllindsay and I have been hanging out in PinPal and it is better than expected. We have met so many amazing people. In fact Lindsay has 13 dates lined up. It really is a game changer.

DannyBrown
3 years 13 days ago

 @HowieSPM  @belllindsay Yeah, that Lindsay is one slick mover. ;-)

Leon
3 years 15 days ago

G’Day Danny,
Oh that i was young enough to be concerned!  “Pinpal:” when I first saw the name I thought it was a site for people who sewed…….or still used cloth nappies. 
 
Nevertheless, I will inform my elder grandchildren…. and yearn……..just a tiny bit. Here in Australia most of us are automatic life members of convictpal anyway.
 
 
Now that’s fun.
 
Best Wishes
 
Leon
 
 

DannyBrown
3 years 13 days ago

 @Leon Haha, “cloth nappies” – I used to wear these buggers, mate!

wmwebdes
3 years 15 days ago

Hi Mr B
Keep still and listen very quietly…. can you hear it?
You can just make out Jimmy Addison saying… “Oh bloody helll Danny B’s on to us”.

jureklepic
3 years 15 days ago

I am sure Klout will run the perks for them… Would you date someone with lower Klout score then yours LOL :) Well they did that while back probably when PinPal was testing Klout API… 
 
I see few more political scandals coming out in next few weeks…. LOL 
 
 
 
 

DannyBrown
3 years 13 days ago

 @jureklepic Haha, and now you know the full story behind PinPal, mate. :)
 
http://www.punkviewsonsocialmedia.com/why-how-of-pinpal-story/

wmwebdes
3 years 15 days ago

 @jureklepic
 Would you date someone with lower Klout score then yours LOL :)
Very good.
 
 

RobertDempsey
3 years 15 days ago

Frankly I’m not sure what to say about this one. It’s an interesting concept and everyone knows how much I love compiling data (yes I’m a numbers freak). Let’s see how far the frat boy humor takes them. You never know…
 
As for their privacy policy, for a dating site collecting so much information it seems very weak. Their terms of service is a bit stronger.
 
As for their laissez faire FAQ on the privacy, that’s unreal for a service such as theirs. Apparently Jimmy does take a play from the Joe Fernandez play book and basically tell you to suck it up.
 
Thankfully we all have a choice as to whether or not to use the services. I’m married so I’m out anyhow. But for those “single pinners” who might be considering, I hope they read the TOS and think about it before making a decision. But I doubt it.
 
Hrm that makes me think of a great app – putting into plain English the privacy policies and TOS of companies. Ah nevermind. People probably still wouldn’t read it :)

DannyBrown
3 years 13 days ago

 @RobertDempsey See, it’s comments like yours that make us happy, mate (and you now know the April Fool backstory and reasons why we did it). It shows we succeeded in our goals – believability, and the questioning of what we give up in the name of popularity.
 
And pinpalwizard  was a hoot! :)

SunnyC
3 years 16 days ago

@shellykramer @bobledrew LOL! PinPal is like d illegitimate kid of http://t.co/0xBi2xbD who has come 2 claim d family’s inheritance.

jpippert
3 years 16 days ago

@bobledrew but what if it could connect via music? Use spotify too?

bobledrew
3 years 16 days ago

@jpippert Well, that MIGHT mean I’d never get hooked up with a girl who like Nickelback or Shania. So there’s that.

jpippert
3 years 16 days ago

@bobledrew right? What if she’s supercool on Bathrooms I Love but is a big Coldplay fan? #pinpal

amvandenhurk
3 years 16 days ago

@ShellyKramer where have you been all day? All a buzz. Trying to figure if it is legit, but today ANYTHING is possible. @bobledrew

bobledrew
3 years 16 days ago

@amvandenhurk Please tell me it’s a joke. PLEASE. And the guy running it? His last name should be Massengill.

amvandenhurk
3 years 16 days ago

@bobledrew who knows? I mean aren’t they a lot of guys who fit that?

herwheels1
3 years 16 days ago

@bobledrew @dannybrown Well, the pin *is* mightier than the sword.

bobledrew
3 years 16 days ago

@herwheels1 whaaa-whaaaaaa.

herwheels1
3 years 16 days ago

@bobledrew @dannybrown Well, the pin *is* mightier than the sword.
Now say that quickly…

marclefton
3 years 16 days ago

@dc2fla @dannybrown I’m surprised @Pinterest hasn’t shut down their API access yet.

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@brainmaker Thanks for the share, Suzanna :)

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@rbeland Hi Rob, they do seem to be naive on implications. Least @foursquare saw sense on Girls Around Me app.

rbeland
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown saw the thread btwn you and the founder. Talk about arrogance. Could @Pinterest block them from using API?

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@rbeland @Pinterest Interesting question – I’m sure they could, given their search blocking of Google recently.

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@rbeland I’m guessing they must need permission to scrape API, so could be right.

rbeland
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown The app may appear to some to be connected in some way to Pinterest.

Keilajj5
3 years 16 days ago
michelledh
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown this is all very interesting Danny boy! – hope you are well matey !

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@michelledh All well and good, miss, thanks – and yes, it’s an interesting concept but questionable approaches.

michelledh
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown Glad you are well :) oh yes, I can see that, its a bit of a worry they don’t. I meant the conversations were interesting. :)

goonth
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown @bobledrew all ties back to privacy and creating an open layer for standards (sounds oxymoronic, I know).

skypulsemedia
3 years 16 days ago

@goonth @DannyBrown @bobledrew but Pete Cashmore of @mashable declared privacy dead in 2009. Mark Zuckerberg agrees. Why don’t you?

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@skypulsemedia @goonth @bobledrew Maybe because there’s privacy and extended privacy (that of non opted-in friends) and latter being abused?

goonth
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown indeed ;)

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@goonth You know we’ll be watching that product with interest, don’t you… ;-) @skypulsemedia @bobledrew

skypulsemedia
3 years 16 days ago

@dannybrown @goonth @bobledrew I quit facebook over the DATR cookie. I hope the class action wins and torpedoes all this secret tracking

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@skypulsemedia I think it depends on product and offering – look at Twitter’s approach. @goonth @bobledrew

goonth
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown @skypulsemedia @bobledrew absolutely there is. The first taker will win big. (and I’m working on a product as we speak ;)

skypulsemedia
3 years 16 days ago

@goonth @dannybrown @bobledrew the reason it is opt out vs opt in is you know if given a choice people will not opt in hurting revenues #fb

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@goonth @skypulsemedia @bobledrew Perhaps there’s a model for revenue share for those willing to have likenesses used.

goonth
3 years 16 days ago

@skypulsemedia @dannybrown @bobledrew bottom line, there’s no reason not to make the opting part a conversation, & data shared rev for use.

goonth
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown @skypulsemedia @bobledrew that’s part of it. But in order to change the model(s), you have to experiment. Few are willing.

skypulsemedia
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown @goonth @bobledrew you know i ridicule pete for that stupid article and am pro privacy. And zuckerturd hates privacy too.

goonth
3 years 16 days ago

@skypulsemedia @dannybrown @bobledrew the approach to #privacy requires a big shift in cultural & biz thinking, but dead it is not!

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@goonth @bobledrew That’s a great point, and a sensible one – it’s the multi-layers and hidden terms that confuse

goonth
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown @bobledrew …and the confusion part has been the M.O. for cos trying to do large data captures from the onset. Bad precedent.

Chris_Eh_Young
3 years 16 days ago

RT @DannyBrown: RT @bobledrew: Oh Good God. As if Klout wasn’t enough, looks like PinPal is the next heinous thing: http://t.co/a7ufXY1J

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@Chris_Eh_Young Cheers, Chris – hope you’re well, mate. PinPal is an interesting concept, if flawed (at the minute)

Chris_Eh_Young
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown Interesting indeed. Crazy times we live in.

design58
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown @bobledrew sounds like front seats in the courtroom to watch the after effects – people will still get sucked in like lemmings

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@design58 @bobledrew That’s the sad thing – the audience it’s for may be looking for “quick fix” and not think consequences

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@lipdesign @bobledrew Thanks, Lori – always something jumping on a bandwagon. :)

lipdesign
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown no kidding! The creepiness factor of PinPal makes my hair stand on end. What next?

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@lipdesign The basic premise is good (use social media to connect single people), but the privacy abuse is bad.

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@lipdesign Oh, I see…. :)

lipdesign
3 years 16 days ago

@dannybrown LOL. Um, no … YOU are going to write it. I don’t have a clue about this sort of thing ;)

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@lipdesign Look forward to reading it! :)

lipdesign
3 years 16 days ago

@dannybrown Great question! There’s a blog post in that. You’re welcome ;)

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@lipdesign Ha, thanks. Though Seth Godin’s “Permission Marketing” from 10 years back still relevant today. Why do companies miss this?

lipdesign
3 years 16 days ago

@dannybrown See? You know these things. I sleep better at night knowing there are smart people like you working on these issues :)

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@lipdesign Agree. Which brings the whole opt-in approach to the fore, would solve a lot.

lipdesign
3 years 16 days ago

@dannybrown Absolutely. Social media and privacy present a unique set of challenges.

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@spaceguy1 @ambermac @sarahlane It’s definitely an interesting concept, but the inception leaves a sour taste. #pinpal

spaceguy1
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown @ambermac @sarahlane pinpal’s intro was bad timing in light of Girls Around Me App, but your points on their privacy are valid

jpippert
3 years 16 days ago

@ImTheQ I did beta signup but b/c I was out of town haven’t dug into @pinpalwizard to get full understanding, saw @dannybrown post 1st

AmyVernon
3 years 16 days ago

@AmyAlex63 What, doesn’t appeal to you? ;) #APinTooFar #PinPalisCreepy

allanschoenberg
3 years 16 days ago

@AnneWeiskopf Honestly, nothing surprises me anymore.

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@allanschoenberg @AnneWeiskopf Surprised it took so long, given the space we’re in…

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@byron_fernandez @belllindsay @HessieJones Some things probably seem a good idea at the time. Implementation, though? That’s the doozy.

hessiejones
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown @byron_fernandez @belllindsay trying to build success early makes people do desperate things, at the expense if users

byron_fernandez
3 years 16 days ago

@hessiejones @DannyBrown @belllindsay By Far the Best assertion I’ll likely see in my networks today. Veritas y brava, Hessie

belllindsay
3 years 16 days ago

@hessiejones You are wise, grasshopper! :D @byron_fernandez @dannybrown

byron_fernandez
3 years 16 days ago

@hessiejones @DannyBrown @belllindsay “All good things come to those who Wait. But only things left by those who Hustle…” ;) Happy Sunday

hessiejones
3 years 16 days ago

@byron_fernandez @DannyBrown @belllindsay hey I’m your modern day Honest Abe:)

belllindsay
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown Part of me wants to say “great idea”- but then the creepy crawlies start. Just eww! @byron_fernandez @HessieJones

DannyBrown
3 years 16 days ago

@belllindsay @byron_fernandez @HessieJones Agree. The concept makes sense but the “people on display” mindset is wrong.

byron_fernandez
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown @belllindsay Agreed. I believe people who know how to treat others with dignity, fairness and compassion #Transcend as Leaders

byron_fernandez
3 years 16 days ago

@DannyBrown @belllindsay @HessieJones Agree. I believe people who know how to treat others with dignity, fairness and compassion #Transcend